Lisa Dickenson

How to Recreate the Twelve Dates

This post was first published in December 2014

This year The Nutcracker is back on at The Royal Opera House in Covent Garden, and there’s still time to sparkle up someone’s evening and bag some tickets to this fantastic show.

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Need an easy, inexpensive date with a difference?  Surprise someone with a sweet visit to a Starbucks and treat them to their favourite festive hot drink.  It’ll warm their hearts.

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If you’re in London, it’s so worth spending an evening strolling through Covent Garden with a mulled wine and someone lovely, checking out their Christmas lights and decorations.

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Claudia may have had a, um, sickeningly bad date there, but there’s no reason you can’t have the festive time of your life at London Hyde Park’s Winter Wonderland.   There’s food, drink, skating, rides, a ferris wheel…

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If bright lights and Christmas crowds isn’t your thing, have a gentler stroll by the Thames on the South Bank, where pretty Christmas markets are intermixed with traditional old pubs, which are perfect for cosying up in.

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Alright, promise me something.  I’m down in Devon, but if it starts snowing in London this Christmas, please go up The Shard and send me a photo of the view?  The Shard makes a great date regardless, but looking out over a real winter wonderland would be priceless.  Just remember to bring warm clothes, scarves, gloves, hats and someone’s warm arms.

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The following is my favourite date, and my favourite chapter, of The Twelve Dates of Christmas.  I’ve visited a few London ice rinks, and Somerset House is indeed lovely, with its whopping, fat Fortnum & Mason tree, but the rink at the Natural History Museum has the best backdrop, in my mind.  So click here for details on how to recreate Claudia and Nick’s first(ish) date…

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Having a good singalong, or lipsync-along, to some Christmas Carols is a great way to embrace the Christmas spirit, and makes a lovely, romantic date.  And the amazing setting of St Paul’s Cathedral can make the whole thing extra special and skin-tingling.  There’s a Christmas Carol service on the evening of Tuesday 23rd December, right in time…

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Sometimes, the best dates are the simple ones, like sharing (ha! Sharing, as if) a Candy Cane Cupcake at the Hummingbird Bakery.  These are dotted all over the place in London, but the one Claudia and Penny visit is in South Kensington.  Mmmmmmmmm…

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