Whether you love or hate Valentine’s Day, are single or loved up, there’s something for everyone in London over the Valentine’s Day period. From slushfest romantic dates to fun and cheese-free events.
Valentine’s Day is fast approaching so Londoners everywhere are being bombarded with images of hearts and roses. Of course, it’s a commercial day which encourages you to spend money on your beloved. If you’re in a couple and looking for something a bit different from the standard overpriced set menu in a restaurant, check out this guide to what’s on in London. Many of the events, such as balls and comedy nights, are open to singles and couples, so you can still have fun and embrace the day regardless of your single status.
- 9 February : Lost Hearts – A Valentine’s Ball
A masked ball spanning four floors at the Century Club, featuring eerie, exotic and eccentric performers, drinking and dancing. 9pm-3am. Tickets from £20. The Century Club, 61-63 Shaftesbury Avenue, Soho, W1D 6LQ. Nearest station: Piccadilly Circus or Leicester Square. For more information, visit A Curious Invitation website.
- 9 February : The Candlelight Club’s Valentine’s Ball
Pop-up vintage nightclub The Candlelight Club host a Valentine’s ball. Hosted by Champagne Charlie, there will live music from the Bubbly Boys, tunes from vintage DJs Bee’s Knees and dancing from the Gatsby Girls. Meanwhile, in the Cabaret Lounge, Hot Swing Bohème will be playing gypsy jazz, while Marcel Lucont will host two cabaret shows featuring acrobatics duo Deux Ailes, burlesque bombshell Bonnie Fox and comic singing by La Poule Plombée. Despite Valentine’s styling, the event welcomes groups and singles, rather than just couples. 7pm-12am. Tickets from £30pp. Tables start from £65pp. At a secret east London location. For tickets, visit the Candlelight Club website. For Metro Girl’s review of TCC, click here.
- 10 and 14 February : Valentine’s @ Keat’s House
A series of Valentine’s events at the stunning house where poet John Keats fell in love with Fanny Brawne, who inspired his most romantic verses. Afternoon Poems: Love Poetry on Sunday 10 February (2pm-3pm) and Valentine’s Late Night Keats on Thursday 14 February (6.30pm-9pm). Afternoon Poems is free, while Late Night Keats is £15 (includes drink). Keats’ House, 10 Keats Grove, Hampstead, NW3 2RR. Nearest station: Hampstead Heath or Hampstead. For more information, visit the City of London website.
- 11 – 17 February : Chocolate Cocktails @ Old Bengal Bar
The Old Bengal Bar are creating a special chocolate cocktail menu for Valentine’s Day. Drinks include Dark Chocolate and Chilli Martini, White Chocolate Delight and a Baileys and Mint Chocolate Martini. Drinks: £9.75 (include complimentary mint chocolate shot). Old Bengal Bar, 16 New Street, City of London, EC2M 4TR. Nearest station: Liverpool Street. For more information, visit the Old Bengal Bar website.
- 12 – 15 February : Barry White: Love God of Soul: Starring Shenton Dixon @ Boisdale
The Canary Wharf branch of Boisdale is hosting four days of music and food, inspired by the late Barry White. Tribute act Shenton Dixon will perform the Walrus of Soul’s classic hits while you enjoy a meal. Gig starts at 9.15pm. Tickets: £15-£99 (depending on date, package or drinks only). Boisdale, Cabot Place, Canary Wharf, E14 4QT. Nearest station: Canary Wharf. For more information, visit the Boisdale website.
