Alternative Valentine's Day: Date Night Inspiration

Finding the perfect Valentine’s Day date is full of pressure. This list of ‘alternative’ ideas may help alleviate some of that V-day Stress!

Ah, February, a time for winter’s chill, groundhogs and forced romantic gestures. Finding the perfect Valentine’s Day date that strikes the perfect balance between super cool hangout and cringeworthy cheese-fest can be tricky. If you’re new to the Island and are looking for some Valentines inspiration, we’ve put together a list of our favourite alternative date night ideas sure to impress even the most discerning of daters.

1. Bands, Burlesque, Beer and Barbeque

Compton Vaults opened this past summer and packs a lot into the cosy venue.  Reviews describe their offerings as delicious, but ‘dangerous’- so make sure to leave the car at home, take a taxi and imbibe to your heart’s content!

Valentine’s weekend sees two awesome events to choose from (or do both, it’s Valentine’s Day after all, might as well treat yourself!)

On Friday night, catch indie rock band, Phil Reynolds and The Dearly Departed from 9pm til midnight. Saturday is Burlesque and BBQ, £18 per ticket- includes show and a delicious BBQ box. This one is sure to be a little different from a standard the normal candlelit dinner.

2. A B B A!

Okay, we may be a little bit biased… but Abba rules. Surely everyone can make a little space in their hearts for some 70s nostalgia? On February 16th, check out Planet Abba Tribute Band at Peel Centenary Centre from 8pm to 10:15. For £17 you can see one of the best Abba tributes around (AND show off your sweet platforms and white jumpsuit to your date!)

3. More Live Music

Island band, Final Cut sure has a busy weekend. You can hear their covers and originals at either Quids Inn (Douglas) on Friday or The Union (Castletown) on Saturday.

Expect supercharged power trio riffing with flavours of Led Zeppelin, Muse, The Black Keys, Foo Fighters and everything else in-between. You’re definitely in for a very eclectic night of terrific tunes!

4. BYOB candlelit date night

We’re a total sucker for some world-class sushi, not to mention a restaurant that lets us bring our own wine to dinner - and luckily a Douglas restaurant has our back!! Asia Fresh is offering a 5 course (yes, FIVE!) tasting menu for £35pp. There are two table times to choose from on Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights. Customers can bring their own bottle with no corkage charge, which is great for those of us who are picky of their tipple.

Asia Fresh have vegan, gluten-free and fish-free options available as well (But for the seafood lovers, the sushi is ace!).

5. Get your sweat on

For the active couples, you’ll definitely want to go to the Noble’s Park Run, Valentine’s Day Run. It’s on Saturday morning and is a great way to kick off a day of festivities. Noble’s Park Run is part of the Parkrun events and takes place every Saturday. It’s a 5km run that’s a race against the clock (not each other). All of the runs are completely free- you just need to register online.

For the singletons, do not despair, we’ve got something that will be perfect. Island ‘play’ group Active Souls are organising a special V-day event for all the single souls amongst us. Get ready for a good ol’ fashioned game of British Bulldog or dodgeball just like you played in Primary School. This time though, don’t pull someone’s hair if you like them. #KissGirlChase

6. Delicious Valentine’s

Cocktail bar, Bath and Bottle invites you to get ‘Love Drunk’ with a dessert pop-up by Smoo. These themed sundaes are made for two, so it’s your choice to share… or not! With flavours like ‘I Love You S’more’, ‘Squeeze Me’ and ‘Miso Love You’, you’re sure to enjoy some sweet, sweet indulgence. On February 14th and 15th, head to Douglas with your date for drinks and ice cream (now THAT is a match made in heaven!)

7. Put on your Blue suede shoes…

Ever think about learning some dance moves? Now’s the time. Grab your partner and hit the dance floor with Swing in the Isle and Ceroc.

Swing Isle of Man has lessons Monday and Wednesday nights followed by a ‘social’ where you can dance the night away with your newfound rhythm.

Ceroc is an international dance club with over 200 venues across the UK. With elements of jive, rock and salsa, this style can be used to dance to any type of music. Classes are on Monday nights in Douglas. You can take this class on Monday and show off your moves at a pub on Saturday!

8. Romance and Bingo

Palace Hotel and Casino is offering a Valentine’s Day Special: overnight stay with sparkling wine and chocolates, a 3 course dinner at their Paragon Restaurant and a full English breakfast. Okay, so this one doesn’t sound as ‘alternative’ as the others, but hear us out. They have BINGO! Despite the intensity of ‘eyes down’, nothing  says ‘I love you’ like bingo with your babe! (We’re not joking- we did this last year and it was amazing!)

You can have some drinks, channel Bonnie & Clyde by winning some cash, eat a delicious dinner and just have a light-hearted fun time with your Valentine.

9. Classical Music with a Twist

On Friday, February 16th, get down to Erin Arts Centre to catch Duo B!z'art, a Belgian piano duo, performing ‘An American in Paris’. The Belgians behind this duet are Andre Roe and Geoffrey Baptiste and they are seriously talented. They tour around the world and dazzle audiences as they play one single piano (and sometimes two!) with great virtuosity.

10. Rock, Roll and Blues

Saturday. 9:30pm. The Railway Station Hotel. Be there.

Island band, Broken Rooster (coolest band name ever) take to the stage with a mix of covers and originals with their 5 person band. Be ready for some rock, blues and indie covers as you grab a pint at the Station Hotel.

11. Sing… badly.

Rounding out our list is the ever popular, ever refined- karaoke. Saturday night at 9:30pm join Mike Faragher Karaoke at The Queens in Douglas for fun, laughs and a few off-key versions of “I Will Always Love You”. Mike has one of the biggest song books for karaoke, so come on down and serenade your sweetie with some early 90's rap or the quintessential karaoke library of Frank Sinatra.

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