Located in the Shangri-La hotel, Xi Shi is a lounge with distinct personality. Cocktail waitresses wearing traditional, hand tailored cheongsams from Shanghai emulate the namesake, Xi Shi, the ancient Chinese Goddess of the Lotus Blossom. The classic bartender, passionate about flavor, mixes creative cocktails to delight the palate. Xi Shi is an ideal spot for a casual business meeting or a relaxed lunch. On the weekends, a traditional afternoon tea set is enhanced with classical piano and in the evenings, socialize in an intimate setting with interesting live music, innovative evening snacks and inspired cocktails.
I went for afternoon tea, and I informed the non English speaking staff that I am allergic to nuts, except for Peanuts (multiple times) and they misunderstood, thinking that I was only allergic to peanuts and when they brought out the pastries/sandwiches 30 mins later, I mentioned to the manager (the one who brought it to our table) whether it contained nuts. She then mentioned that she was not made aware of this allergy by the waitstaff. She then doubled checked with the chefs and brought it out stating that it was nut free, even though I recognized a dessert with nuts in it. Approx. 10 mins later, the manager came back to notify me that there was actually a nut in a pastry which I informed her that I had already realized this even thought it was re-assured to me that the selection provided to me contained no nuts.
They need to be more careful with nut allergies, especially when it is fatal for some (myself included). Traces of nuts are fine, however any item with an active nut ingredient will send me to the hospital. I have been to several places for afternoon tea, and each place has taken great care in providing me a nut free selection, and they usually substitute a nut free dessert for those that contain nuts (hence, I get my monies worth). This was not the case here. To be fair, there was only one item with a nut in it, so I was not bothered that they did not provide me with a substitute. The food was delicious!! In addition, I enjoyed the music from the pianist.
The staff was very friendly but at the Shangri-la, I would have assumed that they would have had English speaking staff.
As well, it would have been nice if the tea was served in a French Press, with a kettle filled with hot water, this way my tea with always be hot instead of cold in an hour. As well, the two out of the four of us received their meals (which were ordered a la carte) 15 mins before my sister and I did (we ordered the afternoon tea, as previously stated).