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The Best Things to Do On Valentine’s Day

4 February 2022
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Pergola on the Wharf, Crossrail Place
Pergola on the Wharf, Crossrail Place

Romantic love

  • Watch Valentine’s Classics at Everyman Cinema

There’s nothing quite like watching a good film with a loved one, especially when food and drink are brought direct to your seat at Everyman Cinema so you don’t need to lift a finger. Think indulging in delicious burgers, pizza and sundaes whilst you enjoy Valentine’s classics such as The Notebook all from the comfort of luxurious sofas and armchairs. The Notebook follows the story of Noah and Allie, a young couple desperately in love but lacking the approval of Allie’s wealthy parents. When Noah goes off to serve in World War II, it seems to mark the end of their love affair, but nothing can keep them apart. Enjoy the film with a complimentary glass of prosecco on arrival and a sweet treat, as well as a little surprise gift!

  • Enjoy a romantic candlelight meal

Treat that someone special to an elegant candlelit meal at Pergola On The Wharf, complete with a string quartet playing classic love songs. The special three course Valentines set menu features indulgent sharing boards, succulent steak, delicious vegan options and sultry desserts. It’s sure to be a magical affair.

  • Those Who Train Together Stay Together

It might not be at the top of everyone’s list to-do this Valentine’s Day, but why not start the day as you mean to go on by attending a class together – and it means that you can indulge in food and drink later guilt-free as you know that burnt calories are already in the bank.

Luxury health club Third Space has a jam-packed schedule of classes to choose from – whether you opt for Force, a barbell and dumbbell class ‘designed to fatigue’, the slower-paced Pulse – a ballet-Pilates fusion – or a swim in its 23-metre pool. Cardio lovers should head to The Red Room at Barry’s – said to burn up to 1,000 calories a class, it’s a fitness fanatic’s dream.

 

Electric Shuffle, Cabot Square
Electric Shuffle, Cabot Square

 

Deep Friendship

  • Game at Wanyoo

Want to get that competitive spirit going? Or just try something new? Or you might already be a professional gamer in the making. Founded in 1998, pay a visit to Wanyoo, which has grown to become the largest esports studio chain in Asia, and is quickly expanding its offering across the globe. There’s also a Duo Room where you can compete not only against each other, but also challenge some of the 10 million member-plus community across the world. And with food and drink to refuel, it’s hard to leave after just one game – perfect to let you level up together.

  • Play a Game of Shuffleboard

Remember the shuffleboard that you used to play at the arcade? Well Electric Shuffle has revamped it and brought it firmly into the 21st century. Featuring impressive technology that identifies the exact location of the pucks on the table, it automatically tallies scores and guides players through three unique games via an interactive screen. You can also discuss post-match analysis over delicious sharing pizzas, platters and cocktails.

  • Food for friends

Looking for the perfect spot to enjoy great food with even better friends? The newly opened Caravan Canary Wharf provides an ideal setting for all day dining where you can sit back with friends and feast on everything from breakfast pancake stacks to elegant fish dishes, freshly roasted craft coffee to creative cocktails.

For other fantastic venues, look no further than Hawksmoor Wood Wharf for a mouth-watering meat menu consisting of the best British produce, set in an eco-friendly floating pavilion with stunning views of the water and Canary Wharf; Ibérica for a Spanish feast; Plateau Restaurant Bar & Grill for wow-factor cityscape views; Six by Nico for a six course menu of otherworldly eats and frivolous flavours, inspired by our most-loved childhood tales such as a Paddington Bear course focused on marmalade and a Beauty and the Beast course inspired by roses; and ROKA and Sticks’n’Sushi for the best of Japanese cuisine.

And to really get the celebrations going, opt for funky cocktails at The Alchemist, No35 Mackenzie Walk or The Parlour, or enjoy a delicious dinner and refined drinks to live jazz performed by ‘The Spirit of Luther And The Love Gods Of Soul’: Fil Straughan And His Band at Boisdale of Canary Wharf.

