Great dates do happen

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Dates can be terrible. There are the ones who definitely spent hours Photoshopping their Tinder photos. There are the ones who have just enough conversation to get through the hellos. There are the ones who bring their mum as a chaperone (it happens). Granted, those all make for great stories, but then every now and again there is the thing that makes all the missteps worthwhile: the really great date. It’s a thing of joy. The reason to keep trying.

The Stylist team has been on its fair share of dates, and while there have been clangers (cringe about those here), there have also been some absolute winners. In sponsored_longform with Appletiser, the 100% fruit juice drink, we asked for their best experiences – anonymously, so that we didn’t get annoyed at each other for being smug.

Picture perfect 

“When we were dating, my husband would send me a message out of the blue, showing a picture of something like Camden Town or the Shard. The photo meant I had to meet him there that night and he'd always have a restaurant booked. It would happen at a random time every month and it always felt like a surprise!”

The jet-setters

“It was my 25th birthday and I’d just arrived back home from holidays, so had major jetlag. My friends made dinner reservations at Buddha-Bar because it is literally my favourite restaurant in the world. My boyfriend at the time was not living in the same city as me. Being the anti-romantic person that I am, I really didn’t care that I couldn’t spend my birthday with him. But, in the middle of dinner, a huge bouquet of white roses arrived. On the note there was a really lovely message along with business class tickets my friends and I to fly to London, where my boyfriend lived. We flew the next day and we were picked up at the airport and taken to a suite at Claridge’s. There was a note saying we were booked for high tea at 3pm. My boyfriend met us there and we just had a really amazing weekend. The best part about it all was that he knew how important my friends were to me.”

The stargazers

“I like a low-key vibe when it comes to dating. My favourite date was when I was met by a guy in a lovely park with piping-hot take-away pizza and prosecco! He’d packed prosecco glasses and picnic blankets, and we stayed until it was dark and star gazed. Ha. Cringe, but I loved it!”

Your carriage awaits

“For my birthday, my husband took me to London. After a morning of shopping, we were walking along the river and he said he knew a lovely bar nearby. Then we stopped in front of the London Eye and next thing I knew we had a whole carriage to ourselves, with a butler. We watched the sunset with amazing views. Spoilt rotten!”

What a catch

“I was once told to get dressed as we were going out for lunch. I thought we were walking to the restaurant, but we were actually heading towards the ferry port to catch a ferry to the Isle of Wight. OK, so it rained most of the day and the winds were gale force, but it meant we were able to enjoy being cosy in a cute pub all afternoon. Then we enjoyed a candlelit dinner… because the weather knocked the electricity out.”

But dating isn’t always this romantic – check out some funny and shocking dating stories with Appletiser:

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