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    Some suggestions that go beyond the usual flowers and candy routine to win you brownie points today

    It is Valentine’s Day again and regardless of how you really feel about this Hallmark holiday, you might want to make this day extra special. True, the Ritz Carlton is offering to chauffeur a couple around town in a Rolls Royce, check in at their presidential suite, plus a whole lot of spa pampering, fine wining and dining for Rs 5 lakh a night. As is the Leela Palace with their more modest pamper package at Rs 42,000 per night. But there are also some innovative ways to make some great memories, we say. Here’s our pick.

    Two to tango
    Director Arati Punwani-Sunawala, of Tarantismo Creative Dance Company will teach you salsa, jazz, belly dancing or freestyle contemporary moves to wow your partner. “We are happy to choreograph a dance sequence that tells your love story and add in some of your special moves,” says the dancer. So sign up for a private lesson at Tarantismo. Rs 3,000 upwards. Details: 8884758851

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    Get sketchy
    Get expressive through doodles and romantic messages today at Starbucks. Just ask for the Starbucks gift mug, grab a pen and let your creativity flow. The object of your affection might just be bowled over by your artistry. Makes a nice desktop keep sake too. Rs 1,450. 7th Block, Koramangala. Details: 65690134

    Simple solutions
    CYCLERCITY, the city’s only bike messenger service has a special flower and gift delivery deal for your eco-warrior prince or princess today. They will also go that extra mile and help find the perfect gift if you are short on ideas. Rs 70 upwards. At RT Nagar. Details: 69999880s

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    Bottled up
    Create customised fragrances with the help of perfumer Ally Mathan. Based exactly on what you want your scent to convey, Mathan and her team will create unique fragrances that can be used on their own or added to soaps and shower gels too. `1,00,000 upwards. At the production unit in Domlur. Details: 9845516431

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    Shutter Bug
    City-based photographer Pratidhai Tamang will create a host of memories at this special photo-shoot customised to suit you as a couple. Think mood lighting, candid shots, themes, period costumes, outdoorsy fun or even a full-fledged glamour shoot that you will cherish for years to come. He also does films with a short storyline and suitable setting. Rs 3,000 upwards for an hour. Details: pratidhani.com

    Picnic for two
    Go old-school this time round with a charming picnic basket under the stars. The Oberoi puts together all things delicious and gourmet, as a special treat for the one you love. Apart from the usual fresh bread, wine and cheese, they are happy to customise your cakes in shapes and flavours of your choice, and pop in some Belgian cookies and liquor chocolates too. Think almond, crunchy caramel and white chocolates on the picnic menu — all heart shaped if you want as well! Sweet loving, indeed. Rs 2,500 upwards. At MG Road. Details: 25585858

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    Made to suit
    If you have a special day ahead that calls for a paired style statement, book an appointment with Michelle Salins. She creates tastefully matched his and hers outfits — think pastel linen shirts and sheaths, brocade sherwanis and lehengas or sleek cocktail dresses and tuxedos. She promises to keep the matching elements subtle so don’t worry about appearing cheesy. Rs 18,000 upwards for a couple. Details: michelle @michellesalins.com

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    Heart for art
    Don’t worry if you can’t make it to The Louvre. Head over to Kynkyny Art for an exploration of postmodern love in an evocative take on contemporary relationships. The New Romantics exhibition features an unprecedented line-up of artists including Asit Kumar Sarkar, Bakula Nayak, Praveen Kumar and Subrata Das for moods and expressions ranging from fleeting and ephemeral to dark and heart-breaking. At Infantry Road. Details: 40926206

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    Above board
    Create your own version of Monopoly, customised to suit your unique love story. We suggest you go all out with this game, and even rekindle that honeymoon phase with dares that let you relive those early relationship memories. Add some mood lighting and
    a bottle of wine for an intimate, affordable and fun evening. Rs 2,950. Details: thedottedi.com

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    On-air date
    Radio Indigo’s Michelle is on a mission to find her best friend and co-RJ, Shagufta, a date for tonight. And the lucky lad could be you. All in jest and for the fun of flirting, you can send in selfies, profiles and other nuggets of information that will win the approval of Michelle, as she is going to pick ‘the one’. Tune in to the morning show that begins at 7 to find out how you can be the catch of Shagufta’s day.

    Step up
    Burn some leather on the dance floor with your partner, as you follow city-based dancer-instructor Richard Tholoor’s footsteps. Brush up on your moves and choose your favourite style from merengue, Bollywood, salsa, bachata, hip-hop and old-fashioned quick step. The dance session is free for all couples. 7 pm. At Stepperz Studio, Sadashivnagar. Details: 9449816581

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    Turn up the heat
    For some shared activity, a baking session with pastry chef Saurabh Shah may be just the thing. Have fun with delicious chocolate, strawberries and whipped cream and learn to turn out some wonderful desserts as well. Limited to two couples only. Rs 1750++ per head. 11.30 am. At Whitefield Baking Company, Bengaluru Marriott Whitefield. Details: 4943500

    Candlelight tryst
    Whip up a gourmet something for your Valentine with some help from Hashi Kushalappa. She home delivers ready-to-cook ingredients, chopped, sliced and even marinated with simple instructions on putting it together. So light the candles, turn on the music and dine at home in style. Details: 9880709498

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    Get crafty
    Have a fun and artistic Valentine’s day at the Bosch DIY Square. Make your own piece of art, engrave glass or wood with messages or put together some cute knick knacks with the help of in-house experts. Until February 16. At Adugodi. Details: 22109036

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    Pure essence
    Gauri Spratt of Spratt Salon helps you put together body products customised to your partner’s tastes and skin type. Her hampers carry soaps, lotions, creams, body scrubs, oils and lip balms. Handmade from apricot, jojoba, olive and coconut oils infused with poppy seeds, walnut shells, tea leaves and dried flowers, Spratt’s products can also be bought off the shelves. Rs 1,500 upwards. Details: 9986666528

    Rashmi Rajagopal

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