February 2, 2016

February 14th is a contentious day. It splits people into two camps: those who embrace it with open arms and those who vehemently berate it as a load of BS. While the lovers may consider a pretty card with flowers on it as a profound expression of commitment (good for them), the haters roll their eyes and throw themselves enthusiastically into a pint of ice cream.

Whichever category you fall into, you only have to deal with it once a year. So suck it up and take a read through the best events to attend and have some fun this rose-tinted weekend without eating your body weight in saturated fat.

For the Loners

The Museum of Broken Relationships

The Museum of Broken Relationships houses the relics and mementos of relationships past; people who have been left brokenhearted submit an object to the museum that reminds them of their ex. From the humorous to the downright sad, the collection is made up of the obvious and the obscure. From wedding dresses and handcuffs to garden gnomes and small glass horses.

One of the most visited attractions in Zagreb, the collection is an ode to what it means to be in love. The handwritten notes are both hilarious and painful by turn. One poor soul bought an axe and went to town after being left for another woman:

“In the 14 days of her holiday, every day I axed one piece of her furniture. I kept the remains there, as an expression of my inner condition. The more her room filled with chopped furniture acquiring the look of my soul, the better I felt.”

Details: Zagreb, Croatia.

Down with Dating

Speed hating for those who’ve had it with dating. Flip the bird to V-Day with an anti-dating date night. (Take that, Valentine’s!) Get some beer down you and prepare to have a good grumble about everything that pisses you off – from people who show a flagrant disregard for queuing and chatty passengers on long-haul flights to anyone who doesn’t have their oyster card prepared for the barrier.

Details: Weds 10th Feb, The Phoenix, Cavendish Sq | Tickets here

Coney Island Party, Freaky Valentine’s Ball

Nothing screams romance like a hot dog eating contest. Amiright? Welcome to the Coney Island Valentine’s Party at Bethnal Green Working Men’s Club, for those who want nothing more than to get drunk and eat hot dogs on a Saturday night. Dress up in a 50s ball gown, or if that sounds a bit too much like hard work, ditch the dress and go fancy dress – sailor/mermaid theme obvs – and party like it’s 1999 (or the 50s. Whatever) There’ll be an opportunity to get some rad looking tats, watch a freak show and then take a spin on the fairground. We know where we’ll be this Valentine’s.

Details: Saturday 13th Feb, 9pm, Bethnal Green Working Mens Club | Tickets: £6

For the Lovers

Love Like a Lobster

Move over oysters, there’s a new aphrodisiac in town. Treat your loved one to a lobster or burger this weekend at Burger & Lobster. Get your mitts on a lobster emblazoned gift coin for £20 and treat your sweetheart to some burger lobster deliciousness.

Details: Available from any Burger & Lobster in the UK

Dans Le Noir

Take your beau to Dans Le Noir and dine in the dark. It might feel a bit gimmicky at first as you hand over your mobile phone and are led inside by the restaurant’s blind waiters, but settle in and let your eyes acclimatize to the darkness. Choose from a meat, fish, vegetarian or chef’s special menu and see how the darkness heightens your hearing and sense of smell. It’s a rare experience to see how your conversation is altered by not being able to read your sweetheart’s facial expressions.

Details: Dans le Noir, 30-31 Clerkenwell Green, London | Set dinner £42 2 courses

Kitsune’s French Kiss Party

Ditch the inevitably overcrowded romantic restaurant for one of our favourite East London venues, Village Underground. Kitsune host a V-Day party featuring The 2 Bears, Star Slinger, Kaasi and Pyramid & Cesare. Raf Daddy provides us with an exclusive mix packed with woozy tunes to get you in the mood.

“Here’s a mix of woozy, scary, sexy songs about LOVE to keep us chipper in these dark winter days. Not exactly for clubs, more for those indoors having a cuddle. It does get a wee bit lively at the end mind. Looking forward to playing the Kitsune party at Village Underground next Saturday!”

Details: Saturday 13th February, Village Underground | Tickets here

The 2016 Valentine’s Ball

Rave in the vaults. Head down to the tunnels below Waterloo Station for a decadent Valentine’s Ball with pals or bae for a maze of secret rooms, DJs, bands, dancers and performances.

Details: Friday 12th & Saturday 13th February | The Vaults, Waterloo | Ticket details