The Notting Hill Gardens

19 Romantic and Epic Date Ideas We Stole From Movies
This short article was originally published by AskMen UK.
For the films buffs amongst us stuck for date ideas this Valentine’s – fear not, the answer could be right there on your shelf of DVDs, or your saved list on Netflix. So in the name of love (and not finding oneself well and truly in the doghouse) we’ve delved into the annals of cinema history to get the most picturesque, iconic, romantic, or downright cool places from movies to take your partner on a date for Valentine’s Day Wallets at the ready…
The Empire State Building
Sleepless In Seattle (1993)
In The Movie: Sam (Tom Hanks) arrives to get the love of his life and borderline stalker, Annie (Meg Ryan).
The Real Location: The observation deck on the 86th floor.
Romantic Because: It’s incredible spot for a 360° view of NYC, plus there’s a resident saxophonist Thursday to Saturday for extra atmosphere.
On The Date: Take her as close to heaven as possible (quite literally – though at 320m high, check she doesn’t have crippling vertigo) and get the building manager to switch all the lights into a big heart shape. A logistical nightmare, but worth it.
Crab Key Beach
Dr No (1962)
In The Movie: Original Bond girl Honey Ryder ( Ursula Andress ) emerges from the sea. No man – including 007 – is fairly exactly the same again ever.
THE TRUE Location: Laughing Water, a secluded spot across the Roaring River in Ochos Rios, Jamaica, near Ian Fleming’s Goldeneye resort. A favorite spot for weddings Now.
Romantic Because: Never mind romance, that is about pure, unadulterated sexiness.
On The Date: Obtain the formality of a beach picnic and walks over the sand taken care of, before challenging her to a who looks sexiest walking out of your sea” contest.
Casablanca (1942)
In The Movie: The swanky Moroccan club owned by Humphrey Bogart’s surly loverboy (named Rick, unsurprisingly). His old flame walks in Then. Of all gin joints…
The Real Location: It had been filmed in the studio but try Rick’s Café , a tribute restaurant that opened in Casablanca in 2004.
Romantic Because: It is the setting of cinema’s most timeless romance.
On The Date: Treat her to a glass or two from the movie (a French 75” cocktail can do), ask the pianist to play it, again”, then pack her off on a plane with her husband before she regrets it for the others of her life.
Luke’s Farm
Star Wars (1977)
In The Movie: Tatooine moisture farm and the childhood home of Jedi Knight-in-the-making Luke Skywalker
THE TRUE Location: The Hotel Sidi Driss , a network of caverns in the Tunisian village of Matmâta. The movie set features have already been restored recently so guests can feel a lot more Star Warsy.
Romantic Because: For all those couples who worship Star Wars such as a religion, the romantic Force is strong with this particular one. Plus, the sunsets are using this world.
On The Date: As long as you’re not trying to date your sister, you’re laughing.
Groundhog Day (1993)
In The Movie: Phil Connors ( Bill Murray ) lives in a constant time-loop of the same day, giving him chance to practice his chat-up technique on Rita (Andie McDowell).
Romantic Because: If you balls it up the very first time, you have infinite number of chances to get it right.
On The Date: Order sweet vermouth on the rocks with a twist, drink to world peace, and waffle on about French poetry.
Santa Carla Amusement Park
The Lost Boys (1987)
In The Movie: Raucous fairground hangout of Santa Carla’s resident beach bums, rockers and, erm, teenage vampires.
The Real Location: The historic Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk , a humdinger of an amusement park built back in 1907.
Romantic Because: It has all the fun and frolics of the fair – candy floss, giant teddies, the big dipper etc – and there’s an awesome retro video game arcade. Which the ladies love. Probably.
The Date: Show off your hoopla and goldfish-winning skills, but keep a stake handy for all those damn vampires.
Brief Encounter (1945)
In The Movie: The meeting place of housewife Laura (Celia Johnson) and Dr Alec Harvey (Trevor Howard), whose unconsummated affair is one of cinema’s greatest ever tearjerkers.
The Real Location: Carnforth Station , now a heritage site with a special Brief Encounter Refreshment Room”.
Romantic Because: The train station hook-up is a staple of old timey love. Even Del Boy and Racquel met at Waterloo in homage to Brief Encounter.
On The Date: Meet under the clock, embrace dramatically as an old steam train pulls in, and promise to take her away. Providing she’s got a travel card, of course.
There’s Something About Mary (1998)
In The Movie: Ted ( Ben Stiller ) achieves his lifetime’s ambition when he bags a date with Mary (Cameron Diaz) and her spunky new hairdo.
The Real Location: The bar in the Cardozo Hotel in Miami, Florida.
Romantic Because: Sometimes it really does work out with the girl of your dreams.
On The Date: Big cocktails and then a walk out in the Miami evening heat. Just don’t let her use your hair gel. Not on the first date, anyway.
(500) Days of Summer (2009)
In The Movie: Tom ( Joseph Gordon Levitt ) and Summer (Zooey Deschanel) play happy-ever-after in the mock-up kitchens and bedrooms.
The Real Location: IKEA in Burbank, California. Though, to be fair, any IKEA will do.
