Dinner, a movie, and a dozen roses are fine and dandy, but this list is for those who might be inclined to partake in the upcoming love-based holiday in a way that’s a bit left of center.
Below you’ll find a few less-common places to grab a bite, a gift, or have a nice night out this Valentine’s—either with your partner, your pals, or on a solo, self-care date.
Local foodies are all too familiar with the struggle of finding a place to dine on a Monday in SLC (which is exactly where V-day falls this year), but weekday brunch is a near-impossible find most anywhere. For a charming, mid-morning meal, we suggest you sneak away the day before to Manoli’s. Located in the Central 9th neighborhood, Manoli’s offers a Greek-forward menu with uniquely dazzling flavor combinations, and their brunch menu is particularly delicious (you certainly can’t go wrong with the Myzithra pancakes or the daily quiche).
This new(ish) addition is a welcome one to the 9th & 9th neighborhood. The charming patio steps are more than pleasant in warmer seasons, but this Valentine’s eve you’d do well to snag a table indoors to take in the elegant and understated interior. We suggest you start with the guacamole and chips or beans and plantains, and as far as main courses go, the shrimp tacos are out of this world.
Dessert: Normal® ice cream
Utah loves ice cream, and nobody in Utah does ice cream like Normal®. The flavor profiles here are as intriguing as they are tasty, and Normal® is also known for its ever-rotating menu and holiday-themed flavors and cones. This Valentine’s, stop by their storefront (Central 9th) or truck (inside Trolley Square) for an “r u red hot?” (salted vanilla bean soft serve with dulcey dip and Red Hots) or “dreamsicle come true” (rosemary and olive oil soft serve with olive oil cake, orange marmalade, and olive oil powder).
PICK UP A DOZEN
Not only does Orchid Dynasty peddle their namesake flora by the dozens, but there’s a handsome supply of ficuses and tropical houseplants here too. O.D. also sells an array of beautiful pots, should your new plant need a home, and the brightly colored (and toasty) greenhouse is not to be missed—grab a hot drink from their in-house coffee bar and head on in.
One of the larger greenery shops in SLC, the warm, winding walkways of Cactus & Tropicals hold an enormous selection of trees and plants, both for interior and exterior use. Come in out of the cold and spend a few wandering around in here, then pick up a bit of greenery to bring home.
With its charming garage door (open on warmer days) and cluttered pathways of plants, Paradise Palm is a splendid place to spend a chilly afternoon. Stop in here for an unusual array of houseplants, including a large assortment of bonsai trees.
Somewhat of a local landmark in this town, the aisles of Ken Sanders are teetering with rare tomes. Duck in here for some lit. love (it is a day of romance, after all), and leave with a bit of local history—Ken's wares won’t be housed in this historic space much longer.
One of the only art house theaters in the city, Downtown’s Broadway Theater is a great place to tuck away for a more thoughtful flick. For dimmed house lights, a moody movie, and an enticing array of concessions, make this your cozy date night spot.
There’s no better place for a hot tub dip with mountain views for days than Snowbird’s rooftop Cliff Spa. Grab a pass online ahead of time, and prepare to soak the day (or night) away.