When “Stuff” Isn’t Your Thing: Non-material Guide To Valentine’s Day Gift Giving

heart hearts valentine valentine's day gift guide

Forget the Gucci gifts and diamonds. You’re more real than that. You and your partner are a bit more sentimental when it comes to presents. Or maybe you just have no idea of what to get. Here are some more conceptual gift ideas to make your Valentine’s Day planning a lot easier.

Chef it Up

 Everyone appreciates a home cooked meal, especially if it is unexpected. So light the candles, put on the dinner music (queue Earned It by The Weekend) and get chopping. We also suggest the El Michels Affair Spotify playlist for background slow jams. Not the best cook? No problem – check out these 30 most romantic dinner recipes from The Spruce Eats for some guidance. And just in case you end up burning something, we highly recommend to dine at the Maccheroni Republic on South Broadway for organic and fresh handmade pasta. Maybe make a back up dinner reservation in case your pasta turns out a little too al dente.


Scrapbook Memories


We all know you have 3,000 photos of you and bae stored in your iCloud. Get creative and put those selfies to use in a fun scrapbook highlighting the best of times. Print the photos and head over to a Michaels or Blicks to pick up an album and craft supplies. Add decorations and heartfelt captions to your captured moments to really show that sensitive side to your boo.

Spa Day


Another perfect gift for the both you – a couples massage or relaxing day at a spa downtown. Treat yourselves like the stars such as Katy Perry, Jessica Alba and Ellen DeGeneres who go to Ole Henriksen Face Body Spa. Specialties include the famed African Red Tea Body Treatment, craniosacral massages, and a variety of organic facials. Looking for something more intense and a little weird? Love doesn’t have to bite but sometimes it’s a good thing. No, not a happy ending, but a deep tissue massage technique which includes “backbiting.” Dorothy Stein is a massage therapist who has been providing famous musicians, such as Kanye West, with these back rubs accompanied by biting one’s back since 1983. It’s something different, but if you can get in touch with Stein, it can be quite the alternative love bite this Valentine’s Day.


Spa Day

A Bunch of Favorites


Can’t decide on just one present? Well, there’s no better solution than a thoughtful and personalized gift basket. For him, include his favorite craft beer, snack, CD/vinyl or concert tickets (see below for suggestions) and perhaps his go-to Axe spray. For her, throw in her frequently craved chocolates (maybe some See’s Candies), a handmade card, the newest shade of OPI nail polish, and depending on your budget, some bling. And don’t forget the flowers!


Hip Hop in LA


If you two are fresh into the relationship and don’t know each other other that well yet, we can help with the music picks. Concert tickets are always a fabulous idea because you’re technically buying a present for yourself as well. We suggest going to see Lupe Fiasco at The Novo, playing just about a week after the holiday or throw it back to the sexy duo of Ja Rule and Ashanti actually playing the night of Valentine’s Day, also at The Novo! If you’re looking for more fun afterwards, head to the Hyde Lounge or 1 OAK nightclub for some excellent bottle service, just make sure to reserve a table as this night will be crowded with other LA lovers.

Weekend Getaway


Tell him or her to take a hike (in a nice way)! Head to Joshua Tree or the nearest national park in your area for some weekend camping. More of a beach bum? Drive down to San Diego and book a couple nights by the beach at the Pacific Terrace Hotel. If your partner is a sea lover, go sailing or hop on a ship for dolphin and whale watching with Hornblower Cruises (queue The Lonely Island’s I’m On a Boat). If you’re in a colder region (sorry) then rent a cabin in the snowy mountains, for example in Lake Tahoe, and get cozy by the fireplace with a bottle of wine. A surprise mini vacation will for sure meet the romantic expectations of your lover boy or girl.


Timeless Love


Maybe this Valentine’s Day means taking the next step, perhaps not at the diamond ring status, but if moving in together is in the picture, then how about something for your new love nest? Apartment shopping can be stressful, but also super exciting, especially if your partner is a true hip-hop fan, then you absolutely have to get this rad Wu Tang Clan vinyl record. Tell your partner that this present represents your timeless love, and of course his/her awesome taste in music.

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