Prêt-à-Portea: Fashionable Afternoon Tea at The Berkeley

pret a portea the berkeley hotel london - East End Taste Magazine

Afternoon Tea at The Berkeley Hotel is where food meets fashion. Prêt-à-Portea is derived from the term Prêt-à-Porter, or ready-to-wear fashion, as opposed to bespoke or tailor, made. Whether you adore fashion or are snagging a seat at the catwalk for the first time, you will fall in love with this one-of-a-kind afternoon tea experience. And what better location than in London’s Knightsbridge neighborhood?

The Berkeley Hotel, located between Hyde Park and fashionable Knightsbridge, is the epitome of modern British Luxury and is just a short walk away from the landmark shopping destination, Harrods.

History of Prêt-à-Portea

The fashion-focused afternoon tea has been celebrated for twenty-eight seasons thus far. It first launched in the spring of 2005. In total, 95 designers’ creations have appeared throughout the history of Prêt-à-Portea. Past designers have included Anya Hindmarch, Philip Treacy, Simone Rocha, and Victoria Beckham. Prêt-à-Portea has also popped up elsewhere around the globe including in New York. Their destination across the pond was Bergdorf Goodman’s on Fifth Avenue.

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“From Catwalk to Cakewalk”

The Autumn/Winter 19/20 collection includes confections inspired by the following designers’ runway fashions: Emilia Wickstead, Jacquemus, Richard Quinn, Karl Lagerfeld’s last work for Fendi, Moschino, and Molly Goddard. The two favorites were the inspiration of Richard Quinn’s juxtaposition of florals with latex bodysuits, boots, and opera gloves; and Molly Goddard’s epic gown that was the finale of Goddard’s collection.

Richard Quinn’s cake, designed to share, is a pecan chocolate sponge topped with white chocolate and framboise mousse with a raspberry and ginger confit center. Served “upside down”, the cake is topped with a blue sugar bow and wafer legs. Goddard’s confection is a cinnamon financier filled with Pink Lady apple mousse and apple compote. The cake is wrapped in pink spun sugar and sprayed with glitter tableside.

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Exclusive for the month of December was The December Tastemaker by FLOWERBX Founder Whitney Bromberg Hawkings. Whitney’s cake was a Victoria sponge ‘Bronsai’ bag designed by Simon Miller, with bourbon vanilla butter cream, orange marmalade, encased in Ivoire chocolate paste and topped with a shimmering spiced biscuit Christmas wreath.

The Stylish Afternoon Tea

The three hour afternoon was so memorable. It must be expressed that this is an experience one would hope to have season after season. In fact, for all fashionistas and foodies, it should be a must at least once per season. It is also the perfect opportunity to treat loved ones for their birthday, anniversary, or for any reason to celebrate.

“An experience that will fit your palate like a glove.”

A personalized place setting is set on the table for your party. Get ready to sit, relax, and bask in an experience that will fit your palate like a glove.

The tea menu includes a selection of green, oolong, yellow, white, tisane, pu erh, and black teas including rare and seasonal teas. Coffee is also available as is hot chocolate that is served with fresh whipped cream. Our favorite teas from the vast selection are Ceylon & Rose, Vanilla Black, Jasmine Silver Needle, and Dragonwell Green at the beginning of your tea experience.

The Berkeley tea sandwiches were some of the best tea sandwiches in London. If you had ever considered grabbing seconds for your tea sandwiches, The Berkeley is most certainly the spot where this is a must (no, we don’t care how full you already are!) Our two favorite Tea Sandwiches are the Roast Corn Fed Chicken with truffle cream braised leeks & parmesan on sourdough bread; and Baked Heritage Beetroot with aromatic peppered goats cheese, pickled walnuts, French sorrel on tomato bread.

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Exclusive for the Festive Tea, guests received mulled wine and mince pies alongside the tea, and took home The Berkeley’s Christmas jam. 

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Images courtesy of The Berkeley Hotel


Prêt-à-Portea’s base price is £60 per person. It is served everyday between 1-5:30pm. We recommend the Couture Champagne Prêt-à-Portea, with a glass of Laurent-Perrier Rosé for £76 per person. For younger guests, the Signature Mocktail Prêt-à-Portea with a glass of a refreshing Mango & Rooibos mocktail for £70 per person is an excellent choice.

Reservations may be made online.