Take Your Little Lady or Gentleman for Holiday High Tea

They may run wild on the playground all year in a uniform of scuffed sneakers and juice-stained tees, but even the most rough-and-tumble kid will get a kick out of getting cleaned up for a super special date with mom and dad. Many Holiday High Teas are designed with the littles in mind, and in addition to pretty pots and tiny sandwiches, can include treats like cookie decorating, hot cocoa and even magicians. Pinkies up!

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photo credit: Top of the Mark

Magical Tea at Top of the Mark
The Top of the Mark once again hosts a family-friendly tea time that is more than your average afternoon tea. While you sip, your kids will enjoy a face painter, a real firetruck display and the antics of a magician, as well as the chance to home your own edible creations at the ginger cookie decorating station. Grown-ups will love the buffet of tea sandwiches, scones and special eats from the hotel’s Executive Chef. For the kids, the chef will serve up kid-friendly bites like pigs in a blanket, mac and cheese and chicken nuggets. $60 per person. Reservations required. Call for specific dates and times.

Bonus: Each guest who brings a new toy to donate to the San Francisco Fire Department toy drive will receive a $4 discount on the price of the tea service.

Top of the Mark at the InterContinental Mark Hopkins
One Nob Hill
San Francisco, Ca
415-616-6941 (Reservations required)
Online: intercontinentalmarkhopkins.com

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Teddy Bear Tea at the Ritz
Teddy Bear Tea at the Ritz has become a yearly tradition for many Bay Area families. The classic event, which tends to tip towards the fancier end of holiday teas, stars Stretchy the Elf, his side-kick elf, and the super cuddly Ritz-Carlton teddy bear. Kiddos can indulge in hot chocolate, teddy bear cookies and assorted sandwiches, while mom and dad can relax with some tea, snacks or some champagne. There will be holiday stories, sing-a-longs and photo-ops with the Ritz’s teddy bear. $110 per guest. Reservations required.

Bonus: A portion of the proceeds benefits Make-A-Wish® Greater Bay Area.

When: Seatings at 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. November 29-30; December 5-7, December 13-14 and December 19-23.

The Ritz-Carlton San Francisco
600 Stockton Street
San Francisco, Ca
415-296-7465
Online: ritzcarlton.com

westin_st_francisPhoto: Westin St. Francis

St. Francis Holiday Tea
Your little guests will be dazzled upon walking into the lobby by the St. Francis Sugar Tree, hung with over 1,000 pieces of spun sugar ornaments. Tea service includes a choice of fine Artisan teas from Mighty Leaf or Red Blossom Tea Company (kids 12 and under receive regular tea at half price), followed by a selection of English tea sandwiches, freshly baked black currant scones and seasonal berries with Devonshire-blend cream, preserves and assorted petit fours. Adults can opt for the Royal Tea, which includes the complete tea service with a glass of Gloria Ferrer sparkling wine.Reservations are required and we recommend booking early. We also recommend a trip up the glass elevator for an extra (and free) thrill. $45-$53/adults; $25/12 and under.

When: November 29 – December 21; available Saturdays and Sundays only, 2 p.m. to 4 p.m.

335 Powell St.
San Francisco, Ca
415-774-0264
Online: starwoodhotels.com

Lovejoy’s
If you’re looking for an off-the-beaten path holiday tea experience then take the fam out to Lovejoy’s in Noe Valley. This cozy room offers a quaint tea experience with tons of quirky decorations and decor that will delight the little ones. And, during the holidays the folks at Lovejoy’s transform their tea room into a winter wonderland and offer extended hours so be sure to check their website or call ahead because reservations are recommended. They are already booked on weekend throughout December, but they are accepting people for their waiting list in case of cancellations. There is an extensive menu, including a dedicated “Wee Tea” (for kids under two) that features cream cheese and jelly sandwiches, a scone, fresh fruit, a petit four, and tea or hot chocolate, all for $15.95.

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1351 Church Street.
San Francisco, Ca
415-648-5895
Online: lovejoystearoom.com

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photo credit: Secret Garden

Secret Garden Tea House
This hidden little tea room feels like you’ve stepped into a children’s book circa 1910. The decor is very whimsical and colorful, and they go over the top when the holidays roll around. Parking is not hard to find especially on if you visit during the week or on a weekend afternoon. Best of all? The price is substantially more affordable than what you’d pay downtown. Stop in for their Holiday Prince and Princess Tea designed especially for the under 12-set anytime between Dec. 1-Dec. 23. with seatings at 11 a.m., 1:30 p.m. & 4 p.m. Have your choice of tea, hot chocolate, egg nog, or lemonade, along with festive tea sandwiches, plus a plate full of holiday sweets and cookies and a Christmas Gift Bag filled with surprises your little one can take home. Cost is $22.95 per person. Reservations required.

Tip: Be sure to try their assortment of hats to wear while sipping on your freshly brewed holiday pot.

721 Lincoln Way
San Francisco, Ca
415-702-0398
Online: secretgardenteahouse

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photo credit: Mel T via Yelp

Tal-Y-Tara Tea and Polo Shoppe
Tea and horses go together like….well, we’re not sure what, but they’ve got plenty of both at Tal-Y-Tara. Their team room is a blend of old and new world style with an emphasis on equestrian culture—perfect for those little horse lovers in your family. They will be hosting a holiday tea party on Sunday, December 8 and Sunday, December 15 with two seatings noon-2 p.m. and 2 p.m.-4p.m. Wear your finest holiday garments and get ready for a visit from Santa Claus, carolers, sing-alongs, sandwiches and scones, and of course, tea. Cost is $25 per person. Reservations required.

6439 California Street
San Francisco, Ca
415-751-9275
Online: talytara.com

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photo credit: Jen Durfey via creative commons flickr

Worth the Drive

Holiday Tea at Silverado Resort & Spa in Napa
Head on up to Silverado in Napa for holiday tea times on December 14. This third annual Teddy Bear Tea will feature treats like tea sandwiches, scones and petit fours. Your kids will enjoy a puppet show and receive a teddy bear to take home. Advanced reservations are required. Call 707-257-5432 or email dining@silveradoresort.com. Cost: $40 per person.

1600 Atlas Peak Rd.
Napa, Ca
707-257-5432
Online: silveradoresort.com

Will you be indulging in a little high tea this holiday season? Share with us where you’re planning to take your kiddos–we want to know!