This isn’t your typical list of date night ideas.
This list is for celebrating an important relationship milestone. Perhaps when you’re planning a grand proposal or you just got engaged? Maybe you just want to really treat yourselves. Or simply when you want anything other than the ordinary.
(1) date night ideas – luxury dining
There’s no denying that London has some of the best restaurants in the world. If you love food as much as I do, you’re going to look for restaurants when thinking about date night ideas. Whatever cuisine you’re looking for, you’ll surely find one that will cater to your taste. From lavish tasting menus to exotic chef specialties, you’re spoiled for choice no matter how discerning your palate may be. Fine dining is easily the best option if you’re thinking of going for a date night the traditional way. Here are some of my favourites.
michelin tasting menu at hélène darroze
One of my favourite luxuries is fine dining accompanied by a tasting menu. It’s a great way to explore special dishes that you might not even consider if you’re limited to a three-course set menu. Hélène Darroze at The Connaught is the way to go if you want to pull all the stops. The contemporary interior of this three Michelin-starred restaurant was elegantly designed by Pierre Yovanovitch and decorated with two collages by Damien Hirst. Enjoy a seasonal tasting menu created from local produce specially selected by Hélène Darroze herself. Level up your experience by dining at the Chef’s table, a 10-seater marble table placed right next to the open kitchen. And if you’d like a private dinner for two, the sommelier’s table adjoining the wine cellar is available for private hire.
sustainable luxury at petersham nurseries café
Petersham Nurseries Café in Richmond is one of my favourite places to dine. Not only because of their scrumptious food but also because of their commitment to sustainability. They received their Green Michelin Star in 2021 for their continued efforts to improve their ecological footprint. If you’re on the lookout for sustainable luxury date night ideas, this is the choice for you. They practice organic farming, base their menus on a slow food ethos, use seasonal local produce, and recycle almost all their waste. Their Richmond Café and nursery is about an hour or so from Central London but totally worth the trip. However, if that’s too far for you, there’s also The Petersham restaurant at the Floral Court in Covent Garden.
dining with a view at shangri la at the shard
For a romantic dinner with a panoramic view of the capital, the Shangri La at The Shard is your best bet. On the 35th floor, Tíng restaurant offers contemporary cuisine combining British and Asian cultures for a luxury dining experience. Do you fancy having a double (or triple) date with a group of friends? Then you might want to go for the Dining in the Sky experience. It includes a welcome glass of champagne upon your arrival, a three-course set menu including Tíng Restaurant’s signature dishes, and refreshments (which already includes half a bottle of wine)
(2) date night ideas – a luxury cinema experience
Why not try a luxury cinema experience for a relaxed but fancy date night? My top pick is Electric Cinema. It has two locations in London: White City and Portobello. While both locations come with luxurious cinema armchairs and cashmere blankets, I personally prefer the Portobello branch. It’s just a few steps from the famous Notting Hill antique shops in Portobello Road and housed in one of the oldest film theatres in the UK. There are 6 two-seater sofas in the front row and 3 in the back row. Perfect for couples on a romantic date, if you ask me. And if you’re a Soho House or Soho Friends member, you get additional benefits. That includes discounted cinema tickets and four complimentary screenings per week. Not bad!
(3) date night ideas – an ancient bath and underground spa
Luxury spas are becoming common these days. But have you heard of ancient baths? If not, then you’re in for a treat. This is probably my favourite among all the date night ideas on this list. Aire Ancient Baths are well-known for their candle-lit temples of rest and relaxation located in major cities around the world. In 2021, they finally made their way to London. Tucked inside an unassuming historic building on Robert Street, Aire Ancient Baths London is truly a unique and otherworldly underground spa. Entering the premises feels like stepping into a different world far away from the busy streets of Covent Garden.
Their signature Ancient Bath Experience involves a self-paced tour through seven different baths at varying temperatures using the concept of thermal hydrotherapy. Did you know that exposure to water at different extreme and mild temperatures create a relaxing and restorative effect on the mind and body? Experience it by going through the Tepidarium (36ºC/97ºF), Caladium (40ºC/102ºF), Frigidarium (14ºC/57ºF and 10ºC/50ºF), Vaporium (Peppermint-scented steam room), Balneum (thousand jet baths), and Flotarium (dead sea levitating experience).
If that’s not enough, there’s a multitude of other relaxation options. You can go for a relaxing massage ranging from 30 to 75-minute sessions or a holistic scrub ranging from 30 to 60-minute sessions. Their signature experiences include the Argan massage (regenerative using Argan oil) and the Himalayan Salt ritual (body wrap and massage using Himalayan salt stones).
For the ultimate luxury experience, there’s the Couples Wine Bath experience. You can get 30-minutes of access to a wine bath (your choice of cava or red wine) while enjoying a cranial massage. Then enjoy a 60-minute full-body massage with grapeseed oil and finish your night with the Ancient Bath Experience.
(4) date night ideas – luxury train date
When it comes to luxury, Belmond is well-known for its hotels and glamorous trains. Go back in time and turn date night into a luxury romantic day out. And what better way to spend a day than in one of their glamorous train carriages.
One of their signature trips is a luxurious round-trip aboard the British Pullman train. It even comes with a steam-hauled locomotive. You get a glass of welcome champagne as soon as you board. Then a luxury five-course lunch which you can enjoy while marveling at the beauty of the English countryside. Of course, it comes with half a bottle of wine and other refreshments and treats including coffee, tea, and petits fours.
If you’re feeling adventurous, then you can choose the trips that include murder mystery entertainment. Prizes await you if you can prove yourself to be the best detective on board!
There’s a luxury champagne afternoon tea option if that’s your style. You get treats created by Luminary Bakery in collaboration with Claire Carke MBE, half a bottle of Veuve Clicquot champagne, coffee, tea, and petit fours. As a bonus, couples will go home with a copy of Luminary Bakery’s Rising Hope – a book filled with 70 delicious recipes that you can try at home and countless stories from the Luminary family.
date night ideas – links and getting there:
Hélène Darroze at The Connaught is at the corner of Mount Street and Carlos Place W1K 2AL, a quick 20-min walk to Bond Street or Green Park stations. Metered parking is available in Mount Street and Berkeley Square, as well as in Park Lane (Q-Park).
Petersham Café is at the Petersham Nurseries in Richmond, TW10 7AQ. Parking is available on Church Lane but is limited. If traveling by public transportation, Richmond station is a quick 20-min walk along the Thames embankment or a 15-min bus ride on bus no. 65. Petersham Nurseries Covent Garden is at Floral Court WC2E 8JD and is a 2min walk from Covent Garden station.
Shangri La at the Shard is at 32 London Bridge Street, SE1 9SG, 5mins away from the London Bridge station. Valet parking is available for a minimum of two hours.
Electric Cinema Portobello branch is at 191 Portobello Road, W11 2ED, 7mins walk from Ladbroke Grove station. The White City Branch is at 2 Television Centre, 1010 Wood Lane, W12 7FR and is a quick 2-mins walk from White City Tube station.
Aire Ancient Baths is located at 2-3 Robert Street, WC2N 6BH Covent Garden. The nearest tube stations are Charing Cross (5min walk) and Embankment (3min walk). Make sure you arrive 30 minutes before your appointment to allow yourself enough time for checking in, answering the health questionnaire, and changing clothes. Refer to the official website for detailed guidelines.
The British Pullman departs from the London Victoria Station.