We wanted to call this the Valentine’s Day Cheat Sheet, but the word “cheat” just didn’t sound right. Downtown El Paso is arguably the most romantic place in the city of El Paso. Some of the most historical, delicious and prolific restaurants reside in downtown. Venues like the Plaza Theatre not only provide memorable talent to entertain you and your date but simply walking by the theatre at night will light up your evening with the classic array of amber bulbs that frame the marquee.
Photo opportunities abound as you stroll hand in hand, passing beautifully designed Trost buildings and newly erected structures like Southwest University Park. Whether your taste ranges from a cold beer at the world renowned Tap Bar and Restaurant or wine at Anson 11, downtown will frame your special evening without asking for much in return.
Below are specials and suggestions for making your Valentine’s Day something to remember.
Get a room you two!
If you’re planning an overnight stay in the most romantic place in town, these hotels will treat you like royalty.
Double Tree by Hilton
50 Shades of Red Package – Not only do you get a room but you also get a bottle of champagne and chocolate dipped strawberries for $159. The Valentine’s Dinner package at the Fire Restaurant and Bar is $59 per person or $69 per person with a wine pairing. 600 N. El Paso St. Please call for reservations (915) 532-8733 or visit www.doubletreeelpasohotel.com
Holiday Inn Express
For a delightful and affordable overnight stay, the Holiday Inn Express is your hotel. The boutique style and streamlined services are perfect for a pleasant experience. The $99 Valentine’s Package nets you a room, breakfast (the cinnamon rolls are amazing), a bottle of champagne, roses and free shuttle service to downtown restaurants. 409 E. Missouri Ave. For reservations call (915) 544-3333
Camino Real Hotel
Be Our Valentine Package – This bundle package includes a room, dinner, bottle of champagne and chocolate covered strawberries for $239. If you just want dinner for two, for $160 the Dome Restaurant will provide an immaculate meal with live music. 101 S. El Paso St. Call for reservations (915) 534-3000 or visit www.caminorealelpaso.com
A way to a man’s heart is through their stomach. Somehow we think this applies to both genders.
Café Central – recently voted most romantic restaurant at the “Best of the City” awards, this multiple award winning fine dining establishment consistently adheres to quality and an impeccable atmosphere. 109 N. Oregon St. Call for reservations (915) 545-2233 or visit www.cafecentral.com
Anson 11 – Located in the Anson Mills building that was once the tallest building in El Paso, Anson 11 has both a bistro and an upper level fine dining area to enjoy. Blending the best of the old and the new with an elegant yet approachable menu and design, Anson 11 is one of the best downtown has to offer. 303 N. Oregon Ste. 110 Call for reservations (915) 504-6400 or visit www.anson11.com
The El Paso Club – Though the El Paso Club is a private establishment exclusively for members and their guests, Sunday Brunch is open to the public on February 8th from 11 am to 2 pm. At $20 per person the buffet is loaded with everything from pancakes to prime rib. Tasting this array of food may entice you to become a member and remind you that membership does indeed have its privileges. Enjoy this romantic Sunday meal atop the crown of the Chase building with the entirety of downtown El Paso in your purview. 201 E. Main Ste. 1800 Call for reservations (915) 544-1135 or visit www.TheElPasoClub.com
501 Bistro and Bar – Located in the beautiful San Carlos building, 501 Bistro and Bar offers high quality affordable food and drinks with an open patio (weather permitting.) Normally not open on Saturday, this year 501 will not only be open on Valentine’s Day but will be serving a four course meal. 501 Texas Ave. For reservation call (915) 351-6023 or visit www.501bistro.com
The Garden – Union Plaza is home to a handful of restaurants and bars any foodie would love. The Garden offers a fresh ambiance and a creative menu that ranges from mouth-watering burgers to sushi. A special menu will be offered for Valentine’s Day, and if you feel like continuing the party that night, the restaurant will merge into a club setting to dance the night away. 511 Western Ct. For more information call (915) 544-4400 or visit www.thegardenep.com
Pot Au Feu – Next to the historic Gardner hotel is International Restaurant Pot Au Feu. If you’re looking for something with a New York café feel but want hearty food, Pot Au Feu won’t disappoint. The space is cozy yet classy with jazz notes fluttering in the air as you enjoy the food and drink. 307 E. Franklin Ave. For reservations call (915) 503-8158 www.potaufeuelpaso.com
The Green Ingredient – Often visited by health minded celebrities performing in town, The Green Ingredient is one of the few restaurants El Paso has available for vegan, vegetarian or unprocessed food options (meat is on the menu as well). Not only is the food good for you but it is delicious. Located on the ground floor of the Chase building at 201 E. Main Suite 112, the restaurant makes a great romantic setting with glass, subtle lighting and downtown lights. This year, the four course Valentine’s dinner is being served on Friday, February 13th. $45 per person. For more information call (915) 298-1010 or visit www.greeningredienteatery.com
Tabla – Some people have not experienced “Tapas.” Originating in Spain, tapas are any variety of food eaten to keep you filled while traveling from one bar to another. Typically served with drinks, tapas can be any creative portion of food that allows you to enjoy several different tapas in one sitting, while enjoying drinks and company. Tabla is a restaurant that doesn’t rely on a fixed menu, but instead is constantly creating new ways to dazzle the senses. For Valentine’s Day Tabla will offer a tasting menu for two. 115 S. Durango St. Suite D in Union Plaza For more information call (915) 533-8935 www.tabla-ep.com
Café Italia – With no prominent signage Café Italia relies on drawing patrons from word of mouth. People talk when something is good and Café Italia has had people talking about the impressive interior design, brick oven pizzas and fine wine. 504 W. San Antonio Ave. Ste. B For more information call (915) 532-3111 or visit www.thecafeitalia.com
Let’s take in a show!
Downtown is home to several venues and for Valentine’s there are several shows to enjoy with your date.
The legendary Plaza Theatre will host Guys and Dolls on February 11th, powerful crooner Engelbert Humperdinck on February 12th, and the world famous Mariachi Vargas de Tecalitlan on February 14th! Visit www.elpasolive.com to get your tickets!
Many a child has been conceived on the heels of a night at a rock concert. Tricky Falls continues to attract successful bands from both mainstream and underground scenes. Communion of Thieves headlines the show on Friday, February 13th. 209 S. El Paso St. For more information visit www.trickyfalls.com
Be part of history as the El Paso Museum of History unveils the first interactive digital wall in the country on Valentine’s Day! Free admission from 11 am to 8 pm at 510 N Santa Fe St. For more information call (915) 351-3588 or visit www.elpasotexas.gov/history