When taking a break from champagne, the Sybaritic Single prefers teas. Being a connoisseur who sources his own loose leaf blends from two of the most coveted Parisian houses, he particularly enjoys tasting unique flavours commissioned by luxury hotels.
One of his latest favourites is Mélange Plaza, served at Hôtel Plaza Athénée in Paris: a particularly fruity tea flavored with figs, grapes and quinces. In the past, the tea complemented desserts by Christophe Michalak, and today it goes equally well with sweets by another pastry genius, Angelo Musa.
In Monte-Carlo. thé Hôtel de Paris is another firm favourite with hints of figs, cherries, bergamot, lemon, lotus and blue petals. Slightly dizzying at first, it sets guests just in the right mood for crossing the road towards the casino.
Further east, the Sybaritic Single never misses an opportunity to enjoy specially blended masala chai at the Taj Palace Mumbai. Crafted to perfection with just the right amount of black tea leaves, spices, herbs. milk and sugar, the incredibly professional resident chaiwala will refuse to enter in a discussion about how much sugar to put in the tea – the flavour must remain authentically Taj and be savoured while enjoying the view of the Gateway to India outside the hotel.
Finally, the Sybaritic Single remains faithful to his Hong Kong tradition of always coming back to the original Mandarin Oriental for a pot of the Blooming Fortune tea – for good luck. Right across the harbour, The Peninsula Hong Kong boasts, perhaps, the richest collection of signature teas, offering 48 flavours to select from, including several quirky seasonal blends. As often with The Peninsula, the tea collection is well-marketed and is a commercial success across all of its in-house and airport boutiques, as well as online.
At times when the Sybaritic Single misses Cambodia, he calls the concierge of Raffles Grand Hotel d’Angkor who quickly arranges for his favourite lemongrass blend to be flown from Siem Reap to wherever the nostalgic traveller might be. That is the luxury every hotel should afford.