Afternoon Tea - The Fairmont Empress Hotel
Afternoon Tea - The Fairmont Empress Hotel

Afternoon Tea - The Fairmont Empress Hotel

  • Dining Style: Casual Elegant
  • Website: http://www.fairmont.com/empress
  • Phone: 2503892727x
  • Hours of Operation:
    Daily Seatings start at 1130am
  • Payment Options: AMEX,Discover,JCB,MasterCard,Visa
  • Cuisine: Afternoon Tea
  • Executive Chef: Morgan Wilson
  • Dress Code: Smart Casual
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
  • Additional Details: Entertainment, Fireplace, High Tea, Non-Smoking Restaurant, View, Wheelchair Access
  • Entertainment: Pianist plays daily during Afternoon Tea Service.

Getting there

  • Parking: Public Lot
A word from Afternoon Tea - The Fairmont Empress Hotel
Steeped in tradition, The Fairmont Empress has been serving Victoria's grandest tradition of Afternoon Tea for over a century. The majestic lobby of this landmark hotel has played host to England's most beloved ritual - the taking of Afternoon Tea to famed celebrities, dignitaries and royalty alike.



Our Award-winning Pastry Team works their magic, ensuring an authentic and memorable experience - from your very first sip of our secret Tea at The Empress blend tea, right through to his freshly baked raisin scones served with heavy cream and strawberry preserves.



Served in the relaxing atmosphere of the elegantly restored Tea Lobby, overlooking Victoria's sparkling Inner Harbour, Afternoon Tea is an absolute 'must do' for all who visit Victoria.



