My cousin and her two lovely daughters were finally visiting me in London! I wrote my ultimate guide to visit London with children for them and I wanted them to experience the very cool Mary Poppins themed afternoon Tea especially after my friend Sima recommended it. Her daughters are the same age as my cousin’s daughters and since they loved it, I thought my cousins would too!
To celebrate the relaunch of the the five original Mary Poppins children books, this themed afternoon tea experience was created with a lot of attention to details such as the iconic black umbrella that Marry Poppins used and her carpet bag that was full of warm treat.
The choice of food was also very specific and particular to scenes in the Marry Poppins 1964 Disney movie, which was remade last year, 2018, and named Mary Poppins Return! She is definitely making a strong com back and including the whole family in it.
I remember watching the old film with my grandfather and it was really for my mother’s generation who have it as part of their childhood, but it’s a classic. There was even the movie of Saving Mr. Banks, 2013, where Walt Disney convinces the writer, Pamela Lyndon Travers to sell him the rights to the movie. All the movies are just magical and full of memories. Okay, back to the tea experience!!
How to get to the Aqua Shard?
Aqua shard is a restaurant and bar within the Shard building. It’s located outside London Bridge station. There are even signs in the station pointing to the Shard building. It is the second entrance and the security are very helpful in pointing you out to the exact door. When you get in there is a quick security check and then up the elevator you go.
Are the Aqua Shard views worth it?
Aqua shard is on the 31st floor, which makes it a great view point to see London from above. You can easily spot Tower bridge, which most people think is called London Bridge, London eye, other iconic London skyscrapers and the river Thames.
In general, the views are fantastic and the girls LOVED being able to see London during their afternoon tea especially that we managed to go on a beautiful clear day with only few clouds.
Photography tip: Consider the time of the day you go because if it’s too bright with the sun your view photos will have a glare in them.
How is the food in the Mary Poppins Afternoon Tea experience?
It’s not halal, but vegetarian and pescatarian menus are available. We chose the vegetarian menu and it was very nice let me tell you about everything we got!
The Savoury part of the menu:
For the vegetarian selection we got 5 types of savoury sandwiches:
Hummus on a little pancake thing and it was very nice
Egg and mayo with truffle and I actually enjoyed the truffle with eggs and now I am sprinkling my homemade eggs with truffle any chance I get!
Traditional English cheddar cheese and onion jam
Beetroot sandwich it was bland, but okay
and sun-dried tomatoes were alright.
The last three sandwich didn’t blow my mind, but they were okay.
The Sweet part of the menu:
We were so excited about this!! We got two types of scones: plain ones and ones with raisins. I enjoyed the theatrics of the waitress taking them out of the carpet bag and placed on the table.
They tasted fresh and were served with clotted cream and jam, so it was all a nice combo. I was getting really stuffed at this stage and I still haven’t gotten into the real desserts yet!!
Red velvet cake with cream and jam was delicious! It was basically the highlight of dessert.
The ginger stars were okay. The store bought ones are nicer (sorry!).
The cake in the tin was a cute touch and because I wanted to take it away with me, they gave me the tin too and I will be using it in my kitchen! The cake inside was like a syrup/honey cake, which I liked but the girls weren’t a fan of. The thing covered was dark chocolate was my least favourite. We were all not impressed with it.
The last and coolest thing of the dessert was the cotton candy (we call it girls hair in Arabic lol).
Overall, the food was nice. My taste buds didn’t explode with taste and originality, so I wouldn’t go just for the food but I would go for the whole experience, which I think was very nice.
Tea and Beverages:
They had the normal tea selection plus two special tea blends to go with the menu. I tried Mary’s tea, which was a delicious blend of black teas from around the World, elegant rose petals, faintly sweet & floral finish. The tea is unlimited, which you will really need especially with all the sweets.
The girls got hot chocolate instead of the tea and they enjoyed it and that was unlimited too. I think they had two each. Let’s just say we all had a massive sugar rush after all of this, but it was FUN!
Is Mary Poppins Afternoon Tea in London Halal and Muslim Friendly?
They do not have a halal meat option in the Mary Poppins afternoon tea experience even if you place a request 48 hours in advance. They have a pescatarian option with smoked salmon and crab if you like these types of sea food, which we don’t.
We just stuck to the vegetarian option and made sure that everything was alcohol free.
Alcohol is served during the afternoon tea, so it depends if that bothers you or not. The afternoon tea tables are all far away from the bar, so you do not see it prepared or hear it. There were a few Muslim families there as well.
The staff were all very nice and respectful, so to me it was a very Muslim friendly experience.
Make sure you book this experience at least two days in advance - if you want to be close to the views ask for a window view table. You can still see everything even when you are in the inner tables.
The price of the Mary Poppins tea experience is £49 per person, but £55 with service. So, it is a little pricey, but it is to be expected for the location.
The dress code is smart casual and I just wore one of my maxi dresses with some comfy flats.
For bookings: call 020 3011 1256 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Ps. Not sponsored.
It might be fun to read the books before going or after for your children if they are not familiar with it that might make their experience extra special, but it’s not necessary.