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Save or Splurge?!

Friday, May 27, 2011

Whether it’s a first date or your 50th wedding anniversary, choosing a date-night place is not easy. But Rhea Dhanbhoora and Henna Achhpal list a variety of options to fit every budget...

An indoor picnic:
Mumbai isn’t the best place for an outdoorsy picnic but if you think your date will appreciate a more casual setting, try a picnic on your building terrace. It’s romantic and private. Lay a mat on the ground, bring out the wine glasses and some delicious food and lay back, under the stars.

Hint: If you have an mp3 player, connect it to a dock or portable speakers and play some soft music in the background to set the mood. You can score some great mixes online for indoor picnics, such as this one on iTunes — www.itunes.apple.com/ca/album/indoor-picnic-music/id159157480. Also, wine is a
great date drink but doesn’t always have to be expensive. Try a bottle of Sula Satori, which retails for `500 for 750ml.

Try new cuisine: Is your date always looking to try new things? Why not take it one step further and make it part of the date? Find out what cuisine they haven’t sampled and do your research. That way, you can both enjoy the experience of trying something new. Just make sure that your date does like
trying new types of food or they’ll be stuck with a salad and some fries all night.

Hint: Visit www.burrp.com to find food festivals that may coincide with the night of your date. That way, you can try various dishes without having to waste time wondering what to order. You can check out different menus online at www.zomato.com. They even tell you the prices so you’ll know how much
cash to carry.

Have a movie night: These days, even a simple movie can be cruel on the pocket. Ditch the cinema hall, get innovative and organise your very own movie night in your living room. Judging by what your date would prefer, get a few movies in the genre they would like best or stay in safe territory by sticking to
some good ol’ classics. Crack out some popcorn and a few beers and you’ve got your perfect date.

Hint: You’ll get ideas and the movies at www.rental.bigflix.com/bigflix/Home. Or make your way down to your local DVD rental store and pick one up for approximately `100.

Go to the theatre: While a play might not be the perfect place for a first date as there’s little opportunity to interact, going for one gives you the chance to ask your date for a coffee later on so the two of you can discuss what you thought of it.

Hint: NCPA and Prithvi would make for perfect dates. Tickets are inexpensive and cost anywhere from `150-`500 on an average. Visit www.ncpa mumbai.com and www.prithvitheatre.org to find a schedule and prices.

Stroll on the beach: The beach is the perfect place to have a budget friendly, but extremely romantic date. It makes for the perfect excuse to hold hands, dip your toes gently in the water and watch the sky

changing colours while conversation flows. Stop at stalls and have something to eat or drink, soak up the culture and let the date flow from there.

Hint: Juhu beach is extremely crowded in the evenings but an early morning or late night visit makes for a peaceful stroll. Try the Pav Bhaji (`60) and indulge in some Gola (`30). Make it a date with a difference — watch the sun rise instead of the clichéd sunset. Just make sure your date is a morning person!

Make it artsy: If you’re dating someone who loves the arts, the perfect first date could be tickets to an art show or a book reading. However, make sure that it’s their idea of an evening out too. And as with the theatre, you could always follow up the show or reading with a coffee. You could even simply stroll
along, look at a new collection and indulge in some easy conversation.

: Visit an art gallery such as Jehangir Art Gallery or check out www.mumbai.org.uk /entertainment/art-galleries for a list of galleries you can visit. Entry is usually free, so stroll around and then go to the nearest Barista or Cafe Coffee Day and spend on some coffee (usually priced approximately from `60

Amusement park: So your date loves adventure but you can’t afford to take them on a safari or a nature trail? If you want your first date to be filled with thrills and activity, try an amusement park. You won’t be burning a hole through your pocket but it will be a fun filled date for those who appreciate the
adrenaline rush.

We hope, that like us, you’re thinking of Essel World (Entry is Rs.410 on weekdays and Rs.500 on weekends.) Try the Ice Skating there; it’s the perfect couple activity.

Hit the right notes:
You may not know how to play an instrument, but taking your date for a live show will go down well too. If your date isn’t much of a talker but loves to show off their moves, try making your way down to a club. You could meet for a drink first so you can get acquainted with each other.
Dancing is also perfect because it allows you to get over the stiff awkwardness of a first date and lets you get close easier. There’s nothing wrong with close dancing, just make sure your dance moves are PG.

Hint: Try heading down to Blue Frog, or Hard Rock Cafe. Entry is approximately `350-`500 depending on the act playing.

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