Dating in Vancouver can be daunting but once you manage to snag a guy or gal to share some fun times with, the rest is a cool Pacific breeze. I spend a lot of time downtown so this month I’m focusing my regular Dating in Vancouver feature on Vancouver’s city centre.
As we ease back into fall and likely back to school (for ourselves or the bambinos), back to a more hectic work schedule, I thought I would focus this month’s dates on maximizing R&R. So sit back, read on and get inspired to beckon your sweetie to partake in one or all three of these date night must-dos.
Double Relaxation - What’s better than going for a visit to the spa? A spa visit for two. A few downtown hotels have this option covered.
The Willow Stream at the Fairmont Pacific Rim has a few different couples treatments. Pick your massage types, lay down on parallel massage tables and relax for the traditional Side-by-Side Couple’s Massage. Or get creative with a ‘Ritual for Two’, a 90 minute package that takes place in the Willow Stream’s uber-luxe spa suite. Following your therapist’s instructions, couples choose from a variety of masks, scrubs and baths, then are left to perform the treatments on each other. After the DIY spa session, you receive side-by-side, full-body aromatherapy massages.
The Wedgewood Spa at the Wedgewood Hotel also features a number of spa packages for parties of two.
Get Raw – Sometimes the best stress-therapy can include paint, sushi and some wine or sake. Enter Raw Canvas.
Each Wednesday is date night the bistro-come-art-studio in the centre of Yaletown entertains couples for a night of combined painting. For the price of a small canvas, parties of two can share a medium sized canvas and paint their worries away. A visit to Raw Canvas includes painting smocks, access to palettes, brushes and paints. You’re also welcome to have a glass of wine or cup of tea as you create your paired-up masterpiece.
After your visit to Raw Canvas, continue with the raw theme and grab some sake and sashimi at Blue Water Café and Raw Bar.
Dance & Feast – One of the best ice-breakers for a first or second date is busting a move, then busting a beltline. Harbour Dance Centre on Granville Street offers dance classes for all kinds of rhythmically challenged (myself included). Whether you want to enhance your salsa, hip hop, jazz, tap and pussycat doll moves Harbour Dance is a great place to start. There’s nothing more humbling nor impressive watching your potential love interest swivelling his/her hips or tapping their heels.
After a dance class, head to Cibo Trattoria at the Moda Hotel to feast. My partner and I were lucky enough to experience their six course tasting menu this summer and it was a feast. The vegetables, all sourced from local farms in the Pemberton Valley, were bursting with freshness and the mains region and season season-specific (think seared Coho, chantrelle mushroom pappardelle and wild boar from Northern B.C.).
You can also purchase a complementary wine pairings at Cibo Trattoria complete with historical and tasting note explanation from Cibo’s lovely GM and sommelier Steve Edwards. Take your time, sip your vino and recount your new dance moves as you nibble your way through six decadent courses. And demand the Campari-infused tiramisu to end – it’s a great way to finish off your date.