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Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 24 September 2018

Tania’s Teahouse: charming and chic to a tea

Whether it’s a special occasion or just a break, this two-storey cafe offers many delights 

Tania's Teahouse is cleverly designed. Tania's Teahouse
Tania's Teahouse is cleverly designed. Tania's Teahouse

There’s a cafe with a pink door on Jumeirah Beach Road, Dubai, that’s as cute on the inside as it is on the outside and designed to a tea.

Tania’s Teahouse is the work of entrepreneur Tania Lodi and since opening in April, the establishment has generated its fair share of social media buzz.

While arguably not the most hidden of the region’s food gems, the so-called “millennial cafe” is proving a “strong” favourite locally, thanks to its quirky on-trend offerings.

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From the rose gold interiors and pastel hues throughout the two-storey villa, situated just down the road from the Burj Al Arab, to the cylindrical statement staircase connecting the two dining spaces and clever tea-inspired wall art that screams “hey there habib-tea”, your senses will be on high alert from the moment you walk through the door. And that’s just the decor.

Lodi, who has lived in the UAE for more than a decade, is keen on sharing her passion for tea and baking. She started her business plan at university in Toronto, Canada, and opened up the cafe in Dubai three years later.

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“It was a lot of work, and one of the hardest times of my life, but it was so fulfilling and I can’t believe we have come so far,” says Lodi. And she already has plans to expand. “My long term goal is to open in other cities such as New York, Toronto and London,” she says. “I’d love to also come up with spin-off teahouses, maybe with slightly different vibes or themes.”

Her carefully curated tea menu includes blends called “Don’t chai this at home”, “Socie-tea snob” and “tea-tox” teas. There is also plenty of choice for coffee-drinkers and foodies.

I visited the cafe recently, thinking that by now, the hype may have died down, but it hasn’t – on a Saturday morning Tania’s is packed.

The interiors are as lovely in person as they had appeared on my Instagram feed. There is a tea bar, tea-themed merchandise, a cake case and board games. Being coeliac I am more impressed by the thought that has gone into the menu, food allergies-wise, and in particular with the “paleo guac toast” – a slice of toasted sweet potato with a blend of creamy guacamole and a hard-boiled egg on top, and drizzled with a zesty sauce (Dh55). Other dishes that catch my eye include the “chia later, pudding” all-day breakfast dish (Dh45) and the “Let’s taco ’bout it” super-bowl salad with crispy tortilla pieces, ground beef, veggies, cheese and salsa (Dh55).

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Tania’s Teahouse offers free valet parking and, apart from impressing your friends when it’s your turn to choose the brekky, it’s the ideal place for remote working or that special birthday afternoon tea occasion.

Lodi also has a calendar of fun events coming up, ranging from a jewellery showroom pop-up to yoga and DIY/craft classes.

If you haven’t yet squeezed in a visit to the cafe with the pink door everyone’s been talking about, you (and your Instagram account) are missing out.

Open daily 10am to 6pm. Jumeirah Beach Road, near Umm Suqeim Park, www.taniasteahouse.com

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