Last week we did the Cheap Date Challenge (click here if you missed it), and loved it! So we thought we would do the total opposite for this post, Over The Top.
We have been watching Night In/Night out, a BuzzFeed/Tasty series on Facebook. We love Ned and Ariel’s perspective on their dates. They cook a recipe at home, then compare it to a Over The Top version at a restaurant. Sometimes the food they made at home and the experience they had cooking together makes the Night In their favorite, but that is not always the case. Sometimes the experience of spending a lot of money, getting dressed up, and getting an amazing dining experience is in the end what they would want to do again.
So what makes a date over the top? It has to be something you normally can not do. For us that meant dressing up, staying somewhere overnight, going to top rated restaurants, and getting a luxury experience. However, you may remember from last week, that we are on a major budget, so we cannot afford to do the Over The Top date we would love to do. However we recently went on an extravagant date and decided to tell you about it especially since it is our favorite date we have ever been on!
It was Valentines day of 2018, we had been together for 5 1/2 years. It was the first time we went on a weekend trip alone for a vacation. We had traveled together since the beginning of our relationship, but always with friends or family. The only other time was when we drove straight to Nashville to pick up Aspen (one of our dogs) and drove home the next day. This was something we had been looking forward to doing forever!
The day before Valentines day, we found out Zac didn’t have to work for the next three days. That meant we could really enjoy the holiday together! However, it was last minute so we had to go somewhere local. Boston is only an hour and a half drive away from us, which we often forget! We quickly found a nice movie theatre that was playing the new Fifty Shades, since it had become a tradition for us to watch it when the next sequel came out each year on Valentines day. We checked Brilliant Earth to see if they had any appointment slots to view wedding bands, since we got engaged in December. We called Smith & Wollensky, one of the top rated restaurants in Boston, and made a reservation for 9pm the next day. We figured that if we had a few things planned, then we would just figure out the rest when we got there.
We woke up on Valentines day, had breakfast together, packed our bag, and were on our way! We were able to get a morning appointment to view wedding bands in Brilliant Earth’s private showroom. Zac purchased a beautiful pear engagement ring from them to propose on Christmas Eve. We loved their customer service and the way they treat their clients, so we decided to get our wedding bands from them as well. The showroom is private, so you have to have an appointment to view their jewelry. We rang a bell and were escorted into a beautiful waiting room. They then brought us into a room full of glass cases that had absolutely stunning necklaces, earrings, and rings. They sat us down and discussed what type of wedding bands we were looking for. They cleaned Shelby’s engagement ring so it would sparkle like all of their pristine jewelry. The experience is so different than shopping at your typical jewelry store. You are one on one with someone who wants to hear your love story and wants to help you find your perfect rings! We love shopping with them and will be purchasing the beautiful wedding band that goes perfectly with Shelby’s engagement ring, and many other pieces of jewelry in the future! We also asked the sweet jewelry specialist if she had any recommendations for us to stay since we had not booked a hotel for the night. She told us about the Lenox and how it was right in the middle of everything we had planned, so it was perfect!
We checked into The Lenox hotel, and let me tell you, it was the best $250 we ever spent. They treated us like royalty! They sent us up in the elevator to get settled into our room on the top floor, and about 10 minutes later, the bellhop arrived with our bags. He hung up Zac’s suit, our winter coats, and got us ice for our water. We wanted to spend the extra money for a luxury experience and we loved every second of it! We could have stayed in any hotel in the city, but the extravagant crown molding, red and gold colors, and amazing staff made the stay extraordinary and was very fitting for Valentines Day.
After taking some selfies with the awesome view of The Prudential right outside our window, we headed out for our movie. We took the T. And hated it. We missed the train we were supposed to get on by two minutes, the guy helping us country folk (we both grew up on farms and rarely took public transportation) told us we had to wait for that train again (later we found out that any train would have brought us to our destination). We hiked it from the stop to the movie theatre, just in time for the end of the previews. The Regal Fenway Theatre was amazing and so worth the hassle of the T. We got hotdogs and lounged in big leather recliners with pull out tables. The movie was excellent, and we had a great time relaxing together. After that, we still had time to kill before our dinner reservations, so we ended up using Uber (thank goodness for Uber!) back to the hotel. We took a nap, enjoyed the soft sheets and Lindt chocolates. I wish we could have brought those sheets home! We then went downstairs for appetizers.
City Table was our favorite dinning experience in Boston during our trip. We loved the atmosphere, the food, and Zac loved their drinks. We had a fresh made pretzel and beer cheese and pork belly and grits. They were yummy! We left and went to Smith and Wollensky, only to return back since we liked City Table more! We sat at a hightop booth right next to the bar and enjoyed a chocolate mousse and talked all night.
The next day we woke up to breakfast in bed (yay room service!), went shopping, and just enjoyed being away from home together. The break from the normal was so needed, we had so much time to just talk to each other, stress free, and enjoy making memories together. Over all, our trip cost us about $500 with parking, shopping, the hotel, and dinner. We learned it is cheaper to park at your hotel, and use Uber to get around. We would have saved money had we known that at the beginning since we payed for parking twice, once on the street at Brilliant Earth $40, then it was $49 for the night at The Lenox which allows unlimited in and out.
What would we do again?
We would spend the extra money to stay at The Lenox again. Staying at a nicer hotel makes your trip feel extra special. We have stayed at hotels that were around $80-120 a night, and they are nice, but you do not receive the extra effort that the staff puts in to make sure you have a great stay. For an Over The Top date, the Lenox is absolutely perfect.
Take an Uber to and from everywhere! They are cheap and arrive within 2 minutes of needing one (well at least in Boston they do!). We had to download the app since Uber is not really a thing where we live. Uber is not really fancy, but it is ten times nicer than the T so if you are looking for a better experience, Uber is the way to go.
See a movie in a nicer theatre. Yes, you may pay more for the nice seats, but that makes the movie so much better! We are waiting for a movie theatre that serves appetizers and alcohol, that will then be our go to for date nights!
Expensive dates like this are not often for us, so we could not go and do it again for this challenge. We are going to make that a date challenge as well, how to make a regular date extraordinary! Keep an eye out for that one! However, if you have not been on an Over The Top date in the last 6 months to a year, and you can afford it, do it! Hop in your car and go somewhere for the weekend! Stay somewhere besides your home, there is something about staying in a hotel that makes it feel special (maybe because you don’t have dishes or laundry)! Go to a nice restaurant. Dress up! How often do you get to feel amazing about the way you look? Go somewhere that requires reservations or appointments. Go shopping somewhere fancy, even if you don’t buy anything. Take some time to do something special with the one you love. It is important to spoil yourselves sometimes! The memories are so worth it!
Let us know what you would plan as an Over The Top Date! Would you go away? Follow us on our date challenge and try them yourselves! Make them unique to your relationship, and make sure to tag us so we can follow your journey as well! #TheDateChallenge