Grand View Tea Gardens, Shanklin

Date visited: Sunday 20th June 2021

The Grand View Tea Gardens belongs to the neighbouring Luccombe Hall and Luccombe Manor hotels, but is operated separately from them. Located at the top of the cliffs in Old Shanklin, until 2020 it was on the Isle of Wight coastal path, and got considerable trade from passing walkers. Unfortunately, a landslip has closed the steps down to the beach that were beside the tea gardens, and the path here is now a dead end leading only to the tea gardens.

A ham and mustard sandwich, coffee and walnut cake and a cup of tea. Owing to pandemic restrictions the tea garden is only using disposable crockery and cutlery.

If the sun is out the Grand View Tea Gardens are open from 10am to 5pm in the summer months, 11am to 4pm in winter. There is daily opening, weather permitting, in the school summer holidays but more limited opening during other months. On the day I visited, the gardens had only opened during the afternoon as it had been an overcast morning.

For an establishment with unpredictable opening hours and food served from little more than a shed, the menu offers a relatively extensive selection of hot and cold snacks, mostly made with local produce. A small selection of homemade cakes are displayed on the counter. I chose a ham and mustard sandwich, coffee and walnut cake and a cup of tea, which came to £9.60. The tea came with milk served in a separate paper cup. The ham was thicker sliced than is often the case, and the cake pleasantly enjoyable – not too dry but not particularly moist either.

To see the eponymous ‘grand view’ one has to stand beside the fence at the top of the cliff.
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