Celebrating Valentine’s Day – 2017
Hey all you sweethearts out there, your holiday has arrived! Valentine’s Day is the designated day of the year in which we all shower the special someones in our lives—partners, kids, family, friends–with our affection, which in modern times can be just about anything as long as it comes from the heart. For most, it’s still celebrated with a special date and of course the customary exchange of gifts. If you’re looking for ideas in either department, as usual, we’ve got you covered with ideas from our local businesses. Here are the lucky seven in honor of those who are lucky in love!
Idea #1: Hit The Lanes With Your Lover
Ever been on a date at the bowling alley? We bet you have, because it’s a classic, and still holds rank on the list of fun ways to spend Valentine’s Day together.
“Nothing says ‘love’ like lacing up a pair of bowling shoes and rolling a couple of games with your significant other,” says Jennifer Davis-Korn of 48 Bowl. “It’s a true test of your compatibility. It answers those lingering questions you might have about your partner like, ‘Is she comfortable enough around me to wear those ugly shoes?’ and “Is he still going to have a good sense of humor when I beat him at sports?’ If you’ve been wondering these things, then after your romantic dinner bring your date bowling at 48 Bowl centers, Parkway Lanes or Hollywood Bowl. Our $4-3-2-1 weeknight pricing is in effect, where the more you bowl, the cheaper it gets. Go ahead and spend frivolously on that special dinner. Our prices won’t break the bank.
If you’re a single, then grab a couple of friends and come bowling anyway! You can get our $4-3-2-1 pricing, too! You might meet the person of your dreams on the lanes. We know several people who have. We’ve even hosted their wedding receptions. So, you never know! If you leave the lanes still single, at least you’ll have had fun. And if you want to drown your sorrows (responsibly, of course) we do have a full-service bar with extensive cocktails, bottled and draught beers on tap.
Winter is our busiest time of year, so we do recommend making a reservation to guarantee a lane. You can do that by calling the center you wish to book at and ask to speak with a shift manager. To call Parkway Lanes, dial (402) 483-7763. To call Hollywood Bowl, dial (402) 466-1911.”
Idea #2: Relax, Refresh, Romance
Treating yourself to spa services is really nice in general, and even nicer when you’re able to enjoy the experience with that special someone here and there. Either way, it’s an excellent way to spend Valentine’s Day, even paying homage as an act of self-love. They also can be offered as a token of affection because they fall into the category of gifts that are universally well-received.
A trip can be incorporated into a date or alternatively, in preparation for the big date, unwinding after the big date, make for excellent plans to pamper yourself if you don’t have a big date—there’s plenty of good reasons…and health benefits too!
“Treating yourself is the way to go, and indulging in a massage or special treatment certainly fits the bill,” says Erin Lange of 5 Elements Massage. “If you are someone who enjoys holiday themes, you could even take it a step further and get creative. Have a little fun with it! I’ll be offering chocolate wrap massages as a Valentine’s Day special, and they are just as amazing as the delicious stuff we eat. While it’s a more well-known fact that eating 1 oz. of dark chocolate a day helps improve blood pressure issues, what most people don’t know is that raw cocoa, when applied topically, can reduce the look of fine lines and uneven texture on the skin. It actively hydrates the lipids in your skin, tightens and tones, giving you a more youthful, slender look. It also has a very energizing effect on the body and spirit; it’s very cool how many positive health benefits are derived from the use of raw cocoa.
Based on my professional training with sugar scrubs and salt glows, I’ve put together my own blends that I utilize in conjunction with the different massage modalities I offer. For the chocolate wrap massage, I created an all-natural blend with the main ingredient of raw cocoa. While the aroma is amazing, as a word of caution, I do advise against tasting the blend. As tempting as it will be to lick yourself, you will be offered chocolate to eat at the end of the treatment!
For those who are curious about the procedure, here’s what you need to know:
As much skin as can be exposed is encouraged, based on your comfort level of course. Dry brushing directly onto the skin is the first step. Once the body is covered in the chocolate treatment it’s wrapped in thermal wraps, sheets, and blankets. As your body warms up it allows the treatment to absorb into the skin. During that time, a massage is given around your head and shoulders. Sometimes if the feet are exposed, they too can be included. Hot towels are then used to remove the chocolate from the skin and a lotion is applied once cleaned off.”
