Every now and again, a touch of luxury for no reason is called for in life. Society’s focus always seems to be on doing things for the betterment of body or mind – people will tell you that you’ll feel relaxed if you go for a run or read a book. But, to me, it’s just as important to make time for the betterment of your soul. Luxury for no reason is for the soul.
Luxury can take many forms. Often for me, it takes the form of turning up my favourite tunes and dancing around the kitchen whilst cooking and singing, in a fashion which is all together too blushable to describe. It’s an Occupational Health & Safety nightmare. What can I say, I like to live dangerously.
By far, one of my favorite ways to find luxury is in my oldest and dearest friends. There is luxury in sharing their company. Time together is always full of heartfelt laughter and smiles which make my ears hurt! Once we finished university, we couldn’t have gone on more distinct pathways – both in career choice and location. So being separated makes time together a super-charged luxury.
Hubby and I are currently taking a week-long break on the Gold Coast, which is only an hour and a bit from Brisbane, our home town. My gorgeous girlfriend, M, who is keeping a place marker for us in Brisbane, made the journey down to see me. M is, hands-down, the warmest, sweetest and most luxurious friend a gal could have. She has the same effect on an establishment as freshly baked muffins – you just can’t help but smile in her presence. Plus, she always has the best ideas for fabulous places to go – this time it was High Tea at Palazzo Versace!
I didn’t want to stick out like a sore thumb tourist by taking my grownup camera, so these photos are taken on my phone and therefore, just assume, it’s far more beautiful than this (which it was)!
What did we eat? The Fashionista High Tea
The menu read: Deliciously light scones with Bonne Maman preserves and whipped King Island double cream… and it’s no word of a lie. They are deliciously light scones. Bonne Maman jams are always a treat and I know of no better cream than King Island double cream.
There was an assortment of lovely sandwiches, served with a roasted capsicum dip which was delicious. The sandwiches were lovely and fresh. A frequent issue that I find with high teas is that the finger sandwiches are often prepared in advance and therefore dry on top and soggy on the bottom. These sandwiches did not suffer that fate. They were fresh-as-a-daisy and delicious. I particularly loved the thought which had obviously gone in to matching bread type with fillings. For example, the multi-grain bread with brie, turkey and cranberry was a lovely texture match.
The menu read: Heavenly selection of tailor made designer pastries, featuring cake pops, macarons, cupcakes, a fresh fruit tartlet and more. And again – not a truer word were spoken. This photo does not do the colour on this plate justice.
The luster dusted cupcakes were as delicious as they were pretty. Full of cinnamon and other spices, they were light, fluffy and not too sweet.
We both agreed that the macarons were some of the best we’ve had. They packed a beautiful berry punch. The coffee éclair, lemon meringue tart, fruit tart and chocolate mouse filled chocolate sponge lamington were all delightful treats. And the cake pops… oh the cake pops… who knew cake pops could have so much elegance?
I was well aware that the marble, no-expense-spared, ornate environment had me swooning well before the food came out. Ordinarily I’d find that much marble and sparkle a bit over the top. It is not a décor I’m generally drawn to. But, it had been done with oodles of taste. Plainly put, the place was beautiful.
I easily could have forgiven ordinary food for the experience of sitting in such a fabulous and comfortable spot. But, there was no need to make excuses for the food. Because the food, like the place, was a tasteful and elegant balance between extravagance and subtlety. There was not a fault to find.
What did I drink?
Pineapple Cardamom Crush
I considered having the more traditional champagne accompaniment to our high tea, however, as it happens, I’m not much into champagne. But I do love to watch a good mixologist in action!
A mix of Cognac, Chartreuse, pineapple, cardamom syrup and lemon juice. It was delicious. Cognac is not something I’m ordinarily drawn to, but pineapple juice is my holiday drink and thus, being on holidays, this was the drink for me. I felt über sophisticated drinking this baby. Although I could have done with a straw, but I’m willing to forgive this oversight.
Lady grey tea
A Ronnefeldt tea, this lady grey was a lovely floral tea, with hints of citrus.
Would I recommend it?
Yes. It exceeded my expectations and was the best high tea I’ve had. The service could have been a tad more attentive – but I’m splitting hairs. The food was sublime and it was a generous serving size for a high tea.
This outing was a bit more luxury than is ordinary for me, but it made for a fabulous way to start the holiday… and gee it tasted good!