I was walking a 5 mile route following a guide that said there were no facilities on route.
I was aching from the previous days walk, and was getting hungry. Imagine my joy when I found this little oasis at Lee Bay.
It was like a secret house, that appeared as you walked up the path through the stunning gardens. It's magical.
There were a few people there on my visit, but certainly not packed. On this visit the staff were friendly, charming and efficient. Some of the other reviews state that the service is poor and slow, but I think you need to take this tea room for what it is. Relax, enjoy the gardens, and enjoy the slightly slower pace.
If you're a fan of Costa, rather than small independently run places with character, then this is not for you! I personally like to support local businesses and initiatives rather than impersonal coffee giants.
I thoroughly enjoyed a [large] piece of coffee and walnut cake that was fresh from the oven. A pot of earl grey came with an additional pot of hot water (I had several pots of earl grey over my stay in the area, and this was the first place that provided hot water). Beautiful bone china added to the experience. After about 20 minutes, a lady came round everyone to see if they wanted more hot water.
The surroundings are truly stunning. A selection of small and larger tables, some with parasols, are on offer, scattered around the garden with lots of space between you and your neighbouring diners.
I can not fault this visit. Relax, take your time, and soak up the atmosphere. If you want to be part of conveyor belt service then by all means head to the nearest 'everyone looks the same'-Costa.
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