Queen City Date Night: Center City | Charlotte NC Travel & Tourism
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Queen City Date Night: Center City

Whether it’s for a first date or a big anniversary with your soul mate, the city is imbued with special things to do for two.

By Emily Farrington Smith

There’s quite possibly nothing more romantic than the holiday season and date nights spent entwined under mistletoe and twinkle lights, all bundled up in winter coats and scarves. So, grab your partner and enjoy this romantic Uptown date night, complete with ice skating, dinner and–duh—decadent chocolate.

String up your skates for a night of gliding under the stars at WBT Holiday on Ice, part of Holidays at the Hall at the NASCAR Hall of Fame. The ice rink reclaims its seasonal home on the Hall’s plaza beginning Nov. 18. Welcoming revelers through Jan. 8, this winter wonderland in the heart of Uptown brings cold-weather charm to a Southern city known for mild winters. Delight in the breathtaking views of the city’s skyline as you skate hand in hand, taking in the holiday décor. This year’s special events include a date night theme, a Harry Potter night and a Disney Princess day.

With the rosy glow of winter’s chill still beaming on your cheeks, step off of the streets of the Queen City into what feels like a European bistro. At Bernardin’s Restaurant, you’ll admire worldly art work, become mesmerized by tempting aromas and crave each plate that passes you by. Bernardin’s Restaurant has been voted one of the best fine-dining experiences in Charlotte, and it’s easy to see why. Choose a booth up front so you can cozy up with a glass of wine and people watch on the festive streets of Center City. House favorites include the roasted Muscovy duck, the wild-caught Atlantic salmon and the grilled pepper-crusted filet mignon, each of which arrives at your table accompanied by a sauce and sides that flawlessly complement its flavors. But do us one favor: save room for dessert.

With the notes of a fine wine still lingering on your palate, enjoy a brisk post-dinner stroll up Tryon Street to Bar Cocoa, which is tucked inside the first level of The Ritz-Carlton, Charlotte. Intricate confections and a luxurious vibe set the stage for what is arguably the city’s premier chocolate haven. Here, the in-house chocolatier expertly crafts delicate morsels begging to be devoured. Bar Cocoa also creates house-made pastries, French macarons, cakes, pies and gelato. Plus, the spot offers classes for chocolate lovers who want to get behind the counter. Pick your dessert, pair with a warm mug of hot cocoa and savor the perfect (date) nightcap.

For more date night ideas in Charlotte, visit charlottesgotalot.com

This article ran in the November 2016 issue of Charlotte Happenings.