- 13 – 14 February : Valentine’s @ Dirty Bones
Dirty Bones in Kensington are celebrating Valentine’s with special events and menus. On 13 February, enjoy a screening of When Harry Met Sally with popcorn, 2 cocktails and 25% food discounts if you eat before, after or during the movie. On actual Valentine’s Day, you can take part in the ‘Uh Huh Honey Cocktail Masterclass’ and learn how to make Dirty Bones’ Valentine’s cocktail, the Rose-Tinted Club (available 11-17 Feb). Film screening on Wed 13 Feb @ 7.30pm, tickets £10pp. Masterclass on Thu 14 Feb @ 6.30pm, tickets £45pp. Dirty Bones, Kensington Church Street, Kensington, W8. Nearest station: High Street Kensington. For more information, visit Dirty Bones website. To book masterclass, email Kensington@dirty-bones.com or for movie tickets, check out DesignMyNight.
- 13 – 15 February : Pop-Up Cinema @ Rivoli Ballroom
Watch classic movies Pretty Woman, Romeo + Juliet or Ghost in the striking 1950s surrounds of the Rivoli Ballroom. 8pm. Tickets: £12. Rivoli Ballroom, 350 Brockley Road, Crofton Park, SE4 2BY. Nearest station: Crofton Park. For more information, visit the Rivoli Ballroom website. Read the rest of this entry
It’s the florist’s favourite holiday… yes we’re talking about Valentine’s Day. Now, admittedly it can seem like contrived romance, but if you don’t spend enough time treating your loved one, it can be a good kick up the backside to crank up the lurve! However, if gazing in each others’ eyes over a candlelit meal seems too cliché, there’s a host of different Valentine’s themed events to cater for all kinds of interests. With Valentine’s Day falling bang in the middle of the week, plenty of places are holding early or late celebrations over both weekends. If you’re single, or hate any kind of romance, then there’s also some fun activities and parties going on too.
- 9 – 10 and 16 – 17 February : Film & Fizz at One Aldwych
Enjoy a three-course dinner at Indigo, a glass of Champagne Lallier and watch All The Money In The World or Darkest Hour in the hotel’s private screening room. Tickets: Dinner, drinks & film: £55pp. One Aldwych Hotel, 1 Aldwych, WC2B 4BZ. Nearest station: Charing Cross or Temple. For more information, visit the One Aldwych website.
- 10 February : The Candlelight Club’s Valentine’s Ball
Pop-up vintage roaming nightclub The Candlelight Club host a Valentine’s ball. Featuring live jazz from the London Dance Orchestra and DJ Auntie Maureen, performances from Gatsby Girls, while in the Cabaret Lounge there will be live music from Café Manouche, two cabaret shows hosted by Champagne Charlie, featuring song and dance from Ginger Blush, tap dancing from Josephine Shaker and acrobatics from Deux Ailes. 7pm-12am. Tickets from £30pp. Tables also available. At a secret London location. For tickets, visit the Candelight Club website. For Metro Girl’s review of TCC, click here.
- 11 – 16 February : Valentine’s @ Keats’ House
A series of Valentine’s events at the stunning house where poet John Keats fell in love with Fanny Brawne, who inspired his most romantic verses. Valentine’s Guided Tour: ‘Love is my religion’ on Sun 11 Feb at 11.30am, 1pm and 3.30pm; The Poetry of Desire with Liz Berry and Richard Scott on Wed 14 Feb at 7pm and Late Night Keats: Ah! Dearest Love on Fri 16 Feb at 7pm. Ticket prices vary. Keats’ House, 10 Keats Grove, Hampstead, NW3 2RR. Nearest station: Hampstead Heath or Hampstead. For more information, visit the City of London website.
- 12 February : A Night Of Whitney
A musical tribute to the Queen of love ballads with her greatest hits performed by a full live band. 7pm-11pm. Tickets: Early Bird £12, Standard £16. Jazz Café, 5 Parkway, Camden Town, NW1 7PG. Nearest station: Camden Town. For more information, visit the Jazz Café website.
- 14 February : A Romantic Renaissance @ British Museum
Daytime talk exploring symbols of love and marriage in the Waddesdon Bequest at the British Museum. 1.15pm-2pm. Free entry. Room 2a, British Museum, Great Russell Street, Bloomsbury, WC1B 3DG. Nearest station: Russell Square or Tottenham Court Road. For more information, visit the British Museum website.
