Afternoon Tea, Sandbanks Hotel, Sandbanks, Dorset

What a wonderful setting for an Afternoon Tea. Sandbanks is a thin strip of land overlooking Poole Harbour on one side and the beach up towards Bournemouth on the other side. An elegant four star hotel dating back to the Art Deco era. Not so pretty on the outside but that’s not really surprising with the sea on both sides causing a weathered look to the white exterior.
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We rang to book in earlier in the day which was a good job as there was a wedding and a black tie event both booked in.

We chose to sit on the verandah overlooking the gorgeous sandy beach and watched the bride and groom from the wedding have their photos taken. Part of the verandah was roped off for the wedding party but plenty of tables were still available for non wedding guests. What a wonderful location for a wedding.
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We had booked Afternoon Tea for two on the phone and Mr C also said we were both wanting Afternoon Tea to the waiter at the outside bar. This waiter then came and asked if that was an Afternoon Tea for one? Trying not to be sarcastic we confirmed it was actually for two!

We weren’t asked if we wanted coffee or given a choice of tea. No one asked if either of us were vegetarian or if there were any dietary requirements. We waited around 20 minutes but it was well worth the wait.
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We each had three finger sandwiches, beef, salmon and cucumber. The beef and salmon were delicious and definitely good quality ingredients, I would have preferred a pinch of salt on my cucumber one. The bread was a mix of white and a granary style brown and they all tasted very fresh. Quite a few Afternoon Tea sandwiches are prone to dryness but none of that here!
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We each had two fruit scones served with cream and jam. Very freshly baked and perfectly light and fluffy and not crumbly or hard. I always fight with the obligatory dusting of icing sugar and once again had to keep dusting my top!
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We asked for a large pot of hot water to keep our pots of tea going.

Our cakes were a slice of lemon drizzle cake each, a strawberry filo tart and a slice of chocolate tiffin.

The strawberry tart was full of a delicious vanilla creme pat and was light and wonderful. The lemon drizzle was buttery, light and full of citrus zing and the chocolate tiffin was as good as my own… high praise indeed for that!

Loved the touch of class with the biscotti served on our saucer and the fact the cream had been put into mini jam jars.

I love Afternoon Tea because it’s all my favourite foods in one! Sandwiches, scones and cake all in a pretty display stand… what could be better? I’m not usually good with surprises but I love the fact that you never really know what sugary temptations will arrive when you order an Afternoon Tea.

All in all a wonderful location, a reasonable price and a totally scrumptious afternoon tea. A bit let down by no choice on the tea front but that’s only a small niggle.

The car park was manic due to the events taking place but luckily a space did come free. There were two disabled spaces in the car park but both were full and cars were parked everywhere even where there weren’t official spaces.

The ladies Powder Room was on the first floor and the Gentleman’s and disabled on the ground floor. There was a lift to the first floor.

Highly recommend if you’re in the area. The cost was £14.50 per person.

Sandbanks Hotel
15 Banks Road, Poole, Dorset, BH13 7PS

I have not been asked or paid me to write this review. All comments are my own.

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