No Matter Your Budget, These 3 Dates Will Leave You With a Happy Heart
Regardless if you’re single, in a relationship or “it’s complicated,” it’s been far less magical having dinner and a cocktail in a parking lot this past year. Fortunately, the tides have turned and the world is officially open! Now is the time to jump off your couch to reinvigorate that adventurous part of your dating brain. We’ve put together three dates—ranging from low-cost to splurge status—giving you three reasons to turn your next weekend into one worth talking about. Best Date Newport Beach
1 | Ballin’ on a Budget
Length: 4 hours
Locations: Costa Mesa, Newport Beach, Corona del Mar
Price: $0-30 per person
Look: Casual, summer afternoon
Stop 1: Noguchi Garden
Towering buildings initially catch your eye as you enter the Insta-famous Noguchi Garden. Stepping past rock formations, you wander through the “six elements of California” that the artist so purposely placed nearly 40 years ago. After striking a pose on a boulder and sneaking a selfie over the stream, you pause for a moment, take a deep breath and appreciate the serenity of it all.
Best Date Newport Beach
Stop 2: Back Bay Loop Trail
After a few minutes’ drive, the busy business parks pleasantly evaporate. In fact, your first steps on the Newport Bay Ecological Reserve’s Back Bay Loop couldn’t be further from a sculpture garden. The day’s sun illuminates natural beauty that’s easily driven by any day of the week. You may not opt in for all 10.5 miles of the loop today, but any distance you choose connects you that much closer to the seascape we call home.
Stop 3: Roger’s Gardens
With that said, not too many places on the Newport Coast scream home like Roger’s Gardens. Entering the seemingly endless landscape, your childlike instinct to explore takes over. Twisted trees, colorful flowers and crazy creations adorn every inch of the almost 50-year-old institution. It’s a challenge not to leave without a new addition to your place, but after much deliberation, you realize the true gift was the day’s multitude of glorious garden moments.
Dock and Dine
Length: 3 hours
Location: Newport Beach
Price: $100-150 per person
Look: Beachy-chic ensemble
The bay is a buzz with daytime cocktailers as you make your way to Lido Marina Village Electric Boat Rentals. As you walk down to your fantail chariot, your first big decision is picking out the perfect boat to match your outfit. Pink or blue, you can’t go wrong, as you’ll be chugging along in no time. After a quick overview and Bluetooth set-up, you start the 5-mph chug around the harbor.
Stop 2: Cruise the Bay
Coasting past classic cottages and decadent sailboats, you snuggle closer to your loved one as you feel the cool ocean breeze. The passing and pointing at your preferred yacht complete with a matching mansion opens up the possibility of your fantasies. While waving to groups cheersing on their own electric rides, you realize it’s time for a cocktail of your own.
Stop 3: Tavern House Kitchen + Bar
Turning past Linda Island, you begin the team effort of navigating your docking approach to Tavern House Kitchen + Bar. Once tied up, the next challenge is deciding what you’ll order from the vibrant menu. Keeping it light-ish, you opt for the spicy poke, a Santa Fe Caesar and a pear flatbread. The moment wouldn’t be complete without a fresh watermelon mojito and a loving Dusty Rose cocktail, complete with a red rose garnish. The perfect couple to clank together, signaling the end to another day on the water.
3 | Eager to Impress
Length: 4 hours
Locations: Newport Beach, Costa Mesa
Price: $150-400 per person
Look: Your Sunday best
Stop 1: Luxury Exotic Car Rentals
Visions of grandeur wouldn’t be unwelcomed as you pass the hyper cars outside Luxury Exotic Car Rentals. With the universe at your fingertips, your difficult decision is picking a perfect ride for the day. Do you go convertible? Do you go Lambo? Does it even matter at 100 mph? After dialing in your muscled machine, you pull up to PCH with only one thing to do: put the pedal to the metal.
Stop 2: A’maree’s
After a joy ride down the coast, a break from the wheel is welcomed at the beautiful A’maree’s. Massive windows shine light on the curated fashion and home decor hand-picked from the sisters who’ve been styling here for over a decade. In between picking out your next favorite top, you gaze out at the boats passing closely by in the harbor. After stocking up on a few new additions, it’s time for the penthouse.
Stop 3: Knife Pleat
Make your way to South Coast Plaza to unwind with a delicious meal. Passing world-renowned designers, it’s no surprise to see the incredible style of Knife Pleat. You start at the bar with a Yohji Yamamoto or Yves Saint Laurent cocktail, which are created with the designers in mind. You then leisurely make your way to the patio for a lunch fit for a French afternoon. After your wines are poured, the lobster Caesar and spring risotto arrive like art pieces. They’re the perfect light addition to slow down the fast day.