Summer is the perfect time to pause and appreciate your love. It’s been a few months since Valentine’s Day, and romance is a celebration of the moments between milestones—the simple gestures that remind each other of your love. Romance thrives on new experiences together, and new restaurants are a great way to re-connect, relax and enjoy an intimate meal.
To celebrate National Romance Month in August, we wanted to answer the question: what are the MOST romantic restaurants in America? A tall order, yes. But we wanted to find the best places to celebrate romance. So, we looked at Yelp reviews to see who mentioned romantic terms the most (Romance Density), evaluated ambiance based on online scores (Place Score), and gave restaurants special weight if they were frequently mentioned as a most romantic restaurant by credible publications (Award Score). This score weighted together, the Big Score, gave us the 15 most romantic restaurants in America. Without further adieu, let’s look at the most romantic spots to share dinner and get lost in each other’s eyes.
15. Il Cielo in Beverly Hills, California
With private rooms and peaceful garden patios, Il Cielo offers seclusion for lovebirds to leisurely dine on classic fare from the Italian countryside. This country-style restaurant in the middle of Beverly Hills has been voted one of Los Angeles’ favorite romantic restaurants by readers of About.com, Zagat and OpenTable. We suggest sitting outside under the sparkling lights for a truly enchanted evening.
Based on 527 reviews, couples love Il Cielo. See what they’re saying on Il Cielo’s Yelp page.
“A whimsical, quiet and romantic restaurant. My fiancé and I always have a great time here. The staff and service is amazing, their food is exquisite, and not to mention what a magical time you’ll have under the shimmering lights and stars.”
— Silva A.
14. Erminia Ristorante in New York, New York
Since opening in 1982, Erminia has continued to be recognized as one of New York’s most romantic restaurants—first by Zagat and again by OpenTable. The Roman-Italian eatery, where proposals are a regular occurrence, claims to serve romance every day and often welcomes back couples celebrating their anniversaries year after year. Though small, the intimate setting is impressive for special occasions and the friendly staff treats guests like family.
See the raving reviews on their Erminia Ristorante’s Yelp page.
“Coming here feels like you’ve been let in on a secret, and this tiny, charming restaurant provides wonderful Roman dishes in a cozy, romantic setting. It’s a tight squeeze till you get settled, but once ensconced we were comfortable and treated to a delicious and special-event-worthy meal.”
— Elizabeth B.
13. Circa 1886 in Charleston, South Carolina
Circa 1886 sets the mood for a romantic evening in downtown Charleston with an elegant dining experience that is both comfortable and cosmopolitan. The restaurant is located in the original carriage house of the historic Wentworth Mansion; cozy and romantic arched booths mimic the original carriage openings in the main dining room.
See what their guests are raving about on Circa 1886′s Yelp page.
“There isn’t a more romantic spot in the city. And, we find ourselves talking about the meal for weeks after.”
12. Briarhurst Manor in Manitou Springs, Colorado
Listed on the National Registry of Historic Places, Briarhurst Manor Estate has a tranquil setting with spectacular views of Pikes Peak. The fairytale Victorian mansion serves Colorado cuisine—game, fish and poultry—in 9 intimate dining rooms. Lauded by both OpenTable and Travel and Leisure magazine as a romantic place to dine, Briarhurst is also a hot spot for weddings.
You’ll find romantic stories, dinner favorites and more on Briarhurst Manor’s Yelp page.
“Briarhurst is one of my wife and I’s favorite places in Colorado Springs. The food and service are always excellent and the grounds are beautiful. Highly recommended for a quiet romantic night out and it’s become a Mother’s Day tradition for us.”
11. The Sky Room in Long Beach, California
The Sky Room sits atop the historic Breakers Hotel in Long Beach where it offers guests 360-degree views of the city lights, a bustling port or the expansive ocean. During Hollywood’s golden age, the restaurant attracted the most romantic celebrities—stars such as Elizabeth Taylor and Cary Grant. Couples still flock to the Art Deco restaurant to celebrate special occasions and share meaningful moments in the restaurant with the philosophy of “dining, dancing and romancing.”
