Whether you’re single or spending the day with your sweetheart, Valentine’s Day is a time to treat yourself to something special. Here are eight ways to celebrate the most romantic day of the year in Chicago.
1. Share fondue at Geja’s Cafe
Geja’s Cafe has been a mainstay in Lincoln Park for more than 50 years. The fondue spot is well-known by locals for being one of the most romantic restaurants in the city. Their indulgent menu includes their famous cheese fondue, along with fresh seafood, meat and vegetables. For dessert, dip treats into pots of rich chocolate fondue.
Tip: You can order fresh flowers to be waiting at your table.
2. Sightsee on a Valentine’s Day Cruise
Take your Valentine’s day dinner to the next level with a lakefront cruise. Step aboard one of Chicago’s many cruise lines, where you’ll dine and dance the night away with the city skyline in the background. Whether you’re looking for a seated meal, buffet or even brunch, there’s a cruise for you.
Odyssey Valentine’s Cruises (three-course seated dinner, dance floor, or brunch buffet)
Spirit Cruises Valentine’s Dinner Cruises (dinner buffet, dancing with live DJ)
3. Take a dip at AIRE Ancient Baths
This is far from your typical spa experience. Housed in a restored 1900s factory, AIRE offers ancient baths inspired by Roman, Greek and Ottoman tradition. Start with a candlelit thermal bath and add on experiences, such as an aromatherapy steam room, salt exfoliation, and luxurious massages. You can even submerge yourself in a bath filled with red wine.
4. Stop and smell the flowers at Chicago Botanic Garden Orchid Show
The annual Orchid Show at Chicago Botanic Garden is the perfect backdrop for a Valentine’s date. The show features more than 10,000 blooms from all over the world, instantly transporting you and your date to the tropics. You can even buy a potted orchid to bring home.
Tip: On Valentine’s Day, check out Orchids After Hours from 4 – 8 p.m.
5. Indulge at Vosges Haut-Chocolat
It’s not Valentine’s Day without chocolate. Skip the heart-shaped box from the drugstore and splurge on the artisan kind. At local chocolate boutique Vosges Haut-Chocolat, the handcrafted truffles and bars make a perfect gift for your sweetheart (or yourself).
Tip: Try one of the exotic flavors, like the manchego and cherry or coconut ash and banana chocolate bars.
6. See a burlesque show at Untitled Supper Club
Thursdays at Untitled mean one things — burlesque. Their Unbridled show takes the stage weekly with a variety of risque acts, including burlesque, circus, contortion, freak and fantasy performers. And they have a special Valentine’s Day show in the works.
7. Ice skate in Millennium Park
Glide along in the shadow of The Bean at the McCormick Tribune Ice Rink. Or head over to neighboring Maggie Daley park to explore the winding Skating Ribbon. Admission is free, skate rentals are available for a fee.
Tip: When you’re done skating, head across the street to Cindy’s at Chicago Athletic Association, where you can warm up with a drink while you watch skaters from above.
8. Take a spin on the Centennial Wheel
See the city skyline from a whole new perspective aboard the Centennial Wheel. The year-round attraction features 360-degree views of Chicago and Lake Michigan from comfortable, enclosed gondolas.
Tip: Buy your tickets online to save a few bucks.