Romantic Because: Most women love only a day in IKEA. That isn’t a sexist generalisation – that’s actual scientific fact. If it generally does not backfire , that is…
On The Date: Make an effort to replicate their cutesy game of make-believe before you inevitably get lost in the maze of domestic hell and purchase a bag of tea lights.
THE ENTIRE Monty (1997)
In The Movie: Salt-of-earth boozer where Gaz (Robert Carlyle) and his boys do the, well, full monty.
Romantic Because: Hardly romantic, but an excellent possiblity to show you’re modern man enough to take care of the carnage of ladies night”.
On The Date: It is a proper old-school club, so halves of bitter, a packet of crisps and no-nonsense banter. And keep your clothes on, regardless of how attractive you imagine your dancing would be to the opposite sex.
Park Hyatt Piano Bar
Lost In Translation (2003)
In The Movie: Over-the-hill actor Bob (Bill Murray) and lonely wife Charlotte ( Scarlett Johansson ) meet, bonding over a dry whisky and drier banter even.
THE TRUE Location: The Park Hyatt is really a real hotel, on the top 14 floors of Tokyo’s Shinjuku Park Tower building. The scenes were filmed in its top-floor NY Grill.
Romantic Because: The jaw-dropping view of the Tokyo lights.
On The Date: Bill Murray’s lethargic lothario” act is apparently working wonders for him, so give a crack.
Notting Hill (1999)
In The Movie: Floppy-haired irritant Will (Hugh Grant) and Hollywood bombshell Anna (Julia Roberts) climb right into a private garden to steal a scenic midnight smooch.
THE TRUE Location: Rosmead Gardens, a gated communal spot in actual Notting Hill.
Romantic Because: It’s all terribly posh and English.
On The Date: In the event that you manage to clamber on the wall without breaking your neck, don’t spoil as soon as by singing Ronan sodding Keating at her.
Universal Studios
Mallrats (1995)
In The Movie: T. S. (Jeremy London) plans the best movie nerd marriage proposal – when Jaws pops out of your water.
THE TRUE Place: The Jaws ride at Universal Studios , which closed down permanently in 2012 after two decades of not working properly.
Romantic Because: It’ll show you’ve planned a whole Florida trip around her special moment, and not just because you wanted to go on the new King Kong ride. Yeah, right.
On The Date: The Jaws ride has since been replaced with Harry Potter so do something magical, like pulling a bunch of flowers out of your sleeve. Classic.
Back to the Future (1985)
In The Movie: Marty McFly finally helps his mum and dad fulfill their romantic destiny (or should that be density”?) at the high school dance.
The Real Location: The Hollywood United Methodist Church on Franklin Avenue, Los Angeles.
Romantic Because: George and Lorraine slow dancing to Earth Angel defined true love for the ‘80s generation.
On The Date: Impress your date by hiring a ‘50s band, punching out a bully, then inventing rock ‘n’ roll with an impromptu rendition of Johnny B. Goode.
When Harry Met Sally (1989)
In The Movie: An eye-opener for men everywhere as Sally (Meg Ryan) fakes a worryingly realistic orgasm for on-off lover Harry (Billy Crystal).
The Real Place: Nothing fake here – Katz’ Deli is 100% authentic. It’s on Houston St in New York’s Lower Side East.
Romantic Because: A date at Katz’s shows you’re willing to put the work in where that Harry clearly wasn’t.
On The Date: Resist the temptation to hilariously fake an orgasm yourself. It’ll spoil the mood and get you barred for life.
The King Henry
Withnail & I (1987)
In The Movie: Withnail (Richard E. Grant) and I (Paul McGann) sack off the welly-buying and get utterly arseholed.
Romantic Because: On some dates you just can’t drink enough.
The Date: Smash in as much booze as possible and stumble over to the Penrith Tea Rooms (a pharmacy in real life) and demand cake and the finest wines known to humanity.
Queensboro Bridge
Manhattan (1979)
In The Movie: In one of American cinema’s most iconic shots, Isaac (Woody Allen) and Mary (Diane Keaton) sit beneath the bridge and talk until sunrise.
The Real Location: Riverview Terrace on Sutton Square , along the East River. The bench is over, however.
Romantic Because: It perfectly sums up the night time”, once you wile away the hours and move on to know one another. Shows your sensitive side, fellas.
On the Date: Have a moonlit walk down across the riverside. Do not bleat on about death an excessive amount of like Woody Allen. It is a buzz kill.
Bridget Jones’ Diary (2001)
In The Movie: The climatic kiss as Bridget finally seals the offer with posh knob Mark Darcy (Colin Firth).
THE TRUE Location: The Royal Exchange Building at Cornhill, which substituted for Borough Market in the film.
Romantic Because With a little snow plus some soppy music playing in the backdrop, you can’t fail.
The Date: Meet her in the pub with something special. Recommend a fancy diary rather than new couple of giant Bridget Jones knickers.
Rocky (1976)
In The Movie: Rocky Balboa (Sylvester Stallone) makes movie history by overcoming the chances and running up lots of steps.
THE TRUE Location: The Philadelphia Museum of Art , or even more specifically, the 72 stone steps before it.
Romantic Because: What better spot to woo a lady together with your raw power and masculinity?
On The Date: In true Rocky-style, replenish the steps and celebrate at the very top like you’re the Men’s Champion of the planet. If she’s not impressed, it had been never designed to be.
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