Although afternoon tea is a British tradition, Japan, too, offers an opportunity to enjoy tea time with all the luxurious trimmings.

Traditional afternoon tea is generally served in a three-tiered stand. The lower plate contains a selection of dainty finger sandwiches (including the thinly sliced cucumber variety), and the second plate consists of scones served with clotted cream and preserves. Cakes and pastries, meanwhile, occupy the upper plate.

As for the tea, standard English teas are broadly used, but recently a wider variety — including herbal tea, Chinese tea and even Japanese green tea — is on offer, often served in silver teapots and delicate bone china cups against a formal backdrop.