Please note any dietary concerns or restrictions in your reservation.
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Awards voted by OpenTable diners
  • Diners' Choice WinnerBest Overall
  • Diners' Choice WinnerBest Ambiance
  • Diners' Choice WinnerBest Food
Afternoon Tea - The Fairmont Empress Hotel reviews from OpenTable diners
609 reviews since May 5, 2014
Overall Rating4.4
  • Food4.3
    Service4.5
  • Ambiance4.5
    Noise LevelModerate
89% of reviewers would recommend this restaurant to a friend.
special occasion (497)scenic view (261)romantic (218)great for lunch (120)fit for foodies (120)great for brunch (110)good for groups (93)neighborhood gem (79)kid-friendly (62)hot spot (37)great for outdoor dining (23)notable wine list (9)late-night find (4)vibrant bar scene (2)Show More
  • Over priced - below average service
    dimple
    Dined on 8/31/2014
    I've waited for years to try out the famous high tea at Fairmont Victoria. Finally, I got an opportunity but realized it was not worth. The service was poor - waited for 10 mins at the check in desk before anyone came, waited for 25 mins at the table before anyone came to ask for drinks, take order or say hello. Finally, when the server came, she looked busy & uninterested & brought the fruit with cream without even hello or ask for a drink? I asked her if she knew one of us was vegan as noted in the reservation & she of course didn't. Then she disappeared & never came back. 10 mins later a totally different server took over our table and he was much better. Tea & pastries were good but their quantity wasn't worth the $70.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • The Empress of High Tea
    PSvisitorVIP
    Dined on 8/31/2014
    Tea at the Empress is a unique experience; I have enjoyed coming here since I was a child in 1968, and I have yet to be disappointed by the high tea, whether it be the service, the scones, or the tea itself. Although it is expensive, it is definitely worth the experience of having high tea in a legendary hotel.
    Special Features:
    kid-friendly, scenic view, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Must do once
    OpenTable Diner Since 2013
    Dined on 8/30/2014
    It's a lot of money, but worth it at least once in your life!
    Special Features:
    romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Nostalgic Charm
    2funluvbirds
    Dined on 8/29/2014
    Enjoyed the taste of "old world" elegance in a beautiful setting. The food and service was excellent and the experience was fun and pleasurable even after my first experience at The Empress Afternoon Tea 39 years ago! Loved it!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch, romantic, scenic view
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • A one time must.
    Bartender11
    Dined on 8/29/2014
    Everyone should experience Afternoon Tea when visiting Victoria. It is expensive so make sure you know it is.
    Special Features:
    special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Afternoon tea at the Empress
    OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 8/29/2014
    My daughter and I had afternoon tea at the Empress on Friday afternoon of Labour day weekend - a treat before she starts at UVIC this Fall. We thoroughly enjoyed a very relaxing setting that generations before us have enjoyed too. From our table, we could watch the boats in the harbour and see the float planes come and go - truly amazing! We highly recommend a visit - add it to your bucket list.
    Special Features:
    romantic, scenic view, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Excellent for American visitors
    BucketList
    Dined on 8/29/2014
    A fun thing to do for American visitors. Excellent server who walked us thru how to choose tea and eat the delicious food. Once in a lifetime bucket list kinda thing to do
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch, romantic, scenic view, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Felt like I was in England
    sazer
    Dined on 8/28/2014
    I have been to England three times, it's my favorite place on earth, and having tea at the Empress took me right back there. We were also fortunate to have an English waitress, which added so much. She was attentive, friendly, and very knowledgeable about the hotel, she made the whole experience even more special. I feel terrible that I forgot her name, she was the best!!! And I have to say, great tea, had the Empress blend, so good I had 6 cups.
    Special Features:
    special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Exquisite
    Cruiseguest
    Dined on 8/28/2014
    We had afternoon tea at the Empress hotel as part of our one day cruise stop in Victoria. It also happened to be my sister's birthday (and she loves all things British-esque!) and it was a wonderful way to celebrate the day. Everything was pristine including the food and the service. A bit pricy but of course you're paying for the fabulous ambiance and even with the price I would do it again if I ever return to Victoria! A must for tea lovers if you're in this city!
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem, romantic, scenic view, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Elegant but...
    DrJen
    Dined on 8/28/2014
    I do wish you had a choice of food selections. The food was excellent but not all of the items in line with my preferences. For the price I would have liked to have something different. The best blueberries I have ever had. The pineapple orange tea was great and my 6 and 8 year olds enjoyed it too. The prince and princess tea menu was adorable.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, neighborhood gem, scenic view, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 8/28/2014
    Wonderful food and excellent service. The room was just beautiful. My friend and I were very happy to be there, and enjoyed the tea very much. If I am ever able to be in BC again, I will certainly come for tea again (and again!).
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for brunch, neighborhood gem, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • It's High time for high tea
    JacquelynnVIP
    Dined on 8/27/2014
    High tea is an absolute must for enjoying the full BC experience - and the Empress did not disappoint. Delicious finger foods, their own blend of tea, tasty desserts and enough food to feel content.
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, great for lunch, romantic, scenic view, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Another Great EMPRESS High Tea
    MinnNorsk
    Dined on 8/27/2014
    My husband and I experienced the Empress High Tea together for the first time last Summer and here we are back again...it was just as lovely this time and we enjoyed everything so much. The waiters are so efficient and knowledgeable about the hotel and its history...we really do adore this place and intend to come back every year! It was wonderful and memorable!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for brunch, neighborhood gem, romantic, scenic view, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Over-rated and over-priced
    ALfromTO
    Dined on 8/26/2014
    Unless you want to be seen in a hotel lobby having tea & treats, save your money & go for a fancy dinner instead! Not much privacy as people walk past the tea area constantly, plus dishes clattering. Tea for 5 came to $360 and the sandwiches & scone were no better than what my (older) kids can make; while other treats you can pick up at Murchie's or the like for a fraction of the price (and full-sized). You do pay for the "cuteness" of the mini-sized treats if that float your boat. The tea will disappoint you if you are a cappuccino/latte people. The coffee (tea) table that we're at is smaller than the one at our hotel; slide out trays help but that's hardly elegant for a supposedly high-class tradition. We packed half the treats back!
    Special Features:
    special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Royalty For An Hour
    Astraguy
    Dined on 8/26/2014
    Of course, more expensive than any meal we had, but well worth it for the experience. The 'snacks' were excellent, the sweets unmatchable, the service supurb, and the atmosphere regal. Oh, the tea was great too!
    Special Features:
    romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Elegant High Tea
    HighTeaFans
    Dined on 8/25/2014
    Both my husband and I love a proper High Tea and we were not disappointed. The Empress blend of tea was perfect, all the finger sandwiches, scones and pastries were to die for. On top of this the service was impeccable and the atmosphere takes you back to the turn of the century. The cost is high but worth it.
