Canberra Centre Masthead

Your ultimate Valentine’s Day 2018 round up

Alexa Sommerville and Elsie Adamo

The most romantic day of the year is almost upon us, but don’t be caught out buying supermarket flowers at the last minute (again).

Whether you’ve been married thirty years or you’re not putting a label on it yet, we’ve got your ultimate guide to everything happening in Canberra next Wednesday.



With an indulgent French menu, Buvette will be catering for couples with three courses of decadent food. Highlights include butter poached prawns, roaster snapper with poached oysters and housemade petit fours. For an added layer of indulgence, you can book a room at the Hotel Realm so you don’t even need to relocate from the building after dinner. The perfect excuse to have some extra champagne.

Buvette Restaurant | Three-course dinner $90pp | 6163 1888 |


The ultimate in fine dining experiences, The Boat House is offering a six-course degustation Valentine’s Day menu for $150 per person or $410 for the Romance Package, which includes two adult tickets, a bottle of G.H. Mumm and a guaranteed window table. With views of Lake Burley Griffin over the menu designed by chef John Leverink, you’d be in the good books for the rest of 2018.

The Boat House | 7pm for 7.30 start | $150pp (menu only) or $410 (Romance Package for two) | 6273 5500 |


For the lover who loves perfectly paired wine and food, Waters Edge boasts spectacular views of Lake Burley Griffin along Queen Elizabeth Terrace all the way across to Anzac Parade. If the three-course lunch menu or four-course dinner menu doesn’t sell it to you, their extended and carefully curated wine list designed to complement the food should surely do it.

Waters Edge Restaurant | Three-course lunch $66pp Four-course dinner menu $77pp | 6273 5066 |


Perched on top of Red Hill Lookout, 175 metres above Canberra, Onred has some of the best views in Canberra. Their four-course lunch and dinner menus start with an amuse bouche, so earn so brownie points with the foodie in your life at this fine dining destination.

Onred Restaurant | Four-course menu $79pp Three-course menu $65pp | 6273 3517 |


Celebrate Valentine’s under the stars at Chifley’s Bar and Grill. You’ll be seated in their outdoor area so you can to gaze into your partner’s eyes while the sun sets – with excellent food of course.

The three-course dinner menu also includes a three-hour drink package. Live music will be provided by Tom Harrigan.

Chifley’s Bar & Grill | Three-course dinner menu with drinks package $125pp | 6234 4444 |


This year, QT Hotel has created the ultimate declaration of love with the launch of Australia’s most expensive dessert. 

From 12-18 February, Capital Bar and Grill will give diners the option to order ‘Room for Dessert’ directly from the menu. 

Once ordered, guests will be presented with a beautiful sweet treat with a twist, a room key, and are automatically checked in for the night, complete with a half bottle of Mumm NV Champagne waiting on ice. 

QT Canberra + Capital Bar and Grill | $498 including dessert, a room at QT Canberra and a half bottle of Mumm NV Champagne | see for more information


If you feel like going a bit French and fancy, Les Bistronomes has the special menu for you. Offering omnivore and herbivore options, it’s the perfect vegetarian date, and couples are allowed to order different options.

Les Bistronomes Restaurant | Four-course dinner $100pp | 6248 8119 |


For a romantic countryside setting (right in town), Pialligo Estate’s Garden Pavillions are easily one of Canberra’s best options. For Valentines Day they will be offering a special menu across two sittings at either 6 or 8 pm. Treat your special person to a five-course sharing menu with a glass of Sparkling Rose or hand-crafted beer to set the mood.

The Pialligo Estate | Five-course dinner sharing menu $110pp | 6247 6060 |


For the meat loving couples among us, Marble & Grain will be making your Wednesday with their Valentine’s Day menu. You can book in for a three-course dinner menu which of course comes with a glass of sparkling on arrival. Dinner bookings will be taken from 6pm onwards.

Marble & Grain Restaurant | Three-course dinner menu $99pp | 6246 9555 |


Treat your significant other to a 5-course, Asian fusion banquet at Natural Nine this Valentine’s Day. The banquet includes scallop and prawn dumplings, xo moreton bay bug glass noodles and more, along with paired wines

The Valentine’s Day Banquet will be available for both lunch and dinner.

Bookings essential. 18 + venue

Lunch 12 pm – 2:30 pm and Dinner 5:30 pm – 10 pm | $89 | View the menu here | Call 0455 333 119 to book a table


A Valentine’s Day inspired high tea on the Burbury rooftop terrace will be the perfect way to spend the weekend in each other’s company.

Each guest receives a glass of Prosecco on arrival and will go in the draw to win a couple’s signature massage at Hale Spa valued at $240.

  • $50 traditional high tea
  • $60 high tea with a glass of Piper-Heidsieck Champagne
  • $105 high tea with free-flowing Piper-Heidsieck Champagne

To book, email: [email protected].

Burbury Rooftop Terrace High Tea | Saturday 17 February, seatings at 12 pm, 2:30 pm or dusk 5:30 pm 

NOTABLE MENTIONS: The Conservatory Restaurant at the National Arboretum (for more stunning views), Courgette, Aubergine, Ottoman (for award-winning Turkish food) and the Hyatt Hotel (for champagne breakfast, tea and cake, of course).

Outside Canberra, Le Très Bon in Bungendore, Clementine in Yass and Grazing at Gundaroo are all worth the drive.




For the ultimate movie experience, the American Express Openair Cinemas will be on the Patrick White Lawns on Lake Burley Griffin between Thursday 11 January and Sunday 25 February.

