Nestled in the heart of downtown is Aspire. You can dine al fresco in the courtyard or rooftop terrace and stare into each other’s eyes over a plate of Honey Pancakes with sweet Cabot butter and maple syrup. While the Duck and Bunny is charming during winter, what with its fireplaces and all, it’s even more so in the summer. Enjoy a savory crepe or their Eggs Bun-a-Duck in a quaint English garden patio. Afternoon Tea (finger sandwiches, scones, sweets and tea) is served all day long.
After you’ve snuggled up at the snuggery, it’s time to spend your sweetie’s hard-earned dollars. Every Saturday from 10am-2pm the Providence Open Market hits Lippitt Park. There you can buy handmade art, indie crafts, jewelry and handbags. Nothing says love like, “Buy me something!” The Valley Street Flea Market (500 Valley, 521-3532) features antiques, furniture and clothing but more importantly some top-notch people watching.
Insider Tip: El Taconazo is a sketchy-looking on-site metal shack that serves up some of the best tacos in the city. Fear not.
Take a hand-in-hand stroll down the Blackstone Boulevard Walking Path. It’s 3.2 miles round trip, and takes you past some of the most grand homes in the city. Stop to admire the greenery and flowers on a bench built for two. Did you pass on the taco shack? You must be getting hungry. Hop in the car and head to the Hill. Become one with an outdoor table at Potenza’s Ristorante. Chef Walter grew up in Italy and his food tastes even better enjoyed in their hidden Italianate patio.
Spice it up, Julia Roberts and Richard Gere style, at a chic historic downtown hotel. Thursdays on the Terrace at the Biltmore brings live jazz music to the hotel’s third-floor lounge from 5-8pm. Just try to stay off the piano. Or, snuggle up on a blanket together and enjoy a Concert Under the Elms (pictured above) on the lawn of the John Brown House. Each Thursday at 6:30pm, a different band (Latin, jazz, blues) performs under a canopy of trees. Bravo Brasserie sells pizza on-site, which you can wash down with a Granny Squibb’s iced tea. Order a large lemon mint with two straws – sharing is caring.
Every Thursday at dusk, head to Grant’s Block (corner of Westminster and Union Streets) for Movies on the Block. Here it’s perfectly acceptable to drink outside while catching a flick under the stars. Sure beats your living room, no?
Of course, you two lovebirds must hit up WaterFire (pictured below), where on several evenings throughout the season, you can stroll hand-in-hand past bonfires that seemingly float atop the rivers downtown. While you’re there, check out the TD Bank Ballroom and take a dance lesson smack-dab in the center of Turk’s Head Place. Or perhaps you want to be catered to – La Gondola allows you to take in the sights as your gondolier paddles and sings to you.
Have a late dinner outside at Al Forno where romantic shabby chic décor and top-notch cuisine rule, especially when you’re eating on the terrace under the overhanging garden. CAV offers outdoor dining in the summer and is oh-so-romantic, inside or out. On the other end of town is Loie fuller’s. You can sit out back, in a candlelit Japanese-inspired rock garden, and enjoy a bottle of Veuve Clicquot with your meal. Cheers.