The year is 2020 and dating has never been more difficult! And those meticulously-crafted on-line profiles, workshopped opening lines and deciding how long to leave someone left on “seen” all count for nothing if you line up a terrible first date. The old dinner and a movie is so passé – if you want to get ahead in the dating world you gotta think outside the box and veer away from the beaten path. And fortunately for you Perth is home to an influencer’s flooded story bar’s worth of options to impress that special someone.
Oh, and if you do want to go the traditional route, here’s a tidy list of our favourite date night restaurants around Perth.
Reach for the stars at the Perth Observatory
Located in Bickley just a short 25km out of the city, the Perth Observatory will provide the perfect backdrop for a couple of dreamers to look upwards into the fresh night air and pondering of the universe. There’s plenty of night tour options, and for the more adventurous folks out there you can abseil down the Telescope Dome during the month of June – head to their website for more info.
Photo via @zalkp
337 Walnut Rd, Bickley
Graze some Farmer’s Markets
Farmer’s Markets can be an excellent way to get to know someone, specifically what they’re into food wise. Fresh fruit and veg? Gluten free treats? Breakfast burritos? Crepes? Nothing beats a chilled weekend morning walk around one Perth’s many great Farmer’s Markets. It’s also an awesome way to support local suppliers directly and yourself some fresh produce in the process. Pro-tip: Buy all the bits and pieces to put together a mean brunch or picnic with your date, and keep the good times rolling!
Brunch it up at Casa Bianchi
And speaking of brunch, Casa Bianchi‘s eclectic layout, lush gardens, koi ponds and cane furniture all combine for a splendid late morning date with that potential future significant other. It’s also dog friendly, if you wanna show your puppy pal off early in proceedings, and the casual atmosphere will keep it breezy.
93 Scarborough Beach Rd, Mount Hawthorn
Double up at the Galaxy Drive-In Cinema
Going to the movies has traditionally been a stock standard dating idea, which is weird when you think about it – why go somewhere with someone to not talk for two hours? At Perth’s only drive-in theatre you can have the best of both worlds as you watch movies while getting to know your date in the intimate surrounds of your (presumably-not-falling-apart) car. Weekends are for double-header showings, or drop by during the week for just a single movie, and establish early your all important film compatibility.
Photo via @stumckay
157-167 Goollelal Dr, Kingsley
Lay under the stars at an Outdoor Cinema
We know we know, we said you gotta avoid going to the movies but like the drive-in above, outdoor cinemas can be a heap of fun outside of just watching a movie in a dimly lit theatre. They’ve usually got a sweet little bar you can grab a drink at beforehand, along with a nice meal to eat while you watch. Often there’s bean bags for snuggling up together, and who doesn’t love laying around under a starry sky with that special someone?
Photo by Ranson Media
Get spooooky in the Freo Prison
The Fremantle Jail hosts Torchlight Tours every Wednesday and Friday night, providing the perfect opportunity to test your date’s bravery. Plus you’ll get a ghoulish history lesson from one of their experienced guides, and ample opportunity to provide write my paper a comforting hug should things get extra haunting down there.
Photo via @benadlington
Test your skills with some retro gaming (+booze?)
Want to impress your upcoming date with your awesome gaming skills? Of course you do! No we’re not talking about parking up on your couch forcing them to watch you play GTA 5, get out there and fiddle some joysticks together at one of a few potential places: Nostalgia Box is Australia’s only video game console museum, and it’s an awesome place to visit with over 100 consoles on exhibit, with a heap of them available to play. Alternatively Palace Arcade in Northbridge and Victoria Park are awesome late night bars filled with excellent booze, food and dozens of old school arcade machines! Pro tip: Head there on a Wednesday and spend $20 on the bar to get unlimited gaming.
Shoot some hoops and dunk a taco at Donnie Taco
For those more sporting inclined, how could you argue with the combination of some casual hoop-shooting followed by a tasty taco or two at Donnie Taco in West Perth? The perfect spot for a brekky or lunch date, show off your skills (or lack there of) with a few hoops afterwards. They have some great deals during the week as well – just head to the website and make your first date a slam-dunk.
