Best date ideas for a special Valentine’s Day in Lake Tahoe |

Best date ideas for a special Valentine’s Day in Lake Tahoe

Autumn Whitney
The M.S. Dixie II breaks through the ice in Emerald Bay in January. The paddle wheeler hosts a Valentine's Day dinner cruise on Tuesday.
Courtesy / SnowBrains via Facebook |

Whether you’re visiting from out of town or are a long-time local, chances are you’ll agree that Lake Tahoe is a beautiful place to spend Valentine’s Day. Even something as simple as watching the sun set over the water can be one of the most romantic ways to spend the holiday. In case you haven’t made plans yet (I’m looking at you, ski bums), we’ve compiled a variety of date ideas that are sure to fulfill your Valentine’s Day.

Cruise on the M.S. Dixie II

Located in Zephyr Cove, the paddle wheeler hosts a unique, three-hour Valentine’s Dinner Cruise that begins at 5:30 p.m. Enjoy breathtaking views of Lake Tahoe as you dine on a menu that features scallops, potato-crusted sea bass, pepper-seared beef medallions and much more. The four-course meal and cruise is available for $105 per adult — to reserve a space, call 800-238-2463 or visit

Want to spend the evening in Zephyr Cove, but have a tighter budget? The resort’s restaurant serves a special Valentine’s Day menu that includes lobster lasagna, seared Alaskan halibut and white asparagus bisque before concluding with a flourless chocolate torte. The prix fixe meal costs $85 per couple. Call 775-589-4968 to make a reservation.

The Loft

One of South Shore’s go-to places for top-notch entertainment, The Loft (a live theatre complete with a lounge and dining area) hosts a three-course dinner complete with a bottle of champagne to celebrate the holiday. Dinner begins at 5 p.m. and is priced at $99 per couple.

Enjoy pre- or post-dinner entertainment with The Loft’s Magic Fusion show, which stars world-class magicians from across the globe and begins at 7:30 p.m. Tickets for the performance and dinner are available online at


The home of Lake Tahoe’s intimate fine dining since 1977, the restaurant features an award winning wine list and daily California cuisine specials. The diverse menu includes appetizers such as fresh ahi tuna, stuffed mushrooms, escargot, avocado hummus, entrees like skilled-roasted shrimp, Hawaiian style crab cakes, lamb and pasta. Nepheles also has a full-service bar.

It gets better — the establishment has on-site private hot tubs that are perfect for relaxing after a long day on the mountain. Call 530-544-8130 or visit for more information.

Couples Massages

Few things beat unwinding with your significant other. Elements Day Spa offers three couples massages, ranging from exfoliating body scrubs and body wraps to massages that include champagne and chocolate. Depending on the package you choose and length of the massage, prices vary from $170 to $420 per couple. Learn more at

BioSpirit Day Spa offers 50-minute anti-stress and deep tissue massages that are $160 and $180 per couple, respectively. Get rid of chronic tension and release strain in a relaxing atmosphere — schedule an appointment at

Whether you want a deep tissue, hot stone, peak recovery or Swedish massage, chances are The Landing Resort and Spa has it. The approximate one-hour massages vary in price based on chosen treatment. Checkout the options online at

Looking for more? Reflections The Spa at Harrah’s Lake Tahoe, Onsen Spa at MontBleu Resort Casino & Spa, Mountain Aloha and One World Healing Massage also have special couples massages.


South Shore has a wide variety of options when it comes to food. Friday’s Station, located at the top of Harrah’s Lake Tahoe, is an upscale steak and seafood restaurant that offers great views of the lake. Also in Stateline is Hard Rock Hotel and Casino’s Park Prime, a modern steakhouse that features a bar, live music and top-notch dishes.

New to South Shore is The Lake House — boasting appetizers like charcuterie and escargot, and entrees such as seafood, steak and duck, it’s a great place to go if you’re looking to try new food.

Fans of Italian dining should checkout Scusa, which has everything from linguine and clams to lasagna, eggplant parmesan, scampi, and — of course — spaghetti. The restaurant also features an extensive wine list.


Looking for something low-key and just want to grab drinks with your significant other? Check out Kalani’s, located in Heavenly Village — the spot won the Big Blue Cocktail Contest in November, and isn’t a bad place to grab pacific rim cuisine either.

Also in Heavenly Village is Gunbarrel Tavern, a woodsy location great for grabbing a beer after a day on the slopes. Hard Rock Hotel and Casino’s Center Bar and The Beach Retreat & Lodge’s Tavern are both classy, yet laid-back, places with lengthy drink menus.

On the opposite side of South Lake Tahoe is The Cantina Bar & Grill — a casual spot with an extensive bar that also serves up Mexican food.

However you choose to celebrate, Tahoe is the place to be this Valentine’s Day.

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