10 Wonderfully Romantic Date Venues In Manhattan
“This great big city’s a wondrous toy, that’s made for each girl and boy.” So goes the beautiful old song, “Manhattan”, and who can deny the truth of it. Not just a borough of New York, or a global tourism destination, but a magical place with every possible attraction for lovers, and endless possibilities for romantic date venues.
Here are ten of the very best – both well known and iconic, and discreet and little known.
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1. The Oyster Bar in Grand Central Station. Gorgeous, art deco restaurant, wildly expensive but seriously good. Stations are wonderful places for creating an atmosphere of wistful romance, of infinite possibilities, in a way that airports never can be. Stroll around the station and admire the wonderful architecture before heading for the restaurant. The menu has great seafood of all kinds if oysters aren’t your date’s thing. For oysters at a price that won’t break the bank, try Fish, on Bleaker St. Less glamour, but more bang for your buck.
2. The Metropolitan Museum of Modern Art. Always an astonishing place to visit, as you come face to face with some of the most beautiful paintings in the world, paintings that you’d only ever seen in reproduction before. The “Oh wow!” factor is very high here, but there are also many less famous treasures which make for a memorable visit. The restaurant is pleasant, but busy, so seek out a more romantic spot to lunch or dine. The Cloisters, MOMA’s outpost for sculpture, is another great spot to visit with its enchanting gardens.
3. Carl Schurz Park is a hidden treasure, with swings, dog run areas where your pets can run and play, there’s even a statue of Peter Pan. Stroll along the East River and enjoy the views, with their strange beauty, and end up and Gracie Mansion. A great afternoon date, and much less obvious than that old standby, Central Park.
4. The Mulberry Project. This cosy hideaway in Little Italy with its low lights and rich upholstered seating is just the place for an intimate tete a tete. What’s more, the barman will create and name a cocktail just for you on the spot – how is that for a touch of romance? It can be a bit hard to find, so scope it out first. Try the Project Burger topped with pickled onions – but only if you both choose it!
5. The Wine Cellar Room at the 21 Club. This has the feel of a speakeasy – you reach it through the kitchen, and it’s behind a fake wall. Once inside, the wine themed décor is a real talking point, and the food, if pricey, if very good. Well spaced out tables complete with red and white gingham tablecloths make this a great romantic yet light hearted date spot.
6. The Empire State at midnight. Yes it’s touristy, yes it takes an age to get there, but it’s still an iconic New York experience, with sumptuous views and great opportunities for romantic selfies. Be prepared for a seemingly endless wait to actually get to the top, so have plenty of conversation ready. When you get back down, there are lots of great little eateries in the area where you can warm up and fuel up – it always seems to be cold up there whatever the weather. But the view....
7. Jane’s Carousel at Brooklyn Bridge Park has been refurbished, and who doesn’t love a carousel ride? Afterwards, having admired the gorgeous bridge, stroll to Gran Electica for their famous tequila cocktails. We recommend this order of proceedings!
8. Ride the Staten Island Ferry. This is a great date for a sunny day – or a snowy day when you can snuggle up and have a drink or two at the bar while watching Lady Liberty sail past. And when you get to Staten Island? Why, you come back of course!
9. Visit SoHo and select a delicious picnic. Wander around some of the best delicatessens in town, and choose gourmet bread, cheese ham, veggies, fish, cakes and more. Come prepared with a big basket, plates, white linen napkins, cutlery and of course glasses for that great bottle of wine. Then head on over to, yes, Central Park, and find a nice spot in the shade to enjoy your al fresco lunch.
10. A secret restaurant. You’ll be sure to impress a foody date if you can snag a table at one of Manhattan’s so called “secret restaurants.” It’s going to be a challenge, because most aren’t listed, have huge waiting lists, and really, you have to know someone who knows someone to get a reservation. So start hunting down the likes of the Japanese Bohemian, Mexican La Esquina and a personal favorite, the very private Sakagura Japanese restaurant, with the most delicious food imaginable for even those people who hesitate to eat raw fish!
Manhattan - you have to love it - it's got just everything a lover needs!
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