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it’s twilight on the Motor City Wine patio and three tiki torches near the ivy-covered fence cast a light over the picnic tables and round patio tables filled with customers drinking wine and talking.
The patio at MotorCity Wine in Corktown.
Gerard + Belevender

18 Memorable Date Night Destinations in Metro Detroit

Ideal spots for romantic occasions and first dates

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The patio at MotorCity Wine in Corktown.
| Gerard + Belevender

A great date doesn’t need to be a candlelit dinner...but it could. Whether it’s a first date, first time out without the kids in six months, or trying a new-to-you place for Sweetest Day with your significant other, Detroit has the right spot.

This map includes both romantic restaurants and places with activities. Interested in just you and your date chatting it up at a secluded, kind of dark table? Maybe you need games or trivia to get the conversation going. These restaurants, bars, and eateries offer up so many ways to make it a night to remember.

Health experts consider dining out to be a high-risk activity for the unvaccinated; the latest data about the delta variant indicates that it may pose a low-to-moderate risk for the vaccinated, especially in areas with substantial transmission. The latest CDC guidance is here; find a COVID-19 vaccination site here.

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

1. Highlands

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400 Renaissance Center floor 71
Detroit, MI 48243
(313) 877-9090
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Gaze at the Detroit (and Windsor!) skyline from the 71st floor of the Ren Cen. Appropriate for a special occasion or a classy night out, Highlands opened last fall with a steakhouse, bar, and event space. Need a conversation starter? A memorable scene with George Clooney and Jennifer Lopez in Out of Sight takes place in this location.

2. Vicente’s Cuban Cuisine

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1250 Library St
Detroit, MI 48226
(313) 962-8800
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Share some tapas with your significant other or go for the paella at this popular downtown standby. Salsa dancing is on hold during the pandemic but traditionally is held on Friday and Saturday nights.

3. The Siren Hotel

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1509 Broadway St
Detroit, MI 48226
(313) 277-4736
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The Siren Hotel has numerous ways to impress that special someone. Start at Candy Bar for the vintage decor and a nostalgic cocktail. Head upstairs and split a plate of spaghetti and meatballs at Karl’s. Hang out with a glass of wine. Then, if you’re ready to show off your talents, take your brave companion to Sid Gold’s Request Room and serenade them during piano karaoke.

4. Cliff Bell's

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2030 Park Ave
Detroit, MI 48226
(313) 961-2543
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This restored Detroit jazz club is a must-stop for couples in the Motor City. Dating back to 1935, Cliff Bell’s has nightly entertainment and Art Deco decor. Cozy on up in a booth, pick a dish from the classic surf and turf menu, and sip on a Sazerac or the Last Word.

5. Mink

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1701 Trumbull Ave
Detroit, MI 48216
(313) 379-6465
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This dainty restaurant and bar in Corktown serves some of the freshest oysters in the city. The intimate atmosphere paired with good wine and shareable dishes is ideal for splitting with a date. While seafood is the star here, dry-aged beef tartare, meat and cheese plates, and thoughtful vegetable dishes make it easy for everyone to find something to enjoy.

6. Motor City Wine

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1949 Michigan Ave
Detroit, MI 48216
(313) 483-7283
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Conversation or dancing could be on the menu depending on when you stop by Motor City Wine. Share a bottle of Detroit Love with your love, sit back, and listen to the night’s live band. If it’s warm out, Motor City Wine has one of the best patios in the city. You and your date can share a charcuterie board or snack on bites from the guest chef.

7. Two James Spirits

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2445 Michigan Ave
Detroit, MI 48216
(313) 964-4800
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This Corktown cocktail bar and distillery is a favorite for dates. It’s quiet, but not too quiet. Nice, but not too fancy. And the drinks are consistently good. Order a classic Manhattan while your date tries a seasonal selection. Need a bite to eat? Two James regularly hosts pop-ups and is surrounded by excellent restaurants including scene-y Northern Thai favorite Takoi and Cork and Gabel.

