A delicious dinner, a box of chocolates, a little bling: these are the Valentine basics upon which we build. Add some world-class art, a cozy carriage ride, ice skating, massages, wine and comedy, and cupid has loosed his arrow. Indulge.
St. Louis’ magnificent 1,300-acre greenspace (larger than New York’s Central Park, thank you) is home to, among other stellar attractions, the Saint Louis Art Museum, where you can stroll hand-in-hand enjoying some of the greatest art the world has produced. Nothing like a spin on the ice to kindle the fires of love. Get spinning at the Steinberg Skating Rink, the Midwest’s largest, and then cuddle after. Head over to the nearby Central West End for lunch or dinner, drinks and dancing at the uber-romantic Mary Ann’s Tea Room, Sub Zero Vodka Bar and Club Viva.
West Port Plaza
This all-purpose enclave of office towers, restaurants, nightclubs and hotels was designed to offer a complete evening’s entertainment within a few easily traversed blocks, the romantic couple’s dream. Start the night at Paul Mineo’s Trattoria, an authentic Sicilian eatery serving generous portions of traditional Italian dishes, challenging your capacity to leave room for dessert. After-dinner entertainments abound. Get your laugh on at The Funny Bone Comedy Club or the Playhouse at West Port Plaza, which has served up comedies like “Menopause the Musical,” “Pump Boys and Dinettes,” "Graeme of Thrones” and “Disenchanted.” Or you could just groove to the smooth sounds at Backstreet Jazz & Blues Club, showcasing local and national artists.
Your downtown interlude begins on a Saint Louis Carriage Company horse-drawn carriage ride through downtown’s narrow streets—the colder the better. Hop on without a reservation in front of the Hyatt Hotel at 4th and Chestnut. Then remove the chill with a side-by-side spa experience at the Four Seasons Hotel Spa & Salon, where a long list of massages, foot scrubs, stone therapies and much more melts the tension away. Do some drinks at the spectacular Grand Hall at St. Louis Union Station or dine on seafood at Landry's (also at Union Station).
For something a little more risqué, may we suggest the Koken Art Factory’s Naughti Gras, featuring the St. Louis Erotic Art Show, Feb. 14-15. Then dance the night away at Casa Loma Ballroom most Fridays and Saturdays.
Wine, that lubricant of romance, deserves a visit at this time of year, and Missouri wine country beckons just 45 minutes outside St. Louis on Highway 94, where some nine wineries produce outstanding Midwest wine. Chandler Hill Vineyards features a big handsome tasting room, and Montelle Winery offers the best views. Both make award-winning wine. Stroll through charming little Augusta and shop at Stone Ledge Antiques.