What spells romance to you? A carriage ride? A poem written and read to you? A moonlit, spooky ghost tour, clinging to someone’s hand? Dancing and dinner? Or perhaps wearing period clothing while walking through a historic, living museum? Romance is a personal thing. And sometimes, for some, it doesn’t come easily or naturally. But, on Valentine’s Day, it is necessary to step up your game. And in Williamsburg, the chance to be romantic and spoil someone can range from luxury (listed first) to almost free. Here are some ideas, for Valentine’s 2015:
- Overnight getaway! I have two suggestions – Colonial Williamsburg or the Winery. The Couples Package for Valentine’s weekend, in Colonial Williamsburg, includes brunch and a carriage ride. Alternatively, get away from the American bustle and stay at a European-style boutique hotel, on the Williamsburg Winery. Stay at the Wedmore Place – a European-inspired country hotel, that is nestled in the winery, itself, the hotel has uniquely decorated rooms with period furnishings and a special breakfast served in the Café Provençal – the property’s French restaurant. I recommend the Winery tour – and sample one from each so you can try all the wines: Reserve Wine Tasting and Fine Wine Tasting – a slight difference in price and a different glass for each – both come with a take-home wine glass, etched with The Williamsburg Winery’s logo. Their Valentine’s Day special includes a tour, dinner, breakfast and one of their amazing rooms.
- Dancing (and dinner)! The Regency Room, at The Williamsburg Inn has a dinner that includes a jazz band and a dance floor, at this unique and posh hotel. This is the truest luxury on the list – but it will be a night that she will remember. Valentine’s Dinner includes wine pairings with every course.
- Dinner! Two choices include French or seafood. The French menu at Le Yaca is top notch and terribly romantic. The classic three-course dinner is presented as an art, at the newly located building in High Street. Look on their website for the regular menu, this one is for Valentine’s Day. The seafood at Bonefish Grille, in the New Town area of Williamsburg, is eclectic and yummy, even though the local’s favorite is the Bang Bang Shrimp, the menu for Valentine’s Day is unique.
- Dinner Cruise! Sunset Cruise on the Alliance – just kidding – as the Schooner Alliance, that sails on the York River, on the waterfront of Yorktown, doesn’t come back until the end of March.
- Standing dinner! The Blue Talon Bistro is creating a romantic pavilion by putting up a tent and grilling oysters in the alley behind the restaurant. Live music, champagne and Cosmopolitans will be flowing freely. TIP: no reservations for this event – take some pressure off. This event will also run Friday.
- Carriage Ride! A carriage ride can be booked, in Colonial Williamsburg, most afternoons, for $20 per person. Carriage rides operate daily, weather permitting. All carriage rides begin at the Lumber House Ticket Office, in the Revolutionary City.
- Live Theater! Two choices – high school and community. Lafayette High School is presenting an award winning play of “Unexpected Tenderness,” at The Kimball Theater. The students have won two awards and are now preparing to go to the national competition in Tennessee, this March. The Williamsburg Players are presenting “A Valentine to the Theatre: Heart and Music.” This production shows through the eyes of the performer, from auditions, rehearsals, opening night through the final performance – the ups, the downs, the drama and the emotion.
- Movies! Two choices – at a Movie theater and the other at the public library. Dinner and a movie at The Movie Tavern at High Street is a great experience. The chairs swivel and roll and Fifty Shades of Grey (this year’s dark romantic film) will be playing, by then. Grab a beer or a margarita and a burger, pizza, or a spicy-buffalo chicken wrap and enjoy the show. Or go see Warm Bodies – a romantic zombie (??) movie at The Williamsburg Regional Library. This movie almost created its own genre. Not my cup of tea, but clearly this kind of romance (??) is here to stay.
- Paint! Paint together at Wine and Design because they are having a special event themed “Palm Trees,” for Valentine’s Day. You bring your own wine and food and each paint the same scene, while the teacher assists and suggests. I haven’t done this but feel comfortable recommending, because I have many people tell me that even though they thought that the couldn’t paint and thought it wouldn’t be fun, they left feeling really good about the experience and thought that it was a high-quality date-night experience. Hmmm?
- Ghost Tour! Hold her close – on a spooky tour of Williamsburg’s Ghosts! Learn of the ghosts that still haunt the taverns and historic buildings of Colonial Williamsburg. Your guide, on this lantern-lit evening tour will spin ghostly tales from days of old. Anyone who enjoys mysterious history and a good story (with a hint of creepy) will love a Ghost Tour in Williamsburg.
- Skating! Yes, you heard right – skating in Williamsburg, on fake (?) ice (?). Iceburg, at Mid-County park is open through March and it is … fun. It feels a bit weird skating on plastic, but you don’t need freezing temps in Williamsburg to do it, and skating is …well… romantic.
- Star Gaze! The Virginia Living Museum is having “Love on the Wild Side Star Party,” this year, for Valentine’s Day. The planetarium show is matched with swirling laser lights! Should be a fabulously romantic (and educational) experience.
- Walk hand-in-hand! Put on your Colonial garb (or not!) and walk through Colonial Williamsburg. Colonial Williamsburg, at night, is quite special. You’ll always see people walking about, so it isn’t baron. Fire crescents will light your way and you’ll be able to walk hand-in-hand, safely through the streets as no cars are allowed. And… Hint Hint: quality time is what she craves, most of all. Or walk during the morning hours of the big day, at the Williamsburg Farmers’ Market, right in Merchants Square. Listen to live music while you pick up goodies for your home-cooked and organic meal.
- Finally, if nothing on this list of romantic things to do in Williamsburg, on Valentine’s Day, clicks your trigger, I suggest you go back to where you first met, or kissed, or locked eyes – and read her your poem. Or you can simply tell her you’d do it all again – girls like that kind of stuff!
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Rolf Kramer, REALTOR®, ABR, SRES, e-PRO 757-564-4455 Licensed in Virginia with Liz Moore and Associates, 5350 Discovery Park Blvd, Williamsburg, VA 23188 Williamsburg has become a Mecca for retirees over the past dozen years because of its history, charm, vacation amenities, proximity to major cities and airports, and affordable cost of living. Check out www.retiringinwilliamsburg.com for information about the Williamsburg community, lifestyles available, and search for homes for sale.