Whether you are single and looking to meet great people, or you are already in a relationship, there are countless unconventional and fun places in New York City to have a great time. The key to giving your love life a jump-start lies with your interests. So, what kind of "socializer" are you?
The Shy Pensive Souls aka The Intellectuals
Perhaps you enjoy diving into a good book, admiring a piece of artwork, or just appreciating the beauty in this world, then we have some great hot spots for you. Its always great to pick the brain of people who see the world through artistic and intellectual eyes. Here are a few suggestions where you can meet cultured and knowledgeable individuals in a social setting:
The Drama Book Shop: If you are looking for a great play, monologues, dialect CDs or an action figure of Oscar Wild, then come down to the Drama Book Shop for all your theatrical needs.
Metropolitan Museum of Art / The Museum of Natural History: There are so many things for your eyes to rest on in these museums. If it's historical art or some of nature’s most magnificent creatures and mysteries, you are sure to find something to connect to.
Broadway Show: Acclaimed show tunes, jazz hands, and exceptional choreography… Broadway shows are always a fun experience. There is nothing like live theater and the fact that anything can happen on stage. Perhaps even off stage, here you can meet and socialize with people who love a wonderfully told story.
Strand Bookstore: You can turn pages for hours at this expansive bookstore. Meeting people, while getting a great book, and not burning a hole in your pocket, what could be better?
The Metropolitan Opera: We may not be able to understand what they are singing (you may…), but sometimes the great story speaks for itself. Come and explore the spectacles that will take place on stage and perhaps connect with someone else who is equally moved by the performance.
The Adventure Seekers
Hey all you adrenaline junkies! If you want to mingle with people who have a lust for life and love testing the boundaries, then grab your athletic gear and run on over to some of these great places for some action-packed socializing.
Indoor Rock Climbing: Put your climbing shoes on and bring your date to an indoor rock climbing club for some hardcore fun.
Uptown Skate School: Before shredding in the skate park, learn some new tricks (and safety tips) at the Uptown Skate School, where there are instructors equipped and ready to meet you and your date at a location of choice for a private lesson.
Helicopter Tour of NYC: It’s a bird, it’s a plane, no it’s you and your date flying over the NYC skyline in a helicopter. Take a tour and see the famous landmarks from a different angle.
The Trapeze School of New York: Being a spectator at the circus doesn’t cut it anymore--challenge your date by testing his or her limits at the Trapeze School of New York. The two of you can cheer each other on as you fly through the air with the greatest of ease.
Chelsea Piers: little friendly competition never hurt anyone--challenge your date to a friendly game at Chelsea Piers. Make things a little more interesting and place an ice cream wager on the outcome. Therefore, when the game is over you can eat your sweet snack as you walk along the pier.
The Animal Lovers
Regardless if you are a pet owner, a wildlife enthusiast, or if you just have a soft spot for animals, perk up your ears! Whether it's watching a show, being “hands on” with the animals, or sharing vegetarian cuisine, then are some great places for you and your date to develop a deeper connection.
The Central Park Zoo: Take a tour, or go to an exhibit, you will certainly have some conversation starters with all the different animals.
The New York Aquarium: Take a trip under the sea and learn all about the creatures of the deep blue sea. From penguin, shark, and walrus feedings to sea-lion shows, the New York aquarium has tons of activities for you to do with a date. You can translate for a penguin or learn about Giant Pacific Octopuses--whatever you do, you are sure to have fun.
The Bronx Zoo: This zoo, unlike the others, has the Butterfly Garden which can be very romantic... wink, wink. The Bronx Zoo also gives you the ability to trek the African savanna as well as visit some of Madagascar’s exciting animals. This is a perfect place for animal lovers.
Buddha Bodai: A vegetarian restaurant located in Chinatown is a great spot for you and your significant other to dine without guilt. With 70 main courses alone, this restaurant combines kosher and Chinese style dishes that you are sure to love.
Doga Dog: Combines massage and meditation with gentle stretches for dogs and their human partners. This is a great place for any dog lover to not only bond with a pet, but also meet others who share a common love for dogs.