  • Explore a neon exhibition

 

Ice Rink Canary Wharf, Canada Square Park
Ice Rink Canary Wharf, Canada Square Park

 

Family love

  • Family ice skating fun at Ice Rink Canary Wharf

Ice skating really is fun for all the family, so why not spend some quality time together as you skate beneath the iconic skyline in the heart of Canary Wharf. New for 2022, you can also add some magic with new light skates, featuring colourful LEDS attached to each skate. And with a roof covered with twinkling fairy lights, you can brighten up the ice rink whatever the weather. To mark the Valentine’s Day occasion, you can also skate along to all your favourite cheesy love songs and enjoy a free glass of fizz with your adult skate tickets after your skate. Don’t miss out, get your tickets now!

  • For the love of art

Explore London’s largest collection of outdoor public art, and this Valentine’s Day pay particular attention to the artworks that depict love. One of these is Jon Buck: Returning to Embrace, which appears to show a couple locked together, gazing into each other’s eyes, but on closer examination reveals a strange fusion of forms, their bodies so far intertwined as to have become a single organism.

Another, Gillie & Marc: Tandem Lovers showcases how two iconic characters, Rabbitwoman and Dogman who met while travelling, love exploring and cycling but decide to travel by bike so they can zip along while being environmentally conscious at the same time. The tandem bike is their favourite as they must work as one.

There’s also a  Children’s Art Trail featuring 12 pieces of art that provide big inspiration for young minds, plus a handy map to show their locations.

 

London Grace, Canada Place
London Grace, Canada Place

Self-love

  • Have a Treatment

For Valentine’s Day pampering, why not book yourself a massage at Third Space Spa, with 25, 50 and 80-minute treatment options available. Alternatively, head over to Canada Place for a manicure and a glass of fizz at London Grace. Lay back and relax with a HydraFacial from the best skin experts at Sk:n, or enjoy some cosmetic treatments from the multi-award-winning Thérapie Clinic. Not feeling your best? Rejuvenate by taking a trip to Get A Drip where you’ll be feeling better in no time after one of their multiple vitamin drips.

  • Refresh with a makeover

Give yourself a fresh look with a visit to Blink Brow Bar, where you can take advantage of brow shaping, tinting and laminating, eyelash curling and lifting, and threading, as well as a variety of other beauty treatments.

Locks needing a cut or colour, or simply a Valentine’s Day blow dry? Book an appointment at cutting-edge hair salon Jon Hala. Men need not feel left out either – with Adam Grooming Atelier offering a classic barber’s experience from its Cabot Place branch, you can look sharp this Valentine’s Day.

 

Valentine’s at home

 

If looking for something more suited for being at home? bellow are some suggestions on what you can do to make Valentine’s special from the comfort of your home.

  1. Breakfast in Bed

Nothing quite says it’s a special occasion than breakfast in bed. Rise from your slumber and prepare your favourite first meal of the day to enjoy alongside a glass of orange juice and a cafetière of fresh coffee or a pot of tea for a leisurely start to your Sunday morning. To make it even easier this year, Marks & Spencer has launched a Valentine’s Day hamper that among other products contains heart-shaped crumpets, its famous ‘Love Sausage’ and peach and passionfruit Bellinis; costing £30, order online for delivery on 13 or 14 February. Alternatively have brekkie delivered to your door – The Breakfast Club offers everything from a classic Full English to fluffy American pancakes.

 

  1. Go on a Treasure Hunt

Add a bit of fun to your at-home Valentine’s Day and give your other half a map, so that they can then hunt for clues hidden around the house that will ultimately lead them to a special gift. For the ‘treasure’ and to stay in-keeping with the love theme, why not opt for a heart-shaped box of chocolates from Charbonnel et Walker? Or push the boat out and treat him to a special bottle of aftershave or a bottle of perfume from Penhaligon’s for her? Ultimate romantics can even pen a love letter using a calligraphy set; order online from Montblanc.

Alternatively, sugar fiends will also be happy in the knowledge that the ultimate prize could be the popular heart-shaped Krispy Kremes, which are back this year and can also be delivered to your door, as can Crosstown’s Valentine’s Day Box. Plus, don’t forget Lola’s Cupcakes for a whole host of treats including its classic giant chocolate cookie, a layer cake or even postable brownies.