On Valentine’s Day, enjoy everyone’s on-screen crush Ryan Gosling romancing Emma Stone in the Oscar-winning La La Land. Upgrade to the Star Lounge for a real treat.

American Express Openair Cinemas | Gates open 6 pm | General admission $30, Concession $27, Star Lounge $50 |


Grab a picnic blanket and take yourself down to Tuggeranong Town Park to watch the opening night of Shakespeare By The Lake performing Much Ado About Nothing. Delicious food and drink will be on offer from Pop Inn Wine Bar, Canberra Bagel Van, ShotClock Expresso, Bombolini Douhgnuts and the Cannoli Brothers. Although the event is free, you still need to book your ticket and donations are accepted in lieu of an entrance fee.

Shakespeare By The Lake | Gates open 5.30pm for 6.30pm show | Free entry. Donations accepted |


Celebrate V-Day in your Y-fronts and take part in this charity fun run that raises money for neurofibromatosis.

Taking place on Sunday 18 February, the 1.5-kilometre fun begins at the Southern Cross Club and runs through Lennox Gardens, so you can celebrate Valentine’s twice and for a good cause.

Cupid’s Undie Run | Registration 10 am Run starts 11 am | Free |


For a daytime movie option you can head on into Dendy in the city for a preview screening of Film Stars Don’t Die in Liverpool. The film is a biopic about ageing film star Gloria Grahame, who retreated to Liverpool in the 1970s (and into the arms of a younger ex-boyfriend) after she was diagnosed with breast cancer. This well-reviewed flick is sure to be a little bit sad, and a little bit romantic.

Morning tea will be offered before the screening.

Dendy Cinema| Film Star’s Don’t Die in Liverpool screening with morning tea, $21pp for adults, concession prices available |


Grab your partner or a group of friends and head to King O’Malley’s this Valentine’s Day for a one night only Oyster Pop-Up Master Class proudly brought to you by NSW Farmers’ Country Connection. This is your opportunity to sample some of the best NSW oysters, while getting up close and personal with the local people and farmers that make good food possible.

Learn to shuck oysters yourself, how to select the best oysters, shucking safety, taste profiles, serving techniques, and where to source the freshest oysters.

Your ticket includes a free drink on entry, light supper and oyster tasting.

From 7 – 9 pm | King O’Malley’s, City Walk, Civic | [email protected]


Image: Martin Ollman


If you’re after a unique meal for the most romantic day of the year, give Sri Lankan gem Banana Leaf a try. They’re offering a four-course Valentine’s Day menu for $90 per person, with vegetarian and vegan options available.

Banana Leaf | 5.30-9.30pm | $90pp |


A hot air balloon ride at dawn is the ultimate romantic experience. Dawn Drifters offer a Valentine’s Day package with champagne and chocolates for $290 per person, and breakfast at the Hyatt for an additional $40. Alternatively, Balloon Aloft offers flights with breakfast for $370 or without for $330.


An environmentally-friendly outdoor activity designed in Copenhagen (so you know it’s state-of-the-art and green) Go Boat will allow you to take the helm this V-Day as you captain your own electric boat. Take an hour’s lunchbreak and cruise around Lake Burley Griffin, or make it more leisurely with two or three hour trips after work.

GoBoat | $95 for 1 hour, $169 for 2 hours, $239 for 3 hours | 6100 7776 |


Ladies and gentlemen, Lady Larissa invites you and your crew to celebrate all the colours of love and take part in our LOVE IS LOVE Bouquet making Workshop.

In this workshop you will make your very own rambling and romantic garden bouquet. Think pretty pastel coloured English blooms with wild & free Australian natives. Purchase a ticket as a token of your love, treat yourself, or make your own beloveds floral gift for Valentine’s Day while enjoying a grazing platter and drinks from Canberra’s newest brewery, Capital Brewing Co.

Limited number of tickets available.


  • Bouquet demonstration

  • Tips & tricks of bouquet making

  • Flower care

  • All florals, tools & materials provided

  • One free beer or wine

  • Delicious seasonal grazing platter to share

  • Goodie bag from HOORAY Magazine

 Tuesday 13 February | Capital Brewing Co ,Building 3/1 Dairy Rd, Fyshwick | $160 per person + booking fee 


Want all the romance of a picnic for two with none of the preparation? Schmicnics is business for you. Their Duet Picnic Hamper comes fully stocked with a selection of snacks, breads, salads and sweets, sparkling water, disposable plates, cutlery – and even a picnic rug for you to keep. Add a bottle of Moet for $90 and toast to the easiest Valentine’s Day ever.

Schmicnics The Duet Hamper | $150 for two |


Alexa Sommerville

Canberra raised Alexa Sommerville has almost completed her Bachelor of Communication in Journalism degree. After five months on exchange in the UK, Alexa fell in love with solo travel and has mastered the art of daydreaming either about her next getaway or her next meal. She enjoys watching health documentaries, online shopping and old-school film photography, but not as much as she does annoying her mother by using every ingredient in the pantry to bake her latest healthy food obsession. Alexa hopes one day to be writing about traveling, or eating, or writing while she travels and eats. More about the Author


Elsie Adamo

Elsie originally hails from South Australia but after almost five years in the Capital likes to consider herself now as a local. A student at ANU she keeps herself busy on campus with student societies and now interning at HerCanberra. Her great loves include sitcoms, podcasts, bookstores, cider, brunch and online shopping. More about the Author