    Special Features:
    special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Empress Afternoon Tea
    OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 8/25/2014
    We enjoyed the tea very much, and appreciated the wonderful friendly waiter. If we could change anything it would be the ability to hear the piano better. The food and tea were delightful. What a wonderful memory.
    Special Features:
    special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great Service at the Empress
    Josefisagem
    Dined on 8/25/2014
    Josef was our server for Afternoon Tea at the Empress. He was lovely, attentive, and knowledgable yet he respected our time to visit and enjoy our lovely tea. I would definitely go for tea at the Empress again.
    Special Features:
    scenic view, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Empress Tea
    hostingvisitors
    Dined on 8/25/2014
    I have been to afternoon tea many times at the Empress and have loved it in the past but this experience was not as special. First, the cost of the tea is really out of line with what you get. I will be reluctant to recommend that people spend this much money given the quality of the food and the noise level.
    Special Features:
    special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Fantastic afternoon tea !
    Cupcake
    Dined on 8/24/2014
    Very friendly service, tasty sandwiches and pastries, scones were cold though. We had a table with a view on the harbour, very romantic: overall a very pleasant experience, so far from the UK !!
    Special Features:
    great for brunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Beyond Expectations
    foodiewithdownhomeflair
    Dined on 8/24/2014
    Afternoon Tea was everything I expected and more! The tea was delicious and the room was gorgeous but more than that the food was incredible! All the finger sandwiches were delicious and you got one of each for each person so no deciding who gets the curry chicken :-) The scone and bluberries with cream were both amazing and then five desserts, which were perfectly crafted. An amazing perfect experience.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch, kid-friendly, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Empress Tea room impresses
    OpenTable Diner Since 2013
    Dined on 8/24/2014
    Wonderful, it was fantastic. A must do in Victoria.
    Special Features:
    special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Elegant as always
    Babalish
    Dined on 8/24/2014
    High tea at The Empress never disappoints. We had a great time and wonderful food as expected. The legacy continues!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, great for brunch, great for lunch, neighborhood gem, romantic, scenic view, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • A Memorable Anniversary Treat
    offthebucketlist
    Dined on 8/24/2014
    We really looked forward to our Empress experience and were certainly not disappointed. It was lovely and Paz, our server, was so welcoming, pleasant and efficient.
    Special Features:
    romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Ilovetea
    Dined on 8/23/2014
    My daughter and I thoroughly enjoyed our afternoon tea at the Empress. We will return! Our server was outstanding!
    Special Features:
    romantic, special occasion, scenic view
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • For the experience
    Lovetoexperiment
    Dined on 8/22/2014
    This is one of those special treats you have to try for the experience. It can get a little pricey, but it is worth every penny. The specialty teas are subtle with great flavor and the cheese platter tasted so good. The service is impeccable and it's just fun to say you had high tea at the Fairmont Empress Hotel. I will definetly take my friends the next time I get to Victoria.
    Special Features:
    special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • One of the highlights of Victoria
    Bookwoman
    Dined on 8/22/2014
    Great view of the harbor as you dip tea and enjoy some good food. Wine and cocktails available if tea isn't your "thing."
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Not worth the visit
    lediner
    Dined on 8/22/2014
    An unsuccessful attempt to duplicate Tea at the Empress. Noisy, with clattering dishes and silver as well as crowded. Factory like approach - just the opposite of a leisurely graceful respite. The food was OK, but overpriced. A Disneyland imitation of afternoon tea.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Amazing
    Love2travel
    Dined on 8/22/2014
    Everything was perfect, from the ambience, food, waitress, view, music, everything. It is an experience that everybody should have while visiting Victoria B.C.
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, romantic, special occasion, great for lunch, scenic view, neighborhood gem, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Dessert
    skipthedessert
    Dined on 8/21/2014
    The scones and sandwiches where delightful as usual. The desserts were disappointing; looked different, but tasted the same. Whatever happened to the classic petit fours, lemon tarts and vanilla cream layer cake?
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, romantic, special occasion, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • TheJohnsons
    Dined on 8/21/2014
    This was on our bucket list for 35 years and we were very pleased.
    Special Features:
    great for brunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • great for gluten free
    kbp312
    Dined on 8/21/2014
    I was so amazed and pleasantly surprised with how they were able to make the entire menu gluten free and so delicious!
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, fit for foodies, good for groups, romantic, special occasion, great for lunch, scenic view, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Special birthday tea
    OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 8/20/2014
    We expected outstanding & that is what is was. The boxes of tea to take home was a nice surprise.
    Special Features:
    special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Tea at the Empress
    wally
    Dined on 8/20/2014
    Never fails to meet the high standards set. Consistent in attention, quality and ambience. Highly commend the staff for their attention and professionalism.
    Special Features:
    special occasion, scenic view
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Afternoon high tea
    OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 8/20/2014
    Great experience to try once but way too pricey and posh. Wound not do it again. I found Abkhazi afternoon tea much more charming for less money, not so posh but great service
    Special Features:
    kid-friendly, romantic, special occasion, scenic view
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • EXCELLENT service & wonderful food!
    foodfun
    Dined on 8/20/2014
    EXCELLENT service & wonderful food in a relaxing & beautiful setting.
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, good for groups, romantic, special occasion, great for lunch, scenic view, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelCannot Recall
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Tea at the Empress
    OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 8/19/2014
    This venerable tradition continues despite "new" ownership of the hotel. They could have mechanized more, but have not - their goodies are still made in-house. The only downer on this return visit was the bathroom - it was late in the afternoon and really needed cleaning.
    Special Features:
    kid-friendly, fit for foodies, romantic, special occasion, scenic view, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Tea at the Empress Hotel
    tea4two
    Dined on 8/19/2014
    Great place to go for a high tea experience. Food and tea were excellent. Presentation wonderful. Staff very gracious.
    Special Features:
    special occasion, scenic view, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Wonderful
    berryprincess
    Dined on 8/18/2014
    Enjoyed afternoon tea at the Empress. Such an elegant experience, really gracious and positive server.
    Special Features:
    scenic view
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Great time
    OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 8/18/2014
    We had a very good time. Would recommend this as a have to do.
    Special Features:
    kid-friendly, good for groups, romantic, special occasion, scenic view, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate