Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Afternoon Tea and Birthday Cake @ Number Sixteen

Can you think of a better way to spend a rainy, gray London afternoon than sitting in the beautifully decorated drawing room of Number Sixteen hotel in South Kensington, eating mouthful after mouthful of freshly prepared (and perfect) finger sandwiches (cucumber, smoked salmon, egg cress and mayo, in case you wanted to know), macaroons, fruit tarts, brownies and scones washed down with the tea of your choice (I had jasmine)?  Um, I can't.

We gathered at the small boutique hotel in West London to celebrate a friend's birthday and I left feeling that I wanted needed to treat myself to a weekend there - it was slightly nauseating just how perfectly our party dresses matched the decor which matched the candy-colored macaroons and cakes.

Not to mention the actual birthday cake (also crafted by the hotel), which was - I'll have you know - carrot cake covered with the most delectable buttercream and cream cheese icing and adorned with (YES!) edible flower petals, served with champagne and a drop of creme de cassis:

Lush?  Yes. Luxurious?  Yes.  Over the top?  Never.

Aside from the marvelous cakes:

I was absolutely in love with the plump cushions (which prompted one guest to kick off her patent heels and tuck her legs under) and ultra-thick embroidered silk cushions which made you feel instantly like Alice in Wonderland - minus the Mad Hatter.  Plus, I was particularly taken by this piece, hanging above our heads:

Essentially, it's a room I want to have in my house.  Someday.

So even if it's not your birthday, I'd recommend dropping in to Number Sixteen and taking your tea in the garden, which I heard is even lovelier on a sunny day.

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