Divine Dinner Party

Romantic Evening Ideas:
WOW that Someone Special

Looking for some romantic evening ideas that will please and tease, woo and pursue? You'd better be! Because whether an anniversary is coming up or Valentine's is around the corner, getting that night just right can make the difference between wondrous romance and a total fizzle.

Feel the pressure? You're not alone! Trying to find just the right concept or idea for a romantic evening leaves lots of folks feeling anything but romantic. The key here is preparation. Don't put off for tomorrow what you should have considered two months before. It's three times as hard to come up with good romantic evening ideas when you have no time. It also means your options are limited when it comes to making dinner or activity reservations.


Good Ideas for a Romantic Evening:
Who You're Planning For

So what kinds of things make the best romantic evening ideas? It completely depends on the person you're planning for! Some might love a couple's spa massage complete with rose petals and candlelight... while somebody else might laugh at this idea and call it too mushy. She might prefer a picnic in the park and a bouquet of daisies.

There is no one-size-fits-all romantic evening idea. The best romantic gestures are personal-- they're catered to the person you're trying to romance. So before you even begin to come up with a plan, think about what your partner loves to do... and plan accordingly.

A romantic evening with roses and candle light


Location: A Romantic Evening at Home or Out and About?

Some people like the idea of being out of the house for a romantic evening, doing something special. They don't need a ton of privacy to enjoy a romantic outing-- they just need you.

But others prefer a little more privacy for their romantic night. So if you think your partner would prefer a private affair, location is going to be very important... particularly if you don't want to be interrupted. This means the more secluded the better. Instead of a fancy dinner at that new restaurant downtown, opt for something home cooked or delivered... and don't forget to take phones off the hook and put out a "do not disturb on pain of death" sign on the front door!

While these little things seem like common sense, they're among the biggest things overlooked for romantic nights.


Fun and Creative Romantic Evening Ideas

1. A Romantic Scavenger Hunt

A creative way to celebrate an anniversary, Valentine's Day, or any special occasion is setting up romantic notes or clues for your partner. Create a little scavenger hunt! Every clue your partner finds hidden around the house will lead to a new location and eventually to the finale-- a wonderful romantic gift... or just YOU!

This is a really fun romantic evening idea, and one that's easy to customize to one person. Did you and your husband or wife get married on the beach? Place your notes inside sea shells. Does your guy love Nascar racing? Place your notes/clues inside Nascar Matchbox cars. The sky's the limit! Make it personal if you can, and play around with it. Some of my favorite ways to use this romantic evening idea are:

  • Attach each of your clues to one of a dozen long-stemmed roses. At the final destination will be a pretty vase and his or her gift.
  • Send your partner around, via clues (photos work well for this!), to different locations that mean something to the both of you. Have a wonderful romantic picnic set up at the final location.
  • Make each clue a little gift (lingerie, bath oils, gourmet snacks, gift certificates, etc.) and wrap the clue to next gift along with each one.
When placing notes or clues around the house in advance, be careful to put them where they aren't likely to be disturbed. And if you're leaving any outside, protect them from the elements. Oh, and consider having a partner in crime for this plan– someone who can make sure the final destination is prepared just the way you want it. Especially if the scavenger hunt will take place after, say, going out for a nice dinner (a great idea, by the way!)

2. Re-create a Date

Have a special night you shared together that will stick in your head forever? One of my favorite romantic evening ideas is to recreate that date at home. For instance, my husband and I ate the most wonderful meal of seared sea scallops on our honeymoon. Recreating that meal for him --along with the ambiance of that oceanside restaurant-- was one of the most romantic evenings we ever spent together. It almost topped the original!

Check here for ideas on cooking a romantic meal for your sweetie.

3. Take a Stroll

How often do you just take a moment to be outside in the quiet with your partner? One of my favorite --and one of the simplest-- romantic evening ideas is to just take an old fashioned nighttime stroll? Be it on the beach with waves crashing at your feet or beneath a star-studded sky in the forest, the immense beauty of nature is sure to inspire a few ideas. Even just walking around your neighborhood and looking at things in a new way is a wonderful way to bond.

4. 20 Questions for the Blind

This is a great way to make any old dinner-and-a-movie night into something special. Pick up your partner and blindfold them as soon as you can (a sexy blindfold --like a pair of panties-- can be a fun addition). Play a game of 20 questions along the way. Be purposefully elusive... it adds to the mystery! Exactly what happens at the end of this adventure is up to you – but make sure that it brings out that "oh wow" in your companion.

5. Make a Sacrifice

There are very simple ways to keep your romantic evening ideas from becoming cliche, the most important of which is being unpredictable. Wear that outfit he or she adores but you prefer to tuck in the back of the closet. Plan an activity that he or she finds fascinating, but you've always tended to avoid. This customizes your night and tells your partner just how much they mean to you-- because they'll know that everything you've done tonight has been for them. These little gestures mean everything.


Avoiding Major Romance Mistakes

Ok, romantic evening ideas have some very definite limitations. Do not go to places where you'll be surrounded by children, elevator music, nosy friends or family, or a place that houses bad memories. These ideas are sure to crash and burn.

Avoid Projection!

More than anything, you need to be careful of projection. Just because you love the Hard Rock Cafe doesn't mean it's the ideal location for your romantic evening out with your partner. Step back and ask yourself if you're planning for your partner... or more for your personal tastes. A true romantic night is all about fulfilling the other person's desires rather than your own.

Just because you find it romantic doesn't mean he or she will... so look outside yourself and plan for them!

The truth is, coming up with great romantic evening ideas isn't as difficult as you might think. But you've got to remember that the best ideas require some thoughtfulness and planning. Pay attention to little things your partner says and then build a whole fantasy around desires your partner has expressed. Romance is at least 75% listening. When you pay attention, you can come up with the perfect idea that will be remembered for years to come.

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