When it comes to creating a memorable evening, it is important to choose the right location for your date. The venue should have the right atmosphere, be sophisticated, yet not obvious.
The biggest mistake men make when choosing date locations is not drawing the distinction between a 1st date and a 2nd date location. The aim of the first date is merely to see if you have enough compatibility to enjoy each other’s company for an hour. The first date is therefore merely a filter mechanism. A formal sit down meal is not appropriate; nor is a setting where it would be awkward for either of you to end the date early, if it were not working.
Here we have a mix of first and second date locations that will be sure to leave a positive impression on your date.
Luca, Clarkenwell London
At Luca, there are two separate areas for booking, depending on the atmosphere you are going for: the bar is vibrant and fun with an aperitivo style menu which will make the date more relaxed. The main restaurant, however, offers a more traditional and formal atmosphere with a full course Italian menu and top notch service, the perfect environment to share a romantic meal.The overall style evokes a timeless sense of design that resembles a fashionable restaurant in Milan.
The Orangery, Kensington Palace Gardens
The Orangery was once the setting for Queen Anne’s court and is surrounded by beautiful formal gardens in the grounds of Kensington Palace. But despite this grandeur, it’s amazingly relaxed. There is zero pretension and no excessive formality. You can have lunch, or simply go for drinks. It is also the only royal palace in London where you can enjoy a traditional afternoon tea.
Rules, Covent Garden
Rules is the oldest restaurant in London founded in 1798, but for a first date it also offers a very fine bar upstairs taking you back in time to a more elegant age. Despite its location right in the centre of London, the upstairs bar is astonishingly unknown. Rules is the quintessential English establishment.
Sardinia is the Mediterranean’s second largest island and its seafood is amongst the best in the world. Yet it is surprisingly difficult to find Sardinian restaurants abroad. Sardinian migrants have tended to play it safe and establish generic Italian restaurants, rather than focusing specifically on more unknown Sardinian cuisine.
Olivomare is a rare treat offering exceptional seafood whilst retaining the atmosphere of a friendly local restaurant and the legendary food critic A.A Gill, described it as one of his favourites.
Windsor Castle Pub, Notting Hill
This pub has been here since 1826 and still retains much of its original décor and atmosphere with oak wood panelling salvaged from a 19th century ship. In recognition of this, it is an English Heritage Grade II listed building. It is one of the few pubs in London that is as good in the summer as it is in the winter. In the summer you can sip Pimm’s in the pleasant beer garden outside and in winter you can sip mulled wine by the real log fires indoors. It always attracts a smart crowd and offers a great selection of traditional British drinks and food.
Archipelago Restaurant, Fitzrovia
Probably not the best place if you are vegetarian, this very eccentric restaurant serves exotic meats, such as crocodile and kangaroo. Very intimate and decorated with an eclectic mix of artifacts; this restaurant won’t be forgotten.
If you want the most traditionally British experience imaginable, then Simpson’s-in-the-Strand is the number one place to go. An evening here is the closest you will get to experiencing the Victorian age.