Royal Opera House


If you remember back to my Goodbye Summer post, I said I was going to do three B’s this autumn. One of them was ballet at the Royal Opera House.

In fact, I was lucky to be at the Royal Opera House twice in one week.

Earlier on, I saw the Royal Ballet’s production of Manon, which was gloriously tragic. The costumes, the set and the dancers were all very beautiful. I am not a big ballet enthusiast and don’t go often. So, the night out with my friend, the Ex-Ballerina, felt very occasion-like. She told me that the ballet dancers work through a pair of pointe shoes a week when they’re performing! I thought it would be the toe bits that break, when in fact, it’s the sturdy arch support which bites the dust.

Later in the week, I went to a birthday afternoon tea with The Girls. The Royal Opera House started doing afternoon tea in the autumn, and it is a wonderful way to appreciate the building. I love the Paul Hamlyn hall with it’s mix of Victorian and modern architecture, and the oval bar running down the middle of the room. It’s the kind of place you want to stay longer to linger. I enjoyed the tea and the catch-up. The cakes and pastries weren’t overly sweet, which is how I like it. My favourite bits were the scones and plum jam. It’s definitely somewhere to take an out-of-towner.

~ Spotted Cow

IMGP4478Afternoon tea at Royal Opera HouseIMGP4461


London afternoon tea at the Gilbert Scott Bar

When it’s raining in London – and even when it’s not – head for afternoon tea in the old school glamour of the Gilbert Scott Bar at the St Pancras Hotel.  When you sweep in by car into the glorious curve of the hotel driveway, you are transported into its Victorian splendour.

Eight friends convened for my birthday. The cakes are bite sized morsels of yumminess served on cake stands with birds perched on the handle. There are elements of surprise – rolled cucumber sandwiches & mini knickerbocker glories! If it’s still raining when you finish tea, the cocktail menu is inventive enough to stay on another hour or so. They cater for vegans too if you give them notice at the time of booking.

Spotted Cow