Get a feel for the restaurant’s romantic atmosphere by reading reviews on The Sky Room’s Yelp page.
“The big band was a nice addition to the romantic atmosphere. People were dancing and it was lovely to watch. We had such a wonderful dining experience and I look forward to coming next year for our anniversary.”
— Michelle A.
10. Eiffel Tower in Las Vegas, Nevada
The experience begins in a glass elevator that floats guests to the 11th floor of the Eiffel Tower replica at Paris Las Vegas. Dramatic views of the glittering Las Vegas strip and the dancing waters at the Bellagio fountain set the scene for romance. For couples planning a special occasion, the Eiffel Tower Restaurant offers special packages proposals and weddings.
Not everything stays in Vegas. Read the reviews here: Eiffel Tower’s Yelp page.
“My husband and I ate here after being married on the Eiffel Tower. The service and food was excellent. The view was amazing. We watched the sunset and the Bellagio fountains at our quaint table for two.”
— K. Messy
9. Top of The World in Las Vegas, Nevada
Located more than 800 feet above Las Vegas, the Top of the World Restaurant features culinary delights served in an elegant atmosphere with unmatched views of the city. The restaurant at the top of the Stratosphere Hotel rotates a full 360 degrees every 80 minutes, allowing diners to take in Sin City from every angle. In addition to being known as a romantic place to propose, this restaurant also holds distinctions for “Best Restaurant with a View” from the Las Vegas Review-Journal.
Based on 560 reviews, Top of The World is definitely one of the top romantic spots. See what customers are saying on Top of The World’s Yelp page.
“We celebrated our 29th wedding anniversary by enjoying a wonderful evening at Top of the World. The service was outstanding, and the food was incredible. It was truly a remarkable experience and one we would highly recommend!”
8. White Barn Inn in Kennebunk, Maine
The restaurant at White Barn Inn offers rustic decor, candlelit tables and a floor-to-ceiling view that has been recognized for excellence by Travel and Leisure magazine, Zagat and others. Dine in the restaurant on a delicious prix fixe menu or order a picnic hamper for a romantic lunch on the beach.
Based on 36 reviews, customers are simply enchanted with The White Barn. Read reviews here: White Barn Inn’s Yelp page.
“This beautiful spot is cozy and romantic. Think rustic barn meets art gallery. The food is creative and traditional. Bring your appetite and someone you love!”
— Michael F.
7. The French Room in Dallas, Texas
Accolades for The French Room include quite a few mentions of romance. The restaurant was voted “Most Romantic” in AOL’s City Best, was recognized for ambiance and romance in OpenTable’s annual Diner’s Choice awards, and called “one of the most romantic places on Earth” by Bon Appetit magazine. The gorgeous setting and attentive servers whisk diners back in time to a more romantic era where jackets are required and waiters wore tuxes.
See what guests loved about The French Room at The French Room’s Yelp page.
“Old World elegance. The waiters are lifetime professionals. This is the place to take a date to show you really care. Get dressed up and transport yourself to Europe. I loved how they kept replacing the taper candle on our table as it burned down. They even leave you with breakfast to take home and a rose.”
— Kay E.
6. Quiessence in Phoenix, Arizona
Serving farm-to-table fare in Phoenix, Quiessence is a rustic getaway for foodie couples in Arizona. Enjoy sustainable New American cuisine paired with a selection from one of the state’s most comprehensive wine lists. After dinner, extend the evening with a stroll through the gardens or a nightcap by the fireplace.
Based on 128 reviews, guests loved the essence of this dining spot. Read more at Quiessence’s Yelp page.
“Took our first trip to Quiessence for an anniversary celebration. The ambience was perfect; the staff were wonderful; the food was outstanding and the wine excellent. Best restaurant experience in greater Phoenix if you are looking for a well thought out, quiet celebration.”
