Good Tea Service
I'm a huge tea lover and am always looking for new places to try tea, tea sandwiches, and desserts. These are the places that I've tried so far. I'd love to hear any more suggestions.
The Mark Hotel-Unimpressed
Lady Mendyl-love but expensive
Gee, I'm really surprised that people didn't immediately leap to answer this.
There are all kinds of articles about NYC tea places, if you google around. One place that was very pleasant, and off the beaten track, is the Harlem Tea Room. It's also nice that it's more reasonably priced, because afternoon tea has become one of the biggest rip-offs in town in recent years.
Thumbs up for Harlem Tea Room for its affordable and reasonable afternoon tea. Thumbs down, however, for its service. In a word, it can be unbearably s-l-o-www, even for something as leisurely as afternoon tea. I've been there more times than I care to remember b/c it's nearby and convenient, but not in a while. Service is really erratic. You might not always get your water filled, you might have cutlery dropped on your lap, and you might not always get the response you want from Patricia, the owner, when you approach her nicely about the service issues.
The former owner of the T Salon in SoHo's Guggenheim Museum just opened a tea shop in Chelsea Market. The Ritz in Battery Park City has Tea. There is a small tea shop on Allen that offers a three hour traditional Asian tea service.