8. El Barzon

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3710 Junction Ave
Detroit, MI 48210
(313) 894-2070
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This romantic, white tablecloth establishment in Southwest Detroit specializes in impeccable Mexican and Italian cuisine complemented by a robust wine list. The ambiance here makes it a popular spot for celebrations and its patio is one of the loveliest in the city.

People sit outside at patio tables with white tablecloths surrounded by brick and plants. Bill Addison/Eater

9. For the Love of Sugar

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100 Erskine St
Detroit, MI 48201
(313) 788-7111
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A decadent date includes a stop at Brush Park’s For the Love of Sugar. Sip a cup of coffee or tea while splitting a slice of their rich, chocolatey Matilda cake or the famous macarons. Make sure to take a moment to appreciate the delightfully decorated cakes in the window.

10. Hammer & Nail

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3800 Woodward Ave
Detroit, MI 48201
(313) 474-3477
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Live out a Mad Men fantasy at this mid-century-inspired cocktail lounge in Midtown. Located in the Hammer & Nail Building, the lounge has a chill vibe, a colorful selection of cocktails, and classic bites like deviled eggs and shrimp cocktail to share.

11. Barcade

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666 Selden St
Detroit, MI 48201
(313) 285-9410
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For casual nights out, it’s hard to go wrong with games. Treat your date to a shared plate (wings, fries, nachos) and dial up the nostalgia with Ms. Pac Man, pinball, and Centipede. Barcade also has an extensive beer menu.

12. Taystee's Burgers

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10419 Ford Rd
Dearborn, MI 48126
(313) 724-6535
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Taystee’s Burgers may seem a bit out of left field given that its a burger restaurant...in a gas station. But it actually makes a great casual date spot. Drop in and pick-up a burger and fries or maybe a hot dog (everything here is messily delicious and halal), and head across the street to a double feature at the Ford-Wyoming Drive-in.

A cheeseburger with beef bacon sits on half a bun and a piece of red and white checkered paper. Eater

13. Kresge Court

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5200 Woodward Ave
Detroit, MI 48202
(313) 833-7900
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Every new couple in Detroit has to wander through the DIA at some point. Meet at Kresge Court and chat over a glass of wine or bottle of beer, then take some time strolling through the exhibits. If it goes well, have dinner across the street at Chartreuse.

14. Raven Lounge & Restaurant

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5145 Chene
Detroit, MI 48211
(313) 924-7133

Dine and dance at Detroit’s oldest blues bar, which has live performances Thursday through Saturday. Those who aren’t dancing on their feet are usually sitting to enjoy the piping-hot fried fish (perch, salmon, catfish, shrimp) with hot-water cornbread, and cheesy mac and cheese.

15. The Film Lab

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3105 Holbrook Ave
Hamtramck, MI 48212

Call up a significant other for drinks and a movie you’re not likely to find anywhere else. The Film Lab has a laid back atmosphere, a full bar with themed drinks, offbeat and indie movies (of course), plus trivia and karaoke.

16. La Dolce Vita

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17546 Woodward Ave
Detroit, MI 48203
(313) 865-0331
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Whether heading out for Sunday brunch or a special evening, “Detroit’s best-kept secret,” just across from Palmer Park, has a romantic setting indoors and a welcoming patio during the warmer months. The menu features Italian classics plenty of desserts. Be sure to mind the dress code.

17. Detroit Axe

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344 W Nine Mile Rd
Ferndale, MI 48220
(248) 291-5650
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If you’re going out with another couple or two, a group date at Detroit Axe will test your skills. Take aim at the target, choose some board games to play after, and snack on bar food like mac and cheese and sliders. A new location comes to Detroit’s Corktown in mid-October 2021.

