Looking to right swipe your way to find a bae? I give you Bumble. The classier dating app cousin to Tinder–where the women hold the power. Given my time on the app, I find that Bumble generally has less crazies and more steadily employed gentlemen. Cheers to that.
Anyways, no matter how you’re electronically trying to find love, you will eventually match with a potential bae. You’ll do the obligatory small talk thing, send some flirty emojis, and before you know it…BOOM! Someone extends the elusive invitation to meet up…Now what?
Assuming you want to meet up [and not hook up] the pressure is on to nail the first date, find an interesting venue to kill the first impression, let the pheromones fly and see if the chemistry is for real. As a follow up to 10 Places to Take Your Tinder Date in Houston, I give you (in no particular order) the top places to take a Bumble date in Houston.
Dates for those who like nature
1. Waugh Bat Colony. Houston has a bat colony with over 250,000 bats that live under the Waugh St. Bridge in Buffalo Bayou. Head over around dusk to watch them fly out for their nightly hunt. It’s pretty incredible to see thousands of them all skimming through the sky at once! While the bridge may be kinda smelly, the park is a pretty romantic setting for a walk at sunset. There are nicely paved trails, a dog park nearby, and incredible views of Downtown. (Waugh and Allen Parkway, 77019)
2. Kayaking. Nothing brings a couple closer than paddling through alligator infested bayou in a tandem kayak. Practice your teamwork, synchronize your strokes, and kanoodle in a kayak with your potential bae. Bayou City Adventures offer a bunch of kayaking tours on the weekend that last 2-4 hours. The tours are fun, laid back and give you the perfect excuse to use the alligator emoji. (Various locations)
Dates for those who are night owls
3. Midnight Movie. Match with someone whose best pick up line is a movie quote? Head to a Midnight Movie at River Oaks theatre to see a classic film like Breakfast Club or Chicago. The shows have lively crowds (especially if you see Rocky Horror Picture Show) and are perfect for a potential make out sesh . Plus if the date is going well, you can continue your 3 am heart-to-heart at the 24 hour Starbucks across the street. (2009 W Gray St, Houston, TX)
4. Marfreless. Known notoriously as the go-to make out bar in Houston, the cozy, low-lit atmosphere in River Oaks offers you the perfect space to skip the small talk and see if your match is really bae material. Just like the initial first impression on dating apps, it may look sketchy from the outside, but it’s really a classy and has some gems on the inside. (2006 Peden St. Houston, TX 77019)
Dates for those who work Downtown
5. Phonecia Downtown. Put some time on your calendar to go on a quick lunch date to this specialty foods store. It’s got a fabulous serve-yourself salad bar, gyro station, as well as bakery and deli full of delightful ethnic finds. You check out like at a grocery store, so it’s pretty easy to not to have your date pay for your food. You can sit inside at the MKT bar or if its nice out, you can walk across the street and enjoy the fresh air and people watch at Discovery Green. Even if the dates a dud, the lunch will be phenom and you’ll find yourself coming back again and again. (1001 Austin St., Houston, TX 77010)
6. City Hall Farmer’s Market. Break your Tunnel lunchtime routine, and get some fresh air at the Farmer’s Market downtown. Meet your date in front of the City Hall fountain and peruse the restaurant stands and food trucks together to find the perfect lunch. Walking around helps breaks the monotony of a typical seated date and gives you the opportunity to bond over your communal obscure love for peanut butter and jelly tacos or whatever. Arrive early (11am) so you can beat the lines. (901 Bagby St., Houston, TX 77002)
Dates for those who just moved to Houston
7. B Cycle. Talking to an engineer who works in the oil industry who works a wonky schedule (aka everyone) and doesn’t get to go out in Houston much? Sounds like the perfect opportunity to get to know the city and your date with a little sweat and adventure. Rent city bikes for as little as $5/hour and bike around Downtown, Buffalo Bayou, or Herrmann Park. Depending on where you end up and whether the day is going well, you can round out your date with a cheap bite at Torchy’s Tacos, Natchee’s Supper ‘n’ Punch, or Just Mac. (Multiple locations)
8. Velvet Taco. There is a reason they call it texmex. For anyone who has just moved to Texas or Houston (aka everyone in oil and gas), it’s basically a requirement to have a favorite taco spot. You can’t just celebrate Taco Tuesday just anywhere. A good place to start your quest for glory would be Velvet Taco on Washington. It’s got a fab selection of unique tacos, a local craft beer selection that would make all the hipsters approve, a fabulous outdoor patio, and is adjacent to a drive-thru margarita shop. In order words, heaven. If your date approves, you know they’re a keeper. (4819 Washington Ave. Houston TX 77007)
Dates for those who could use a drink
9. Brunch @ Empire Café. Hair of the dog can often be a good thing. Especially when its accompanied by good food, good conversation and the occasional puppy. Did you swipe right only because you wanted to meet the dog? Invite your date (and their pet) out for a brunch on Empire Cafe’s dog-friendly patio. Mimosas and food totals come in below $10–sure to be easy on the wallet and the date/dog will be easy on the eyes. (1732 Westheimer Rd. Houston, TX 77098)
10. 8th Wonder Brewery. Found someone who is a self-proclaimed beer snob? Invite them out after work to chill at the super laidback, Houston proud 8th Wonder Brewery. Whether or not you actually like to talk about IPAs and sessional ales, $10 gets you three beers, which is arguably one of the best happy hour deals in the city. And with names like “Rocket Fuel” and “Hopston” you know you won’t be disappointed by 8th Wonder’s starting lineup. Even better: Eatsie Boys food truck, one of the best in America, has been known to frequent the brewery as well. (2202 Dallas St., Houston, TX, 77003)
Whether your date is a dud or a delightful success, these places are sure to be fun and fabulous and give you some serious satisfaction in crossing them off your Houston bucket list. If you don’t end up with a second date—it’s probably for the best. Your date is probably a fun-sucking dud, who lied on Bumble to get with your hawt ass. But no worries! You’re just one more right swipe away to finding your true love….