The Funnies or Humorous Laugh Bags
Knock, Knock.. Who’s there? Juana. Juana who? Juana meet people who love to laugh? Here's how:
Gotham Comedy Club: Besides seeing a great comedy show with your partner, try going to some of the Gotham Comedy Club classes. If you know you have the skills to do stand-up, or you just want to network with other comedians and learn about the skills behind telling a joke, then this is for you. Check out their site and see who is coming. Who knows who you might share a laugh with?
UCB Theater: Do you love improv shows? The spontaneity, the excitement of not knowing what is going to happen next, is what Upright Citizen’s Brigade is all about. Whether you want to watch sketches and improv scenes, or you want to get involved and improv yourself, this is a great place to meet people. What's even better is that the performances and classes are affordable, because laughter should never be that hard to attain.
Rocky Horror Picture Show: This is not just your average performance; created after the cult classic film this shout-out-loud and get-out-of-your-seat experience is like nothing else you have ever been too. Get ready for big laughs and wacky shenanigans, this risque show will definitely leave you and your date with plenty to talk about.
Do you enjoy long romantic walks to your fridge? You live to eat. You don’t just look at food like chocolate and see a cacao bean processed into deliciousness, you see potential for amazing chocolate creations that will dance the rumba on your palette. Yes! You take your food seriously--its not just nutrition but a religious experience, and we totally understand you! Explore your inner foodie with people who do the same.
Eataly: If you're in the mood for Italian, meet your date at Eataly, and take a trip to Italy without leaving the building. The high-energy, rustic ambiance, variety of different cuisines, will make this experience one you will be sure to remember. With the restaurants, people, and market, make sure to take in your surroundings and loosen your belt.
Cooking Class: If you believe you have already mastered the art of ordering and eating in a restaurant, you should extend your appreciation for food by learning how to cook. Grab a date or a bunch of friends and sign up for a cooking class, where you can have fun and learn delicious recipes at the same time.
Max Brenner Chocolate Shop: Do you have a sweet tooth? If yes, then this is the place for you! Although, Max Brenner’s does have a delicious menu, they are more known for their love for chocolate. Nosh a little bit but make sure you save a lot of room because you are not going to be able to resist diving into one of their decadent desserts!
Centro Vasco: Do you believe that bigger is better? Or that size matters? Well, they are definitely believers when it comes to crustaceans at Centro Vasco! This Spanish-inspired seafood restaurant specializes in lobster,r but also has a full menu of other delicious options. Our favorites are the shrimp ajillo, chorizo, and broiled tails with Spanish fries. What’s yours?
Jing Fong: If you want to spice things up and steer clear of the conventional dinner date, then take your date to Jing Fong for a new, interactive dining experience. This restaurant specializes in Dim Sum, where the servers walk around with meal carts allowing you to pick small plates of food to share. This is a great opportunity to show your adventurous side by trying new cuisine and sampling different dishes.
Are you an outdoorsy type or just don’t want to spend the entire day inside? Then come out and get some fresh air with these environmentally friendly ideas. Renew your excitement for summer... recycle your love for nature... and reuse your desire to be active. Step outside and share your fondness of mother nature with tree huggers just like you.
Walk the High Line: Take a relaxing stroll and watch the city’s hustle and bustle down below. There is plenty to talk about as you pass the sights in Chelsea. However, if you want to head to the stairs later in the evening, be sure to check out stargazing every Tuesday. You and your date can gaze at the stars, planets, and the moon using high-powered telescopes and chat with members of the Amateur Astronauts Association of New York.
Madison Square Park: Go sit and people watch or grab a delicious burger and shake at Shake Shack. Talk about favorites places to travel and fun things to do in the city. Relax and take in the beautiful scenery with some great company.
HBO Bryant Park Film Festival: See a film in the park or grab a bite at the Bryant Park Grill and enjoy the all-American style cuisine on the outdoor patio or rooftop garden.
Don't forget to catch "1st Look" this Saturday after "Saturday Night Live" as host Ali Fedotowsky explores the best date spots!