 

  1. Play games together

Board games do not need to equal boring. Get into the competitive spirit with classic games such as Scrabble, Ticket to Ride or even the couple’s version of Monopoly, Couple-opoly; whatever your fancy, browse online and click and collect at Robert Dyas, or for home delivery, Oliver Bonas has a varied selection. Alternatively, create your own Mr and Mrs to see how much you really know each other. Or for pure scandal, choose Cards Against Humanity – those who have played it know. An alternative easy option is the Post-it Note detective game, where each person has to guess the identity of a famous figure that has been scribbled in secret and then stuck onto their forehead.

 

  1. Print your own love story

Bringing literature to unexpected places, the Short Story Stations in Canary Wharf have had a Valentine’s Day makeover, so those who are struggling to muster up a romantic vibe this year (and who would blame you – it is 2021, after all) will be sure to get into the spirit once they hear a tale of love or poem of passion. All you need to do is pick your reading length of either one, three or five minutes using the touch-free buttons, then the machine will print a story at random.

 

  1. Getting Crafty

Whilst we are all staying at home – and if you have time on your hands – why not make the most of your space by adorning it with decorations to get you into the Valentine’s Day festivities? You could get crafty and look online; Canary Wharf is running card-making workshops where you can learn from downloadable step-by-step guides by Heaps + Stacks which show you how to make the most of materials that you can find around the house to make cards to send to your loved ones; Make a Marble Valentine Card and Make a Pressed Flowers Valentine Card.

Alternatively, deck out your space by buying eye-catching adornments such as embellished heart decorations from the homeware section of Monsoon. And, in the evening, if you have outside space, why not purchase a fire pit, wrap yourselves in blankets and toast marshmallows in front of the open fire?

 

  1. Fondue à deux

Whether you opt for sweet or savoury – or even both – the 1960s and 70s favourite is back! For a cheese fondue, dip roasted potatoes, bread and meatballs for the ultimate gourmet meal, while for those with a sweet tooth, nothing quite beats plunging strawberries, bananas or marshmallows into melted chocolate. For the majority who would go for a dessert over a starter every time, Hotel Chocolat has a range of sets that you can choose from that can be delivered to your door.

 

  1. Have a date night in

Just because you’re spending 14 February between your own four walls, it doesn’t mean that you can’t don your finest attire – why not shop Zara’s latest pieces and pick up via click and collect? – light the candles and have a romantic date night in.

Whether you’re opting for a homecooked meal, getting fine dining delivered – Boisdale and Ibérica have cook-at-home dinner kits, as does The Parlour, which also offers weekend brunches and cocktail-making kits – or simply having takeout with your international favourites from Wahaca or Royal China, or a delicious burger from Five Guys or The Vurger Co., make an occasion of it; after all, it’s bound to stand out from all of the other nights that seem to blur together at the moment! Also don’t forget the wine; order online or click and collect from Nicolas Wine Merchant.

 

  1. Plan your future holidays – and life – together

Most people are missing travelling at the moment and although it might feel as though plane journeys and holidays are a long way off, it can help to lift spirits simply by thinking that life won’t always be this way, and eventually it will be possible to travel once again. So, whether it’s a city that you’ve always wanted to explore or an exotic destination that you’ve been eager to visit, pen down the destinations you wish to go to once it is safe to do so, or why not speak to the travel agents Trailfinders to help make your future dreams a reality?

If travel’s not your thing, simply write down your hopes and dreams for the future – they can be as down-to-earth or as fantastical as you wish.

 

  1. Opt for classic gifts

If all else fails or life gets in the way, you can’t go wrong with a classic bunch of Valentine’s Day flowers; Waitrose & Partners and Marks & Spencer have big bouquets of roses that are sure to guarantee the wow factor. Or to pull out all of the stops, book an appointment in-store with David M Robinson or Watches of Switzerland while fine jewellery brand Vashi is offering digital consultancies.

Find further inspiration of what to do this Valentine’s Day

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