Photo via @ipshow11
Live, love, laugh at The Comedy Lounge
Struggling to think of ways to break the ice? Why not have someone do it for you at The Comedy Lounge? It’s open Wednesday to Saturday, smack bang in the middle of the city’s hotel precinct along Murray St – just look out for the colourful alleyway halfway between Tiger Lil’s and Amplifier. From there you head up the stairs – careful to note the comedy luminaries who’ve already performed at the venue – before nabbing a beverage from their well-stocked bar, scoping their chill food menu and settling into the dimly lit comedy lounge.
Take a hike
Nothing will test the relationship (or reveal a first date’s inner workings) like a hike up in the hills. You wanna get to know someone on a date, a nice long walk through the bush (or by the beach) will certainly help things along nicely. Fortunately for you Perth has plenty of options, both within the city surrounds, and a little further off the beaten track. For a real treat why not hit the trails where you’ll find a waterfall at the end?
Photo by @chloektodd
Find some other fish in the sea
Alright we’re really testing your dating abilities now, but hey if you really wanna get outside the box under the ocean is probably as far out as you can get. The average joe can go for long walks along the beach or pack an umbrella and sit seaside for the day, but if it’s time to take things to the next level, let’s go below sea level. Perth has plenty of fantastic snorkelling options, many of which are pretty chill and also located at great beaches that are worth visiting regardless. May we humbly suggest Coogee’s Omeo Wreck to get the ball rolling.
Or dine under the sea at AQWA
Looking for something a little fancier? Why not spoil your SO at AQWA’s exclusive Dine Beneath The Sea Experience? You’ll enjoy a romantic table for two in the underwater tunnel, with a meal specially prepared by AQWA’s Executive Chef and the best part of all – no kids running around! You’ll also have the chance to browse the exhibits in an adults-only setting for a whole experience that lasts about three hours. Head here for more info.
Find love on the fairway at Oasis Supa Golf
If the bright neon lights and pop culture panache of Holy Moly feels like a bit too much, why not head to Oasis Supa Golf in the Swan Valley and upgrade to the (super) big boys league. With oversized clubs and balls along a shorter course it’s a lot easier than normal golf, along with being an excellent chance to get outdoors and get some fresh air.
Photo via @truedeez
Or play some much smaller golf
Thanks to being a nice fun, outdoor activity instead of an indoor, germ-ridden one, mini golf is all the rage once again and there’s new courses popping up all over the place. There’s courses of all different kinds, and many of them make for excellent date day/night options. Like the rolling open greens of Wembley’s huge course, Wanneroo’s expansive Botanic Gardens, booze-fuelled Holy Moly or even the tripped out Glowing Rooms in South Freo, there’s something to suit any dating occasion.
Send down some sexy strikes at Ten Pin Bowling
Ten Pin Bowling has had a bit of a comeback in recent years, with venues like The Lookout and Amplifier installing them as an added value element to drinking and music, both of which are good options if you want to combine your bowl with a boogie and booze. We also challenge you to take a trip down memory lane and head to the one of the classics – nothing will get your date in the mood like the nostalgic sounds of glam 80s and 90s rock’n’roll, the clanging of pinball machines and the smell of succulent, chicken salt-coated hot chips on offer at old school bowling lanes like Rosemount Bowl in North Perth or Super Bowl in Melville.
Photo via @ibreacain
Bury the hatchet once and for all
Did you know Perth has not one but two places you can aggressively throw an axe at a wall? You can swing ’em at Lumber Punks in East Perth, or MANIAX in Northbridge, with both having their positives. Lumber Punks is situated right amongst a couple of East Perth’s coolest bars – Bright Tank and Whipper Snapper Distillery – meaning you’ve also got a post-throw place to hang, while MANIAX is fully licensed, so you don’t even have to leave.