In my pursuit of having afternoon tea in as many countries around the world as possible, I sometimes forget that there are great options within my own backyard… aka NYC. So it’s good to get out and explore what the city has to offer in terms of afternoon tea, and even better when I get to do it with fellow afternoon tea enthusiast, Jee!
The Lowell is located in a convenient address for tourists and business travelers. It’s steps away from flagship shops by luxury designers, Central Park and easy access to Midtown Manhattan.
When you enter The Lowell, take a left to the elevators and up to the second floor where the Pembroke Room is. The best way to describe the ambience is like stepping into your own living room, but with a little more elegance that only a hotel on the Upper East Side can offer.
Each of the room’s four corners have corner booth seating with enough seats for up to five diners. Even with several windows lining the room, it’s a little dark, just adding to the homey elegant feel.
On a Thursday afternoon, there were only two other parties having tea.
The Pembroke Room’s selection of teas include black, green, herbal and fruit infusions. There’s also a tea sommelier recommendation, but I went with a classic earl grey as I usually do with afternoon tea. The description: blend of China teas with fine Bergamot from Calabria (Italy).
The Pembroke Room at the Lowell Hotel offers three afternoon tea packages. This review shows The Classic Pembroke Tea. The Pembroke Royal Tea includes a glass of champagne and The Lowell Imperial Tea includes a champagne and caviar.
The Savory – (five varieties per person)
Savories include the traditional fare – cucumber and dill, lobster roll, turkey arugula, deviled egg salad and smoked salmon.
Except there’s fun takes on each, instead of a boring normal sandwich.
— Bethany Looi (@bethanylooi) August 17, 2018
The Scone – (one scone per person)
After the savories and sweets were brought out, our server came with a basket of warm scones. Our selection included plain or fruit, served with Devonshire cream, lemon curd and jams.
The Sweet – (five varieties per person)
Two plates were reserved for the desserts. Included petit fours, assorted fruit tarts, French pastries and macarons.
I had the red one and wanted it because it was decorated with chia seeds. Never seen that before.
Food is served on a classic afternoon tea stand.
Double thumbs up for the way tea is served. There aren’t many afternoon teas I’ve been to around the world that use teapot warmers. The Lowell uses warmers with tiny tealight candles that make a huge difference.
Servers were attentive and friendly. We didn’t feel rushed and were frequently checked on, without feeling interrupted.
I didn’t check this time around, but with the majority of hotels, if you’re not a guest you can ask for a temporary access code.
Social Media Aspect
The Lowell Hotel posts occasionally on their Facebook, Twitter and Instagram channels.
The Lowell is now added to my top favorites for afternoon tea in New York City.
The best part of the whole experience is the ambience of the room. It’s hard to imagine just a few steps away is all the crazy aspects of a city – traffic, crowds of people, noise. This is now my own oasis in the middle of the city, even if just for a few hours.
Cost: $63 USD per person for The Classic Pembroke Tea (in this review)
Tea Time: Wednesday – Sunday from 2 – 6 pm at The Pembroke Room at The Lowell
28 E 63rd Street (Madison Ave.)
New York, NY 10065