- 14 February : Valentines with Patti Boulaye – Billie and Me
Enjoy a three-course feast while listening to a live performance of Patti Boulaye OBE, singing Billie Holiday. Shows @ 7.15pm and 9.30pm. Tickets: £30 (music, no dinner) or dinner packages start from £69.50. Boisdale, Cabot Place, Canary Wharf, E14 4QT. Nearest station: Canary Wharf. For more information, visit the Boisdale website. Read the rest of this entry
This guide is for 2014, for a new guide to what’s on in London this Valentine’s Day 2016, click here.
Valentine’s Day – the one day of the year when couples feel pressure to make a big song and dance about their loved one. While many couples may keep things simple with their favourite takeaway or a table at their local restaurant, some men and women will be looking to pull out all the stops to make the night special. Here’s some ideas and listings of things on in London during Valentine’s. Most events are on 14 February unless otherwise specified.
- Love Nest Valentine’s Ball @ Old Vic Tunnels (14, 15 and 16 February)
The Artful Badger is hosting the Love Nest Valentine’s Ball over three consecutive days at the Old Vic Tunnels underneath Waterloo station. Featuring live bands, DJs, performers, interactive theatre and kissograms. Couples and singles welcome. Fancy dress encouraged. 14 Feb 8pm-2am, 15-16 Feb 8pm-4am. Tickets: £25. Old Vic Tunnels, Leake Street, Waterloo, SE1 8SW. Nearest tube/overland Waterloo. For more information and tickets, visit the Old Vic website.
- Night Safari Valentine’s Special @ Natural History Museum
Choose one of the two tours – the beautiful or the ugly – to see the stunning side of nature, or the world’s most gruesome creatures. 7-10pm. Tickets: Non-members £28, Members £25. Natural History Museum, Cromwell Road, South Kensington, SW7 5BD. Nearest tube: South Kensington. For more information and booking, visit the NHM website.
- Valentine’s Day Late @ Churchill War Rooms
Celebrate Valentine’s Day vintage-style under the streets of Whitehall. Featuring dance workshops with the London Swing Dance Society, 1940s-style letter writing, champagne and other drinks at the pop-up bar. Tickets £17.50. Churchill War Rooms, Clive Steps, King Charles Street, Whitehall, SW1A 2AQ. Nearest tube: Westminster. For more information and tickets, visit the IWM website.
- The Georgian Valentine’s Ball @ British Library
A Georgian-inspired banquet in the grand entrance hall of the British Library, featuring historical feasts, interactive performance, baroque musicians and Quadrilles. Tickets: £35. 7.30-10.30pm. British Library, 96 Euston Road, NW1 2DB. Nearest tube: Euston or King’s Cross St Pancras. For more information and tickets, visit the British Library website.
- Friday Lates: London Stories @ London Transport Museum
This month’s Friday Lates coincides with the opening of The Serco Prize for Illustration 2014 – London Stories. Featuring DJ, bar, storytelling on board the heritage vehicles, illustration workshops, fun photobooth and a chance to see the exhibition. Tickets: £10. 6.45pm onwards. London Transport Museum, Covent Garden Piazza, WC2E 7BB. Nearest tube: Covent Garden. For more information and tickets, visit the LTM website.
- Nomad Cinema comes to Hyde Park
Pop-up cinema company The Nomad Cinema screens two films on Valentine’s Day – an earlier showing of The Princess Bride @ 6.45pm or Breakfast At Tiffany’s @ 9.30pm. The secluded spot has underfloor heating, dance space under a glitterball, firepits for toasting marshmallows and a silhouette portrait workshop. Tickets £20 (includes glass of Prosecco and bar of Devine chocolate). The Lookout, Hyde Park, London W2 2UH. Nearest tube: Hyde Park Corner or Marble Arch. For more information and tickets, visit the Nomad Cinema website.