Romantic Atlanta

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Romantic Atlanta
Atlanta has plenty of romantic restaurants, cozy wine bars, and luxurious spas, but it also offers couples a range of unusual opportunities to spend quality time together, from urban kayaking to Whirlyball to mixology classes.
By Caroline Eubanks, AFAR Local Expert
Photo by Caroline Eubanks
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    Romantic Dining
    For a romantic dinner with your special someone, reserve the private dining room at Bacchanalia, the most acclaimed restaurant in town, or eat a meal at Ray’s on the River, a riverside restaurant with fresh seafood and local ingredients. At Canoe, share a private moment in the gardens before taking in the views of the Chattahoochee River over your dinner of rainbow trout. Little Alley Steak in historic Roswell is a homey restaurant with a warm interior and excellent service. Ecco combines Italian and Mediterranean flavors, best shared between two.
    Photo by Caroline Eubanks
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    Wine Bars and Wineries
    Oenophiles can rejoice in the many wineries and wine bars within Atlanta. Inman Park's Barcelona Wine Bar has the best selection of Spanish varietals, as well as delicious tapas. Three Sheets in Sandy Springs offers classes pairing wines with grilled cheese sandwiches. Chateau Elan Winery and Resort in Braselton boasts 3,500 acres of property, including fields of chardon­nay, mer­lot, caber­net, and ries­ling grapes—and they offer tastings and tours for only $20. There are even more vineyards to choose from two hours into the North Georgia Mountains. Crane Creek Vineyards is a family-run business in Young Harris that has its own guesthouse and holds tapas nights.
    Photo by Caroline Eubanks
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    Offbeat Date Nights
    Looking for more unique date ideas than dinner and a movie for your visit to Atlanta? How about dinner and a hookah pipe at Divan, a Mediterranean restaurant and lounge? Fernbank Museum of Natural History's Martinis and IMAX event brings together live music, cocktails, and a featured documentary on the big screen. To indulge your creativity, bring your own beverage to Sips n Strokes in Sandy Springs, where you can learn to paint your very own masterpiece to take home with you. Show off your moves with a salsa dancing class at Salsa ATL. For seasonal dates that are sure to be different, stop by Netherworld Haunted House or go ice-skating in Centennial Olympic Park.
    Photo by Jeff Greenberg/age fotostock
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    Dinner and Entertainment
    Enjoy dinner and a movie at Buckhead's Fork and Screen, which serves up superb food and drink. The Atlanta Shakespeare Tavern is housed in a building that looks like the Globe Theatre and performs the Bard's work as well as other timeless classics. Agatha’s, A Taste of Mystery, brings the play into the audience with mystery-dinner theater. The Starlight Six Drive-In Theatre is the last drive-in remaining in town, but the theater hosts double features for a flat rate of $7. Comedy clubs are another fun date night out; the Laughing Skull Lounge brings in well-known standup acts.
    Photo by Aurelie and Morgan Da/age fotostock
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    Cooking and Mixology Classes
    Get those creative culinary juices flowing at a cooking or mixology class that will teach you new recipes and let you enjoy the final product. The Cook’s Warehouse, with locations in Decatur, Midtown, and East Cobb, sells high-end kitchen equipment (and wine) and also runs renowned cooking classes taught by well-known local chefs. For those who want to learn more about cocktails, No Mas Cantina in Castleberry Hill offers tequila-tasting classes that help you learn the difference between anejo and reposado. Samples are also paired with dishes from the restaurant's menu.
    Photo by age fotostock
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    Active Dates
    If you and your loved one want to get the blood flowing, go for a walk on the Beltline, a former railroad track that is now a walking path that runs part of the perimeter of the city. There are shops and restaurants along the way where you can stop for a break. Alternatively, rent a bike from Bicycle Tours of Atlanta to explore the area; they also run tours through downtown and the artsy areas of Edgewood. Since the Chattahoochee River runs through Atlanta, you can rent a kayak from High Country Outfitters and paddle your way downstream; they also rent tubes and stand-up paddleboards. Atlanta Rocks, an indoor rock climbing gym, is the best place for climbing in town.
    Photo by Caroline Eubanks
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    Scenic Viewpoints
    Whether you have an important question to ask or simply want to get away from the noise of the city, there are plenty of scenic viewpoints with great views of town. The Sun Dial is a romantic bar and restaurant located at the top of the Westin Peachtree Plaza. It's one of the tallest buildings downtown, so you can see for miles, and every seat has a view since the restaurant is constantly revolving. Polaris Restaurant at the Hyatt Regency has a similar vibe. Whiskey Blue at the W Hotel Buckhead has hip cocktails and private booths to go with its panorama. You can also climb Stone Mountain or Kennesaw Mountain for a less formal but equally stunning view of the surrounding suburbs.
    Photo by Caroline Eubanks
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    Loving Competition
    Kindle that spark with some friendly competition. Bowlmor, with its full bar and delicious menu, feels more like a high-class sports bar than a bowling alley. The Painted Pin in Buckhead has a similar vibe. Race to the finish line at Andretti’s, the fastest go-kart racing in the state. Whirlyball in Roswell may not move as fast, but it's just as competitive: You drive your kart while trying to throw a ball into the goal with a special scoop. Joystick, a gamer bar on Edgewood, brings back those childhood games you had all but forgotten. Sip your cocktail or craft beer while indulging in a game of Mortal Kombat or Pac Man. Topgolf, which has locations in Alpharetta and the Westside, offers point-scoring golf, driving, and target games.
    Photo courtesy of Bowlmor
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    Pamper Yourselves
    Relax with a couple's massage from any one of Atlanta's award-winning spas. Spa Sydell has locations all over the city and focuses on skincare and massage therapy. The Spa at the Mandarin Oriental hotel is the most luxurious, offering spa suites and a full-day couple's retreat, which includes foot massages, scalp massages, and full body massages. Their adjoining fitness center has a pool and views of their English Gardens. Flöt Spa is a unique experience, placing guests into pods filled with a Epsom salt solution meant to treat your body's everyday aches and pains. They also offer more traditional massages, skin care, and acupuncture.
    Photo courtesy of Mandarin Oriental Atlanta