It's no secret that Valentine's Day is a Hallmark holiday designed to bring you and your sweetheart closer by separating you from your hard-earned cash. Luckily, more and more couples are starting to realize this, and are opting to celebrate with romantic experiences rather than marked-up flowers, throwaway tchotchkes or mass-produced chocolates. Aside from cutting down on waste, planning a special activity for your special someone demonstrates a lot more effort, which = more kisses and cuddles for you! From a blindfolded food tasting to a balmy date at the hothouse, read on for our favorite creative V-Day activity ideas.
We all know that there’s a direct pathway to a person’s heart through their stomach, but if you’re looking for something new and exciting to serve your favorite foodie, how about spicing things up with some molecular gastronomy? Combining science with the culinary arts, these recipes reinvent old classics by packaging them in surprising new ways like sexy liquid spheres, fun foams and sultry gels. To make things even more interesting, ask your partner to join you in the kitchen as you whip up dinner.
Photo: New York Botanical Garden
Why settle for a bouquet of carbon-intensive roses when you can surround your Valentine with thousands of exotic blooms? A trip to your local botanical garden is a feast for the eyes and a cozy way for the two of you to escape the cold inside of some balmy, climate-controlled hothouses.
Photo: Spa Castle USA
Love is stressful enough as it is—so why do we tax ourselves even more by waiting in line with a hundred other people at the florist or navigating busy signals to make last-minute dinner reservations? This year, skip the hassles and head to your local sauna, spa or bathhouse for a relaxing day with your amore and rejuvenate your weary bodies as well as your love.
Art is one of the greatest expressions of love, and pairing it with wine only heightens the effect. Take your muse out to a boozy painting class and put your artistic abilities to the test while enjoying a few glasses (or bottles, depending on how abstract you want your art to be) of vino.
Do you remember your first date with your love? Whether it went exactly as planned or was a total disaster, chances are that he or she will be blown away by the flood of emotions you’ll unleash by re-creating that special day. You don’t have to go crazy—simply taking them to the spot where you fell in love and throwing in allusions to some other fond memories will do the trick.
Don’t let frigid February temps keep you from celebrating Valentine’s Day in style. Surprising your better half with an indoor picnic will warm up their spirits and whet their appetites. All you need is a blanket, some nibbles, and some wine. Plus, no having to worry about ants!
They say that suppressing one of the senses heightens the others. Wouldn’t it be fun to try this theory out with your partner? Just grab a tie or a dishtowl and some exotic food pairings like cocoa and habanero, or cardamom and coffee to put your sweetie’s sense of taste to the test.