Couples massages are especially popular, shared side-by-side in honor of Valentine’s Day with your favorite sweetheart. “It’s really a thoughtful gesture to book a massage and surprise your significant other,” says Dennis Varley of The Body Shoppe. “We still have limited availability for the weekend before, day-of, and the weekend after, so you can work it into your plans last-minute no problem. For those who still need to decide on a gift, it’s as simple as going online and purchasing a gift certificate that can be printed off and presented to the recipient. They can then schedule their appointment at a time that works with their schedule and for their preferred massage technique, whether it’s Swedish, deep tissue, or left up to us to decide what would be the best approach. Anyone can benefit from a massage, and if it’s a gift, even better!”
In a world of possibilities, there’s a vast array of professional beauty/spa services or procedures that make great gifts on any budget. So if there’s been a hint dropped, something you’ve noticed along the way, or if you have the perfect idea in mind, chances are it’s going to be a wonderful surprise. You might also give the gift of choice with a gift certificate to a location that has an extensive service menu, with the added convenience of getting them performed under one roof. Let’s not forget those who may need to book a last-minute pre-date trip, because you never know when Cupid’s arrow is going to hit the tar
“We have many options for Valentine’s Day – Couples Massages, Pedicures, Manicures, Air Brush Tanning, and waxing just to name a few,” says Tiffany Olson of The Spa at Bryan LifePointe. “Our Medical Spa can do procedures such as Botox, lip filler, Kybella (reduction of double chin), and Laser Hair Reduction to spruce you up before the big heart day. Gift certificates are always a favorite. This gives the option for your significant other to choose the service they would like, and is a good choice if you’re uncertain of what service they would prefer. If you would like to purchase a gift item, Latisse (eyelash enhancer) or any of our medical-grade moisturizers or product lines would be a pleasant surprise for even the pickiest partner. You can also take advantage of the specials we are offering during the month of February:
- Waxing – Purchase a combo Brazilian and underarm wax for $60. ($70 value)
- Airbrush Tanning – Five full-body airbrush tans for just $99. ($125 value)
- Volbella® – Volbella® smooths fine lines around the lip area that develop with age. Purchase one syringe and receive a free SkinCeuticals antioxidant lip repair treatment. (Some restrictions apply.)
She also notes, “A nice relaxing day at the Spa will rejuvenate your body as well as your mind, which is essential to looking good and feeling great.
Looking good for some is a priority, but don’t feel like it has to be related to whether you are dating or married or a holiday associated with hearts. An afternoon at the spa with a friend can be just as enjoyable, or on the other hand, some much-needed alone time is always on many of our clients’ wish lists.
Bryan LifePointe is connected with Bryan Hospital, so we make it a priority to have everyone’s health come first and foremost and you will find our facilities to be immaculate.
To learn more and schedule your appointment, call (402) 481-6321.”
Right about now you might be feeling like your options are limited given the time until Valentine’s Day arrives, but don’t completely count out getting a coveted spot on the books yet this month. Tranquility Salon & Spa is another gem in Lincoln that still has availability on the books, but don’t put it off any longer if possible. Alternatively, you can always give the gift of a future spa date. “We specialize in pampering and full body relaxation, which is perfect as a gift or for anyone who is preparing for a big date,” agrees Tasha Schmeichel of Tranquility Salon & Spa. “For Valentine’s Day, as well as other holidays throughout the year, we offer themed gift cards and put together special packages. As previously mentioned, couples massages are popular for a Valentine’s Day date or to give as a gift for a future date. As an example of a package deal, you could opt to elevate the experience with a massage and pedicure. All of our services can be mixed and matched, so just pick the ones you prefer and it’s a customized gift that shows you put some thought into it. And really, who doesn’t love to be pampered? It’s fun to share that experience with your significant other, friends, kids, parents—you can celebrate Valentine’s Day with anyone you love! Our blowdry and makeup bar and Aveda spa services are also popular for those who are getting glammed up to go out on the town with that special someone, and our team of professionals will make sure you’re looking and feeling your very best.”
You could even schedule a salon and spa day in conjunction with a boudoir photography session with Boudoir Boutique by Purple Sky Productions and really give him something to remember with this year’s Valentine’s Day gift exchange!
