San Diego CA— The world still looks a little different than last year, but it doesn’t mean there’s no room for amore in the air. The re-opening of outdoor dining and personal services like hair salons and nail salons will help this Valentine’s Day a little extra special. Italian culture is known for romanticism and San Diego’s Little Italy knows how to keep that romance alive. Spend the afternoon strolling the lively downtown neighborhood, exploring local shops and eateries and drinking in the sunshine with the ones you love.
- Romantic Stroll – Sometimes a little fresh air is all you need! Spend a few hours taking in the vibrant sights of the street-lined trees and vast piazzas. Find yourself enveloped in the bay breeze and sunshine as you walk through the Piazza della Famiglia – the “heart” of Little Italy. Stop and take a moment to enjoy a local coffee from Caffe Italia or James Coffee Co. Don’t forget to document the moment by taking a picture in front of the iconic Little Italy Sign or on the Big Red Chair.
- Prep for a Romantic Meal – Reservation for two at home? Little Italy has all the accoutrements you need to create a special meal. Swing by Carruth Wine Cellars or Pali Wine Co. to search for the perfect bottle of wine to accompany a decadent dinner. Stop into The Market By Buon Appetito or Mona Lisa Italian Foods where you’ll find a variety of meats and cheeses for your Valentine’s Day charcuterie board. For true, rustic Italian style bread and pastries, you won’t want to pass up Solunto Ristorante and Bakery.
- Dinner Date – Prefer to leave the cooking to the pros this year? Enjoy a romantic meal for two outdoors with the twinkling lights. Feast on everything from house made pastas at Barbusa or Bencotto and hand-tossed pizzas at Filippi’s Pizza Grotto to MICHELIN Guide recognized bento boxes at Cloak & Petal and fresh oysters at Ironside Fish & Oyster Bar. Little Italy has everything your culinary heart desires and then some.
- Shop Your Heart Out – Make sure you take the time to spoil yourself or a loved one with a unique and thoughtful gift from the neighborhood’s one-of-a-kind shops. Show your love through pampering with luxurious soaps, fragrances, candles, and other apothecary and household items from Love & Aesthetics. Of course, every holiday deserves a new outfit or accessory. Find just the thing that makes your heart sing with a new outfit from Be Boutique. Accessorize your look with earrings, necklaces, and other accessories from Vocabulary. If you want to make this Valentine’s Day truly memorable, check out Irelia Fine Jewelry for a little something that sparkles!
- The Sweetest Treat – Who says you must wait until after dinner for dessert? Grab a scoop (or two) of ice cream from Salt & Straw or enjoy a scoop of gelato topped with espresso from Pappalecco. For something on the lighter side, check out Holy Paleta or Pop Pops Paletas for a variety of frozen pops made with all-natural ingredients or pick out an assortment of petit desserts from Extraordinary Desserts.
- Prosecco Toast – End the night with a romantic stay at one of Little Italy’s beautiful hotels – Porto Vista Hotel, Carté Hotel or La Pensione Hotel. Nothing like a nice glass of prosecco, while taking in the city views, to end your evening.