The commercial side of Valentine’s Day definitely isn’t everyone’s cup of tea. If you want to do more than eat from the same a la carte menu as last year or cuddle with a tub of cookie dough, there’s plenty going on around the city.
Dirty Dancing Screening
If you haven’t yet found the Jay-Z to your Beyonce, or in this case, the Swayze to your Baby, grab your best lady friend and head to Old Granada Studios to see all the Dirty Dancing action on the big screen. Expect themed cocktails and plenty of street eats plus, in a nod to the classic I carried a watermelon scene, the first ten people to turn up holding one will be granted free entry. You might look a little bonkers en route but you’ll be bagging yourself a free movie night so you can’t complain. 11th February.
Old Granada Studios, Quay Street, M3 3JE
Grab your bestie and head to Apotheca for a night of drinks shaking and cocktail making. This quirky joint offers up an array of zany cocktails and plush elixirs. The sky’s the limit on what flavours or flavour combinations can be achieved but whether you’re drinking a classic or your own concoction, it definitely beats resigning yourself to the sofa. £25 pp. 0161 834 9411
Apotheca, Northern Quarter, M4 1EU
Afternoon Tea for Two
Opt out of singles parties and speed dating and grab your bestie for an afternoon tea you won’t forget in a hurry. Expect everything from rose champagne and Valentine’s concoctions to canapés, chocolate fondue, and signature cherry scones. Booking in for a window package so you can swoon over the view from Manchester’s tallest tower also comes highly recommended.
Cloud 23, Hilton Hotel, M3 4LQ
Club it Up
Don’t fancy spending the night dining between two lovestruck couples? Head over to AATMA for a huge sing-a-long to the likes of Mariah, Celine, Aerosmith and plenty of other heartbreak hits. If you’ve got an ex you’re trying to get over, there’s no better way to purge them out of your system than pounding your fists and letting your freak fly on the dance floor. 10th February
AATMA, Northern Quarter, M1 1DB
Fancy a sultry sally around the dance floor? Looking to learn some sassy new moves? Join Revolucion De Cuba on Wednesday 15th February as they present their Salsa Social. Instead of kicking it to the sultry sounds of RnB with a pretentious Tinder date, thrash your body around to the sounds of salsa and party on into the night. You might make a few friends – and who knows what else? £3
Revolution De Cuba, Peter Street, M2 5QR