18. Bowlero Lanes & Lounge

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4209 Coolidge Hwy
Royal Oak, MI 48073
(248) 549-7500
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It’s good to have some activity on a night out beyond the dinner and drinks. Why not bond over your strike skills (or lack thereof) at Bowlero Lanes & Lounge? The retro bowling alley has mid-century decor, some nods to The Big Lebowski, DJs, and a swanky cocktail lounge.

1. Highlands

400 Renaissance Center floor 71, Detroit, MI 48243

Gaze at the Detroit (and Windsor!) skyline from the 71st floor of the Ren Cen. Appropriate for a special occasion or a classy night out, Highlands opened last fall with a steakhouse, bar, and event space. Need a conversation starter? A memorable scene with George Clooney and Jennifer Lopez in Out of Sight takes place in this location.

400 Renaissance Center floor 71
Detroit, MI 48243

2. Vicente’s Cuban Cuisine

1250 Library St, Detroit, MI 48226

Share some tapas with your significant other or go for the paella at this popular downtown standby. Salsa dancing is on hold during the pandemic but traditionally is held on Friday and Saturday nights.

1250 Library St
Detroit, MI 48226

3. The Siren Hotel

1509 Broadway St, Detroit, MI 48226

The Siren Hotel has numerous ways to impress that special someone. Start at Candy Bar for the vintage decor and a nostalgic cocktail. Head upstairs and split a plate of spaghetti and meatballs at Karl’s. Hang out with a glass of wine. Then, if you’re ready to show off your talents, take your brave companion to Sid Gold’s Request Room and serenade them during piano karaoke.

1509 Broadway St
Detroit, MI 48226

4. Cliff Bell's

2030 Park Ave, Detroit, MI 48226

This restored Detroit jazz club is a must-stop for couples in the Motor City. Dating back to 1935, Cliff Bell’s has nightly entertainment and Art Deco decor. Cozy on up in a booth, pick a dish from the classic surf and turf menu, and sip on a Sazerac or the Last Word.

2030 Park Ave
Detroit, MI 48226

5. Mink

1701 Trumbull Ave, Detroit, MI 48216

This dainty restaurant and bar in Corktown serves some of the freshest oysters in the city. The intimate atmosphere paired with good wine and shareable dishes is ideal for splitting with a date. While seafood is the star here, dry-aged beef tartare, meat and cheese plates, and thoughtful vegetable dishes make it easy for everyone to find something to enjoy.

1701 Trumbull Ave
Detroit, MI 48216

6. Motor City Wine

1949 Michigan Ave, Detroit, MI 48216

Conversation or dancing could be on the menu depending on when you stop by Motor City Wine. Share a bottle of Detroit Love with your love, sit back, and listen to the night’s live band. If it’s warm out, Motor City Wine has one of the best patios in the city. You and your date can share a charcuterie board or snack on bites from the guest chef.

1949 Michigan Ave
Detroit, MI 48216

7. Two James Spirits

2445 Michigan Ave, Detroit, MI 48216

This Corktown cocktail bar and distillery is a favorite for dates. It’s quiet, but not too quiet. Nice, but not too fancy. And the drinks are consistently good. Order a classic Manhattan while your date tries a seasonal selection. Need a bite to eat? Two James regularly hosts pop-ups and is surrounded by excellent restaurants including scene-y Northern Thai favorite Takoi and Cork and Gabel.

2445 Michigan Ave
Detroit, MI 48216

8. El Barzon

3710 Junction Ave, Detroit, MI 48210
People sit outside at patio tables with white tablecloths surrounded by brick and plants. Bill Addison/Eater

This romantic, white tablecloth establishment in Southwest Detroit specializes in impeccable Mexican and Italian cuisine complemented by a robust wine list. The ambiance here makes it a popular spot for celebrations and its patio is one of the loveliest in the city.