Idea #3: Make It An International Affair
When thinking about romantic destinations abroad, France and Italy often come to mind. While traveling there might not be possible this year, there are creative ways to set the scene as though you did.
For a taste of France, in an intimate, charming setting, The Normandy fits the bill to perfection.
With the belief that fine dining is an experience everyone deserves to enjoy, The Normandy prides itself on bringing a genuine taste of premier French cuisine to Lincolnites. Those dining at The Normandy with their Valentine will enjoy authentic fare and share an exquisite dining experience together.
Alternatively, if Italy is more your style, MoMo Pizzeria & Ristorante serves up authentic Italian fare in a warm, classy-meets-casual ambiance. To top it all off, they have a great bar with a nice variety of signature cocktails to sip on while you gaze into one another’s eyes.
Each year the chefs at MoMo Pizzeria & Ristorante put together a special feature menu especially for Valentine’s Day, and it’s not one to miss!
No matter where you “travel” for your date, you’ll want to go in style—and gift in style.
A local boutique is a great place to find an outfit for your date, the right accessories to match what you’ve already put together, or a unique gift item.
“Valentine’s Day presents a great opportunity to give a gift, even if it’s a gift for yourself,” notes Cherie Travis of Rachel’s Boutique. “We have a lovely Brighton Sweetheart tote that’s a free gift with a $100 purchase of Brighton products. Fill the tote with Brighton jewelry, a bottle of wine, and a dozen roses, or any other assortment of items you please. Colorful scarves and spring items are arriving daily this month, and we have gift items starting at just $10 and up. Since Brighton is a line that often uses hearts on the jewelry, handbags, and leather accessories, it’s very fitting for this holiday in particular. You could also create a charm bracelet or necklace from our Brighton design studio here in the store. Or, if hearts aren’t really your thing, Rachel’s also features several other jewelry lines. Blo Vintage is a line of vintage whistles, which are pretty but also function as a personal safety device. Also new to Rachel’s is a line of crystal necklaces made from those used on chandeliers. Let us help you find the perfect gift for your Valentine!”
As far as gifts for men in the style department, Gary Novotny of Gary Michaels Clothiers advises, “The easiest and best gift that most men would enjoy is adding a colorful splash to their wardrobe with hosiery. The last few years hosiery, or simply ‘socks,’ have been making a major style impact; whether dressy or casual, it adds a nice touch to complete an outfit. We carry a selection of hosiery in all fashion colors and patterns. These are made in Italy and retail anywhere from $19.95 on up. Men’s fragrances are also very popular, as is solid red neckwear.”
He also offers some guidance for men as to what might make for a big hit this Valentine’s Day. “First, and as simple as it sounds, you may not say it enough, so just make sure you tell her that you love her explicitly. Then, show your appreciation for all that she does in a way that’s fitting. Personal touches are often more meaningful than grandiose gestures that are general in nature. Yes, cards, flowers, and gifts are always welcome, but make time to do something special together too, even if it’s just serving breakfast in bed and sharing coffee.”
Idea #4: Put A Ring On It (Or a Necklace, Bracelet, Earrings, Watch…)
Speaking of which, a timeless gift that’s romantic and exciting, fine jewelry definitely nails it every.single.time. In the case of Valentine’s Day, it’s something that will be treasured long after the date has ended. It serves as a lasting reminder that the recipient is loved and treasured–every time that person looks at that piece of jewelry, they’ll think of you. As such, not just any piece will do; it’s much more personal than that, which is what makes it the perfect gift in the first place. At Sartor Hamann Jewelers, you’ll be able to shop the best selection in town, making finding just the right piece, and just in the nick of time, a virtual certainty.
Idea #5: Give Me A Break!
Really, do it. We all wish we could take a vacation from adult responsibilities at some point, so why not give that as a gift? The how is as simple as a gift certificate for professional cleaning services.
“Giving the gift of free time is an excellent gift,” says Brenda Schwery of Maid To Please. “Ways to make that special person’s life easier and less stressful might include a gift card for cleaning, scheduling a surprise cleaning while they’re away from the home. Take them out while it’s being done, or maybe arrange for them arrive at a clean home and have dinner already prepared or a date planned from there. Or just simply perform all of the tasks around the house that need to be done such as laundry, cleaning, running kids around, etc. Make the day about the loved one by giving them the gift of time and let them relax.
