Although your special someone deserves to be wined and dined day in and day out, if there ever was an occasion to go all out, it’s Valentine’s Day. Yes, it may be an exercise in consumerism, but does it really matter, if it will make your loved one smile?
February 14th is just around the corner and if you’re ready to celebrate the international day of love, why not say “I love you” in a special way? Whether it's a romantic meal at a restaurant, a special dessert or even taking a private flight, here are the best ways to wine and dine your lover this Valentine's Day.
Valentine’s Day With Heletranz
For the most unforgettable Valentine’s Day ever, take your lover on a private escape with Heletranz. Forget the overcrowded restaurants and whip away to one of three phenomenal escapes. Take a scenic helicopter ride to a private beach on Great Barrier Island, where you can relax and unwind with a picnic. Or, fly over black sands of the rugged West Coast and land at The Hunting Lodge where you can enjoy a three-course set menu. And if you’re all about the romance, fly into the sunset and pop a bottle of champagne as the sky transitions through rich shades of pinks and purples. Go on, Valentine’s Day should be all about the two of you, after all.
Two Become One At Giapo
Gift your lover a piece of your heart, ice-cream style. Giapo’s bringing back their famed Valentine’s Day ice cream, which sees two cones decorated with half a chocolate heart each. Bring these cones together, and the two shapes complete each other (kinda like you and your lover), forming a full heart. What’s more, the flavour inside is a true reflection on love. Consisting of a chocolate brulee with a streusel of passionfruit and jalapeno swirled through, it’s sweet, it’s sour, and it’s hot.
One Plus One
Alright, we all know this scenario—it’s Valentine’s Day and you still haven’t found your special someone. Not to worry, One Plus One has your back—you won’t be spending this Valentine’s alone, after all. Pop along to K Rd’s Raynham Park and mingle with other singles to banging DJ sets and a hilarious emcee. The event promises a line-up of competitions designed to bring you close to other attendees, so there won’t be any awkwardness or need for icebreakers. Grab a drink and enjoy yourself.
Buko Valentine’s Degustation
Charm the pants off your date at pop-up restaurant Buko. Pairing up with luxury chocolate brand Whittaker’s, you’ll be treated to a starter of oysters followed by a four-course dessert menu. The menu will be kept secret until the night itself, but we promise—it’ll get you lovers in the right mood. Starting with aphrodisiacs of champagne and oysters and finishing off with chocolate, this is one dinner that’s sure to get the endorphins flowing.
For those of your looking to spend V Day in the comfort of your own home, check out FED’s Valendine. Choose from a two, three, or four-course heat-and-eat menu to be delivered to your doorstep on February 14th, with the option of wine pairings. Put on a slow record, light some candles and gaze into each other’s eyes as you devour the feast.
Valentine’s Day At The Sugar Club
Nothing screams romance like a dinner in the sky. Take in all the beauty of Auckland from 53 stories high at SKYCITY’s Sugar Club. Enjoy a glass of rose on arrival, followed by a seven-course tasting menu designed to showcase the best of New Zealand produce. With a combination of stunning views, decadent food, and of course, your company, your date will be swooning in no time.
Italians know a thing or two about love. They also know a thing or two about food. So, if you can’t take your lover to Italy for Valentine’s, take them to Andiamo instead. Relax in the cosy dining room and sink your teeth into some of Italy’s greatest dishes—from pasta and risottos to gnocchi, pizza and fresh bread. Accompanied, of course, by smooth Italian wines.
Valentine’s Day At Bellota
Treat your lover to some Spanish loving at Bellota, complete with red roses, delectable tapas and Cava on arrival. Cosy up in one of their intimate booths and celebrate your love, whispering “te quiero tanto” (“I love you so much”) into your lover’s ear all night long.
Your lover deserves nothing but the best, so why not take them to one of Auckland’s finest establishments, Harbourside. This year, the revered restaurant offers a Valentine’s menu consisting of four courses and a glass of Mumm Rose. With top Kiwi produce handled by some of the best chefs in the country, the night’s sure to be a success.
Cibo is all about unadulterated pleasure and relaxation. This Valentine's Day, the restaurant welcomes you to indulge in their five-course tasting menu, which features all the Kiwi favourites of crayfish, lamb and pavlova. Combining a modern interior with food cooked to perfection and attentive service, you’ll spend the night feeling like royalty.
Dine beachside at St Helier’s eatery Porch and you’ll be able to follow up dinner with a romantic beach walk under the stars. Sitting across the road from St Helier’s Beach, the restaurant offers stunning ocean views, with Rangitoto on the horizon. Take in the beautiful view and fill your belly with magnificent food all at once. Porch serves some of the best-cured seafood in town, as well as sharing platters filled with all sorts of delicacies.
If it’s true what they say, and the way to one’s heart really is through their stomach, then you can’t have a better wingman than Ostro. With sweeping views of the harbour, Josh Emett’s famed eatery is home to some of the most stirring ocean views in town, which serve as an inspiration to their menu. The place does justice to all meals, but seafood is where they really shine. You can’t go past their oysters, cured fish, prawn ravioli or lobster and snapper pie. Treat your date to a night at Ostro and we promise, they will be more than thankful.
Dans Le Noir
Looking to impress your date with something unusual? Give Dans Le Noir a go. Treat yourself, and your date, to a sensory experience like no other as you dine in the dark. Taste every note of flavour, feel every texture and take in all the aromas. You won’t be able to see, but your senses of taste and smell will peak, resulting in a dining experience like no other. Let loose and open-up to your Valentine as shyness dissolves in the dark. Besides, you won’t need to worry about having salad stuck in your teeth.
Looking for more Valentine's Day inspiration? Here are Auckland's most romantic restaurants.