5. Log Haven in Salt Lake City, Utah
Log Haven can be found on many regional and national “best of” lists including OpenTable’s “Most Romantic Restaurants”, The Knot’s “Best Ceremony and Reception Venue”, and it’s been Best of Utah’s Romantic Restaurant since 2001, just to name a few. The restaurant’s wilderness setting strikes a balance of casual elegance that is great for quiet conversation and sharing a moment amid the natural beauty of the mountains.
See what customers loved about the venue on Log Haven’s Yelp page.
“The views on the drive up to this place were gorgeous and the waterfall was beautiful. The restaurant was warm and cozy and very private. The service was impeccable and the food was amazing. One of the most romantic nights of my life.”
— Christine L.
4. The Little Door in Los Angeles, California
Take someone special to this Parisian brasserie in Los Angeles serving French cuisine with a Moroccan twist. The romantic courtyard is a popular choice for dining al fresco year-round. One of Gayot’s 2014 Top Valentine Restaurants, The Little Door is an exotic escape for Angelenos looking to spend some quality time together.
Read over 1,086 reviews of this restaurant at The Little Door’s Yelp page.
“Enter thru the little wooden door and immediately you are in another world. It feels like Europe. Two trees tower thru the roof and high candle structures and intimate lighting await you. The view is the restaurant itself. There is an outdoor (semi) with fireplace and other fantastic romantic areas.”
— Gary Fleishman
3. One if by Land, Two if by Sea in New York, New York
Dual fireplaces, a live pianist and an abundance of fresh flowers make this prix fixe restaurant one of the most romantic dining experiences in the city, according to New York magazine. The American cuisine is served inside Aaron Burr’s former carriage house for a meal that’s as steeped in history as it is in romanticism.
See what customers are saying on One if by Land, Two if by Sea’s Yelp page.
“My wife and I went for our anniversary and One if by Land was exactly the right spot! The food is excellent. The oysters were positively divine, the monkfish delicious and the beef Wellington perfect. The service was very friendly and very attentive.”
— The Brugs
2. Zenkichi in Brooklyn, New York
With booths surrounded by bamboo shades and minimal lighting, Zenkichi’s is the perfect setting for an intimate dinner. This modern Japanese brasserie has received OpenTable’s Diner’s Choice award for six years running with recent appearances on Zagat’s Guide to New York’s top romantic restaurants and The Michelin Guide to New York City. With such auspicious recognition, it’s little wonder that it’s close to the top of our list too. If you’re looking for the ultimate date night in the Big Apple, head to Zenkichi to share the seasonal omakasi menu for two—just be sure to reserve well in advance if you’re hoping for a Saturday night table.
Read reviews from fellow lovers over at Zenkichi’s Yelp page.
“The inside of the restaurant is set up like a Zen garden with bamboo and rocks and little wooden paths. It is very romantic and intimate as you can cuddle up with your date in the privacy of your little space.”
— Saba F.
1. Stonehouse in Santa Barbara, California
Few restaurants have the romantic pedigree of San Ysidro Ranch in the Montecito foothills of Santa Barbara. Vivien Leigh and Sir Laurence Olivier exchanged vows in the garden and John and Jackie Kennedy honeymooned at the hotel. It is on these storied grounds that one will also find The Stonehouse Restaurant, a romantic favorite built in a 19th-century citrus packinghouse. Sit under the stars on the ocean-view deck or cozy up to the fireplace in the main dining room for a regional meal prepared with herbs and vegetables grown in the chef’s garden.
Read over 126 reviews, many of which are simply gushing, at Stonehouse’s Yelp page.
“We were seated outside under a canopy of twinkling lights. On either side were trees covered in strands of twinkling lights—quite romantic. Our waiter was exceptionally friendly, knowledgeable about the menu and wine list and attentive, but not hovering. The meal was great and the wine was excellent.”
— Cbreeze Dad
A Month for Romance
How will you be celebrating National Romance Month? In the end, it’s not about how much money you spent on fine dining that expresses your love; it’s the simple gesture of making time to be together that matters. Our advice: wherever you go, bring flowers. After all, it’s the classic and romantic gestures that make any evening simply unforgettable.