Valentine’s Day in Beverly Hills

While Los Angeles may be better known for its traffic jams than for romance, the truth is, it can be one of the most romantic places on the planet. Whether you want to splurge or are looking for more budget-friendly options, Los Angeles offers everything from serene beach getaways to mountain retreats; from urban gardens to private sunset flights over the city; from champagne spa baths for two to sexy nightlife.  If you can’t find something romantic to do in Los Angeles, you may not have it in you.

Take an air tour over Los Angeles in a Zeppelin in Airship Ventures’ Eureka and enjoy the amazing views from the large picture windows. The sunset flight defines romantic. And if the budget forbids a Zeppelin flight, a private Sunset Champagne Helicopter Flight is another option. Fly to a romantic dinner.

Disneyland? Why not. Embrace your inner Mickey or Minnie Mouse and romance will bloom at the “happiest place on earth.” The Los Angeles area also boasts an abundance of beautiful public gardens perfect for romantic strolls, from botanical mazes to meditative Japanese gardens. And what’s not to love about 80 miles of Los Angeles coastline for long, soul-sharing walks on the beach. If you’re really adventurous, book a charter complete with skipper, or if you’re a skilled sailor, rent a boat and pack a picnic for a day out on the water, or sail to Catalina for lunch.

For a full dose of romance, try one of Beverly Hills’ classic establishments. Nestled on a lush Malibu hillside, Geoffrey’s Malibu (27400 Pacific Coast Highway), has fantastic views of the Pacific coastline. Voted one of LA’s best proposal spots, you may want to pop the question here. Good for celebrity sighting too. Or be Fred Astaire to her Ginger Rogers when you dine and dance at the Art Deco Sky Room on top of the historic Breakers building in Long Beach (40 S Locust Avenue). From this height, you get a magical view of the LA basin with a snow-capped mountain backdrop.

And check out the California stars at Café at the End of the Universe (2800 East Observatory Road). This Wolfgang Puck café at the Griffith Observatory may have an industrial feel with exposed ceiling pipes and plastic tables and chairs, but the panoramic view from the Hollywood Sign to Downtown LA makes the soul glad. A nice prelude to holding hands later and star-gazing through the Observatory’s Zeiss telescope.

Where would one stay during this romantic getaway? Our hotel experts recommend newly renovated Hotel Bel-Air (breakfast is on us until Dec. 31st, 2012) or the ultra-chic Mr. C Beverly Hills (enjoy a complimentary upgrade).

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