Sometimes all you need is a night on the town, to gaze into your lover’s eyes and remember that you are good looking, clever people with lots of things to talk about that don’t involve poop or boogers. If you need a reason to call up the sitter and get out, Portland has a million that won’t disappoint! We’ve rounded up 12 of our favorite Date suggestions below—and they are worth getting a sitter for. Read on to find out more!
photo: heather via yelp
Drinks on the Town
Spanish Coffee at Huber’s
Stop by the elegant Huber’s and order their famous drink, Spanish Coffee, claimed to have been invented there. In reality the drink was probably “borrowed” from other bars, but Huber’s did perfect the spectacle of it, complete with pyrotechnics and flair. Rum and triple sec is expertly ignited in a sugar-rimmed glass, then covered in Kahlua, coffee, and topped with fresh whipped cream. Cheers!
411 SW 3rd Ave.
This small space on the east side is decorated with hand-painted wallpaper and a central car bristling with options. You won’t find a menu, but that’s part of the fun. Instead, the expert bartenders will craft something by request, evoking your preferences of “floral,” “woodsy,” “smokey,” or something more specific. Classic cocktails like martinis and old-fashioneds are on the nose, as well, if you’re feeling less adventurous.
14 NE 28th Ave.
Pepe le Moko
It’s a speakeasy that’s worth finding, a subterranean hideout dishing oysters, gourmet snacks, and expert cocktails. With 36 seats, it’s an intimate night offering a menu of drinks straight from the 80’s, like Daiquiris, Long Island Ice Teas, and Blue Hawaiis. Don’t judge, these are beautifully balanced booze-affairs that will make a believer out of you.
407 SW 10th Ave.
photo: pul via yelp
Dinner and a Show
Head to Hollywood Theater for a change of pace from the regular movie routine. Not only do they show the usual new releases, they have a rotating selection of Signature Film Series that add up tp serious fun, like Kung Fu Theater or Queer Horror. Join in on the fun with their B- Movie Bingo (just what it sounds like) or test your knowledge with their monthly Movie Quiz. With local beer flowing, pizza, and the usual concessions, it’s a movie date night to remember!
4122 NE Sandy Blvd
Mix up the dinner and a movie routine by adding an hour in Kennedy School’s soaking pool. A classic McMenamin’s establishment, the campus is a historic elementary school-turned-hotel. The beautiful and private outdoor soaking pool is an oasis of warmth for a busy week. Bring your drink from any of the small bars around the school—just ask for a plastic cup when you order! An overnight stay isn’t necessary to partake (though it could add up at an even better date night!). After your soak, enjoy a movie in their newly renovated theater.
Soaking is $5/hour/per person, bring your own towel
Soaking pool is open until 8 p.m. for general public, 11 p.m. for overnight guests
5736 NE 33rd Ave
Doug Fir Lounge
This world-renowned music venue offers top notch shows in a futuristic log cabin vibe. Join them in celebrating 13 years of great music by making a whole night of it–dinner, drinks, a show, and maybe even an overnight stay at Jupiter Hotel next door. The food is local, comfy, served in a dining room with an echo of Twin Peaks. And the music downstairs offers a show almost every night of the week, an eclectic mix of tunes sure to please.
830 E Burnside St
Dinner and a Show at the Schintz
Go classy with a show at Portland’s renowned theater. Start out the night down the street at Higgins, offering classic Pacific Northwest local and sustainable fare, expertly paired with beer and wine. Then head to your seats at the Schnitzer for a show. Upcoming options include symphonies like Pirates of the Caribbean or Stravinsky, and comedians like Lewis Black or Adam Sandler.
1239 SW Broadway
Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall
1037 SW Broadway
photo: stumptown dance via yelp
OMSI After Dark
It’s Night at the Museum for the 21 and over crowd, filled with drinks, water rockets, experiments, and fun! This monthly event offers a themed night out at Portland’s favorite science museum, open late from 6-10 p.m. Food vendors, drinks, science demonstrations, and even performances all center around a theme like Houdini, Prom, Robots, or even the Science of Beer. It’s a popular event, so grab tickets online before you go!
1945 SE Water Ave
Ground Kontrol Arcade
Go back to your childhood with Ground Kontrol’s classic arcade games! Leave the kids at home and head to this downtown hot spot, which becomes a kid-free, bar-open zone at 5pm each night. For a quarter per play, you can try your hand at over 60 arcade games and 27 pinball machines. Add a live DJ and a full-service bar and it’s a date night chock full of fun. They also have regular events like comedy shows, trivia nights and game tournaments.
115 NW 5th Ave.
Get Your Dance On
Oregon’s largest weekly swing dance is a rolicking good time! Beginners are more than welcome to this social dance, which pulls partners together in a happy jazzy beat. Come early for the weekly beginner lessons, then dance your socks off the rest of the night. Many people return for more lessons: it’s a fun, affordable way to learn and try out your moves. And when you master the beginning steps, you can move on to the rotating Intermediate lessons, teaching tricky turns and special moves from the Charleston!
Norse Hall 111 NE 11th
What’s your favorite night out? Tell us in the comments below!