Afternoon Tea Near Granville Island and Olympic Village
Recently, it seems that there are abundantly more afternoon tea services popping up around the city. New choices in town include downtown newcomers like H Tasting Lounge and Honey Salt Vancouver. On the outskirts of the city, there's Audrey Moment in Burnaby and Little White House in Langley. For those who live in Vancouver and prefer to get around in their own personal automobile, there's Hy Tea Lounge. It's conveniently situated in the Armoury district, right on the edge of Granville Island and it's surprisingly easy to find parking. That is always a bonus. After taking some tea, you can make a day of visiting the island and picking up some fresh produce at the Public Market.
Take Tea or Try on Dresses?
The lounge itself is bright and airy since the stand alone glass building is blessed with floor-to-ceiling windows. Fashion themed artwork lines the walls while a rack of elegant ladies formal wear hangs by the cash counter. Apparently, the four-month new tea lounge is used not only for taking tea, one can even try on elaborate evening gowns in a private fitting room at the back. I'm not quite sure how this service works and neither was the manager. He told me that they're still working on a concept to blend the two services together into one cohesive business. I think it's a new and interesting concept if they can pull it off. It's definitely worth a try since it's getting harder and harder to stand out in the Vancouver afternoon tea scene. There are just so many new choices, specifically along the False Creek area, there is already a newcomer like Yandoux Patisserie. I have plans to visit them soon so stay tuned.
With or without the dresses, tea at the Hy Tea lounge proved to be quite an enjoyable experience for me and my dining companions. The food was good, the ambiance was modern and comfortable, and the location is convenient for those going by car. Overall, there wasn't a specific aspect which stood out to me but everything met my expectations; with their medium price position, perhaps by default, that may be their unintended selling point: great value.
Until our next tea date.
- One of the newest afternoon tea offerings in Vancouver. (H Tasting Lounge being another one.)
- Gorgeous photogenic space with tons of natural light.
- Specialty blended tea selections.
- A la carte lunch options available.
- Great location near Granville Island, easy to find parking.
- 3 different types of tea sets according to price.
Ambience: The lounge is situated in a stand alone glass building shaped like a pyramid. The entire space is bathed in natural light making it the ideal place to feel like you're outdoors, without facing the harsh elements. It's perfect for taking super photogenic photos of your pretty tea set.
Scones: The regular sized scone was served with honey and clotted cream. The scone was neither crumbly or fluffy. It was on the chewy side, almost like a bun. Unfortunately, this was a miss.
Savoury: 6 savouries of decent size. They were all average to good so the sweet items were the stronger offering in this tea set.
Sweets: 4 house made sweets were all good. Especially the panna cotta and rose cream puff which impressed me. It's always a challenge to make a cream puff that has a crispy shell that holds the cream well without getting soggy.
Tea: An interesting medium sized tea collection including 5 black teas, 3 green, 2 Oolong, 5 herbal, 2 Rooibos, 4 lattes and 9 specialty blends. Their tea choices will please most guests as there is something for everyone. I was most impressed with their latte and specialty tea blend offering. I ordered the Rose Lychee (specialty tea, see below) which is a cold drink consisting of rose petals, lychee juice, lemon, sparkling water, honey and apple. It was so heavenly!
Note that the specialty teas are $10 when ordered without the tea set. With the tea set, only an additional $2.50 is charged since the set comes with one pot of tea valued at $7.50
Tea Ware: Chic and sleek. All the gold cutlery matched the gold rimmed plates that were also printed in gold with "Hy Tea Lounge" on it. For those who love to snap a good afternoon tea photo, you'll be happy to know that the treats are brought out on a traditional white 3-tiered tea tray.
Alcoholic Beverages: Prosecco can be added onto tea sets for an additional charge.
Service: With everything good happening here, perhaps the weakest link is the service. It's good enough and definitely appropriate for the venue but it lacked a bit of energy and focus. The manager did take the time to come over and speak with us and tell us more about the tea sets.
♥ Hy Tea
6 savouries, 4 house made sweets & 1 scone. Includes 1 pot of tea worth $7.50.
$36, add $12 for Prosecco
Demi Hy Tea
3 savouries, 3 house made sweets & 1 scone. Includes 1 pot of tea worth $7.50.
$29, add $12 for Prosecco
Signature Hy Tea (by reservation only, min. 2 sets)
7 premium savouries (lobster, fois gras etc), 4 sweets & 1 scone. Includes 1 pot of tea AND 1 glass of Prosecco.
$88, no extra charge for Prosecco
♥ Parking: Lots of metered parking available on the streets. There is also an open air parking lot across from the lounge. The closest Car2Go parking spots are a block away by the water. It's a little harder to reach by public transit as it is 30 minutes away by foot from the closest sky train station, Broadway-City Hall. Research on Google your direct bus route.
♥ Tel: (604) 731-9636
Adress: 1540 W 2nd Ave, Vancouver, BC V6J 1H2
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