3710 Junction Ave
Detroit, MI 48210

9. For the Love of Sugar

100 Erskine St, Detroit, MI 48201

A decadent date includes a stop at Brush Park’s For the Love of Sugar. Sip a cup of coffee or tea while splitting a slice of their rich, chocolatey Matilda cake or the famous macarons. Make sure to take a moment to appreciate the delightfully decorated cakes in the window.

100 Erskine St
Detroit, MI 48201

10. Hammer & Nail

3800 Woodward Ave, Detroit, MI 48201

Live out a Mad Men fantasy at this mid-century-inspired cocktail lounge in Midtown. Located in the Hammer & Nail Building, the lounge has a chill vibe, a colorful selection of cocktails, and classic bites like deviled eggs and shrimp cocktail to share.

3800 Woodward Ave
Detroit, MI 48201

11. Barcade

666 Selden St, Detroit, MI 48201

For casual nights out, it’s hard to go wrong with games. Treat your date to a shared plate (wings, fries, nachos) and dial up the nostalgia with Ms. Pac Man, pinball, and Centipede. Barcade also has an extensive beer menu.

666 Selden St
Detroit, MI 48201

12. Taystee's Burgers

10419 Ford Rd, Dearborn, MI 48126
A cheeseburger with beef bacon sits on half a bun and a piece of red and white checkered paper. Eater

Taystee’s Burgers may seem a bit out of left field given that its a burger restaurant...in a gas station. But it actually makes a great casual date spot. Drop in and pick-up a burger and fries or maybe a hot dog (everything here is messily delicious and halal), and head across the street to a double feature at the Ford-Wyoming Drive-in.

10419 Ford Rd
Dearborn, MI 48126

13. Kresge Court

5200 Woodward Ave, Detroit, MI 48202

Every new couple in Detroit has to wander through the DIA at some point. Meet at Kresge Court and chat over a glass of wine or bottle of beer, then take some time strolling through the exhibits. If it goes well, have dinner across the street at Chartreuse.

5200 Woodward Ave
Detroit, MI 48202

14. Raven Lounge & Restaurant

5145 Chene, Detroit, MI 48211

Dine and dance at Detroit’s oldest blues bar, which has live performances Thursday through Saturday. Those who aren’t dancing on their feet are usually sitting to enjoy the piping-hot fried fish (perch, salmon, catfish, shrimp) with hot-water cornbread, and cheesy mac and cheese.

5145 Chene
Detroit, MI 48211

15. The Film Lab

3105 Holbrook Ave, Hamtramck, MI 48212

Call up a significant other for drinks and a movie you’re not likely to find anywhere else. The Film Lab has a laid back atmosphere, a full bar with themed drinks, offbeat and indie movies (of course), plus trivia and karaoke.

3105 Holbrook Ave
Hamtramck, MI 48212

Related Maps

16. La Dolce Vita

17546 Woodward Ave, Detroit, MI 48203

Whether heading out for Sunday brunch or a special evening, “Detroit’s best-kept secret,” just across from Palmer Park, has a romantic setting indoors and a welcoming patio during the warmer months. The menu features Italian classics plenty of desserts. Be sure to mind the dress code.

17546 Woodward Ave
Detroit, MI 48203

17. Detroit Axe

344 W Nine Mile Rd, Ferndale, MI 48220

If you’re going out with another couple or two, a group date at Detroit Axe will test your skills. Take aim at the target, choose some board games to play after, and snack on bar food like mac and cheese and sliders. A new location comes to Detroit’s Corktown in mid-October 2021.

344 W Nine Mile Rd
Ferndale, MI 48220

18. Bowlero Lanes & Lounge

4209 Coolidge Hwy, Royal Oak, MI 48073

It’s good to have some activity on a night out beyond the dinner and drinks. Why not bond over your strike skills (or lack thereof) at Bowlero Lanes & Lounge? The retro bowling alley has mid-century decor, some nods to The Big Lebowski, DJs, and a swanky cocktail lounge.

4209 Coolidge Hwy
Royal Oak, MI 48073

Related Maps