At Maid To Please, we can even take it a step further for Valentine’s Day and put together gift baskets that include a gift card for cleaning services along with other fitting items like wine, chocolates, etc. We can create these in various budget ranges, and it’s quite convenient. Let us give your loved one the gift of time along with offering the same to you by letting us put together a basket of wonderful things.”
Idea #6: Wine + Whatever
It’s as simple as it sounds, just enjoy wine along with great conversation, or even while creating great art together.
You might already be familiar with the Paint & Sip Studio concept, and if you’ve never done it before, it’s a must-try experience. And if you have, you’ll never create the same piece of art twice and it makes for a great date, so why not give it a go.
At Pinot’s Palette’s Lincoln studio, you can expect an upscale experience, with exceptional quality materials and care during an entertaining yet relaxing, fun and social night out with other couples and groups of singles alike who are celebrating Valentine’s Day.
When enjoyed with a date, you can also create works of art that are meant to be displayed together (very cute!). Even if you opt out of that, it’s nice for the sentimental value of leaving with a piece of art to remind you of the time you shared together.
Alternatively, you could make your local wine bar the date destination, or a part of the itinerary. Located at 28th & Pine Lake Road, barVino is the place to check out if your Valentine loves wine, or who at the very least indulges in a glass on occasion as a special treat. There’s wine by the bottle, wine by the tap, wine by the glass, and for those who are treating their wine lover but don’t necessarily care for wine themselves, there’s also a nice selection of top shelf liquor and bottled beer. Pair that with an appetizer or dessert, depending on your preference, and you’re all set to enjoy a cozy, romantic date together.
Or, if you’re planning to stay in for your date night, you can’t beat sharing a nice bottle of wine over dinner, during a movie, while playing games—really whatever you like. James Arthur Vineyards has a great selection of award-winning wines that can be picked up on-site, or for a more convenient option in Lincoln, at From Nebraska Gift Shop in the Historic Haymarket. Alternatively, if a mini getaway for an afternoon or evening is on your agenda, whisk your Valentine out to James Arthur Vineyards for a little wine tasting fun!
As for gifts, wine is a good one, or take your pick from a fantastic selection if items that are all made with love right here in our home state at From Nebraska Gift Shop. “For a special Valentine’s Day treat, we can also recommend the perfect pairings of wine and cheese or wine and chocolate found in the store,” adds Barb Ballard of James Arthur Vineyards and From Nebraska Gift Shop. “There’s plenty of different gift baskets to choose from that have been specially curated by our staff and can be picked up last-minute, or we’ll be happy to put together a customized basket for you. Husker Red and Valentine’s Day are the perfect match!”
Idea #7: Treat Them to New Toys
Just like kids on Christmas or any other gift-giving holiday, adults love new toys too. Whether it’s the latest and greatest technological gadget or something more specific to their particular set of interests, there’s so much out there to choose from that it should be no problem to find just the thing that will induce a serious heart swell.
Does your significant other love to golf? Take off on a morning or evening run frequently? Play a certain sport? Or are they an avid fitness enthusiast in general? Have they perhaps just committed to a new boot camp or gym routine as a result of a New Year’s resolution? Or would it be nice for them to have an option to do their work out at home? If you answered yes to any of the above, a sweet gesture on Valentine’s Day would be to get them the gear they need to smash their goals or find more enjoyment in their favorite hobby. You’ll find a fantastic selection of new and gently used sporting goods and exercise equipment at Play It Again Sports, and you definitely can’t beat the price tags either.
Or, do they really take pride their ride? Spend a lot of time in the car during the day? Need to have something done to their vehicle that they’ve been putting off? There are a lot of options as far as vehicle modifications, integration of state-of-the-art systems, and services that you could extend to your love.
These are just a few of the many instances where gift-giving can be fun and purposeful all at the same time. In other words, they’ll be excited to receive it and it will get used—it’s a win-win!
Since Valentine’s Day falls on a Tuesday this year, it means more love will be spread around from the weekend prior to the weekend after. This bodes well for all of the last-minute planners and shoppers out there, and hopefully we’ve helped you out with some ideas to get you well on your way to enjoying the best one yet!