Sunday, 2 March 2014

The Ritz-Carlton Toronto - An Elegant Afternoon Tea Experience


As I've mentioned in previous blog posts, I LOVE afternoon tea. I've lost count of how many tea houses I've visited, and I'm always on the lookout for new exciting places to try. One of the absolute best that I've ever experienced is the afternoon tea at the Ritz-Carlton in Toronto, Ontario.

Located on Wellington Street just a short walk from Union Station, the Ritz-Carlton is the epitome of first class elegance. The hotel is the perfect mix of modern and glamour with a touch of old world grandeur.

A few months ago, my three girlfriends and I decided to make the trip downtown to experience the hotel's afternoon tea. The moment we arrived at the hotel we knew we were in for an incredible day. We were greeted at the door by the incredibly friendly staff and upon telling them we were there for tea, we were escorted down to the lounge and shown immediately to our table.

We all ordered the Classic Tea, and within a few minutes our friendly waitress had brought over a collection of teas for us to smell in order to make our choice. We all made our selections and then waited patiently in the gorgeous dining lounge until our beautiful presentation of sandwiches, scones and desserts arrived.

It's always exciting waiting for the treats to arrive at any aftAs I've mentioned in previous blog posts, I LOVE afternoon tea. I've lost count of how many tea houses I've visited, and I'm always on the lookout for new exciting places to try. One of the absolute best that I've ever experienced is the afternoon tea at the Ritz-Carlton in Toronto, Ontario.

Located on Wellington Street just a short walk from Union Station, the Ritz-Carlton is the epitome of first class elegance. The hotel is the perfect mix of modern and glamour with a touch of old world grandeur.

A few months ago, my three girlfriends and I decided to make the trip downtown to experience the hotel's afternoon tea. The moment we arrived at the hotel we knew we were in for an incredible day. We were greeted at the door by the incredibly friendly staff and upon telling them we were there for tea, we were escorted down to the lounge and shown immediately to our table.

We all ordered the Classic Tea, and within a few minutes our friendly waitress had brought over a collection of teas for us to smell in order to make our choice. We all made our selections and then waited patiently in the gorgeous dining lounge until our beautiful presentation of sandwiches, scones and desserts arrived.

It's always exciting waiting for the treats to arrive at any afternoon tea, as we never know exactly what we're going to get, but the quality and quantity of the food at the Ritz-Carlton was truly 5-star. The scones were fluffy and melt-in-your-mouth and the sandwiches were deliciously gourmet. The smoked salmon on a mini croissant was probably the best sandwich I've ever had at any afternoon tea that I've been to.

And the desserts...oh the desserts. We could rave on forever about the mini lemon meringue tart and even though we were full, we just had to finish every last crumb on our plates. From fruit tarts to chocolate squares, there wasn't a single misstep in the entire menu.

We rarely visit an afternoon tea location twice, as we're always on the lookout for something new, however after experiencing the magnificence of the Ritz, we were back again for tea within the month.

The Ritz-Carlton is an absolute must for any afternoon tea lover. With a changing menu, you can go back again and again and experience the different offerings that the incredible kitchen staff have prepared. We are already planning a third trip down and we would recommend it to anyone looking for a touch of elegance and a spot of tea.



Have you visited an amazing cozy escape that you’d like to recommend? Send us an e-mail and let us know! We’re always looking for new places to visit. cozyescapes@outlook.com

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Saturday, 8 February 2014

A Christmas Tradition with the National Ballet of Canada


Today's post is a little different in that we're not featuring an inn or a spa, but an experience that is equally as relaxing, amazing, and beautiful. The National Ballet of Canada, based in Toronto, Ontario, is the epitome of a world-class ballet company. Housed in the stunning glass-walled Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts in the heart of the downtown, a production of the ballet is an absolute must for anyone visiting Toronto.

Having been to several of the ballet's productions, I can honestly say that every single one has been a masterpiece. And one of my absolute favourites, which has become a yearly family tradition, is their magical interpretation of The Nutcracker. It is truly a show that you can return to every single year and feel like you are watching it for the very first time.

Set in a Russian winter wonderland, the ballet opens during a cozy family Christmas party. Watching the incredible dancers, costumes, sets and listening to the magnificent orchestra, takes you back in time and allows you to feel like you are a guest at the warm and inviting party. Complete with dancing horses and roller skating bears, this ballet will absolutely appeal to people of all ages.

There are so many incredible scenes that it is impossible to choose a favourite. From magical growing Christmas trees, to the awe-inspiring dance of the snowflakes, to the gilded kingdom of the Sugar plum Fairy, every scene is a delight to the senses and keeps you enthralled from start to finish. And it's hard not to stare in amazement when the Sugar Plum Fairy's beautiful Faberge egg home makes its first appearance. Even more so when the dancing fairy emerges from the centre.

The absolute highlight of the entire experience is without a doubt the incredible dancers. They truly pull you into the story and the talent exhibited by lead dancers makes the story come to life before your eyes. Even the children featured from the National Ballet School truly embrace their roles and put their whole hearts into their parts. And it's hard not be moved by the ADORABLE dancing sheep. You'll know them when you see them :).

The National Ballet's production of The Nutcracker is a tradition that is going to continue in our family for years to come. And without a doubt, we would recommend it to absolutely everyone.


Have you visited an amazing cozy escape that you’d like to recommend? Send us an e-mail and let us know! We’re always looking for new places to visit. cozyescapes@outlook.com

Visit us on Twitter @cozyescapes for updates on new blog posts!