Most popular things to do for Valentine's Day in New York

Romance Under the Stars

Eschew the dinner date on Valentine's Day and snap up tickets to this swanky soiree at the American Museum of Natural History's Rose Center for Earth and Space. The night begins among the asteroids (have a "heavenly bodies" quip ready) with an open bar of cocktails and champagne, passed hors d’oeuvres and chocolate, while a jazz quartet sets the mood with standards. An hour later, cozy up in the Hayden Planetarium while an astronomer tells lovey-dovey stories based on the mythology of the cosmos.

The Sweetheart Soiree

The Jazz Age Lawn Party’s Michael Arenella hosts this black-tie affair with cocktails, live music and even dance lessons in an 1847 townhouse that’s now an exclusive club.

Filthy Gorgeous Burlesque Valentine's Spectacular

Thirsty Girl Productions is back with another burlesque extravaganza, this one celebrating that most lovey-dovey of holidays, Valentine's Day. Even if you're single, you can't go wrong with this lineup, with Dirty Martini, Peekaboo Pointe, Rosie 151, Mr. Gorgeous, Cassandra Rosebeetle, Lil Miss Lixx, hula-hooper Pinkie Special, Francine "The Lucid Dream," and Aurora Black ("The Prima Ballerina of Burlesque") wowing the crowd. Broadway Brassy & the Brass Knuckles perform live, yet more hot-to-trot tunes come courtesy of DJ Momotaro, and the World Famous *BOB* serves as the night's Amazonian host.

La Vie Parisienne: Bal Masqué de la St-Valentin 2014

Shien Lee and her Dances of Vice coterie are back for another of their dressed-to-the-nines affairs, with tonight's Valentine's Day masquerade held in the opulent confines of the Down Town Association clubhouse. The night's performers include the Carte Blanche combo, neo-Baroque performance troupe Company XIV, the Painted Ladies Project, the Doll Eyes Collective, and Samantha Siegel and Brian Lawton. Single guests are invited to wear a pink rose to identify their romantic status, and to "participate in a variety of titillating matchmaking games"; masks are mandatory in all nondining areas between 8 and 10pm.

Romantic Relaxation

Cynergy Spa

87 Ft. Greene Pl., nr. Lafayette Ave., Fort Greene

Enjoy a supremely romantic interlude with a special couples package : It starts with a relaxing dip in the jacuzzi, then a 55-minute body massage, side-by-side. Afterward, sample the complimentary strawberries, chocolate, and Champagne.

Body by Brooklyn Spa & Lounge

275 Park Ave., nr. Washington Ave., Fort Greene; 718-923-9400

Choose from two hour-long massage packages for your V-day: Couples Aromatherapy or Couples Deep Tissue which both provide access to the B3 Wet Lounge (a series of saunas, steam rooms, and hot and cold showers).

Specials menus Valentine's Day in Manhattan restaurants

Uptown

Red Rooster Harlem

310 Lenox Ave., nr. 125th St.; 212-792-9001

Swedish-Ethiopian chef Marcus Samuelsson will present an affordable three-course menu with options like cauliflower soup topped with caviar, jerked trout with quail egg, duck two ways, and a passion fruit mousse with rum cake croutons.

Price: $55

Seasonal

132 W. 58th St., nr. Sixth Ave.; 212-957-5550

The Michelin-starred kitchen will be serving five or seven courses of contemporary Austrian fare like a beef tenderloin with endive and a velvety carrot-parsnip soup. Dessert is a classic chocolate soufflé with raspberries.

Price: five courses ($85), seven courses ($99)

Midtown

Butter Midtown

70 W. 45th St., nr. Sixth Ave.; 212-253-2828

The uptown outpost of chef Alex Guarnaschelli's downtown restaurant will have two seatings this V-Day, both of which feature plenty of vegetarian options. Early birds can dine on three courses, including chanterelle mushroom soup to start and frozen Meyer lemon pie for dessert. Later folks can pick between plates like buttered Maine lobster or fresh ricotta ravioli as part of their romantic four-course meal.

Price: three courses $80; four courses $125

Fresco by Scotto

34 E. 52nd St., nr. Park Ave.; 212-935-3434

A little kitsch never hurt anyone, and this warm family owned restaurant in midtown is serving a heart-shaped pizza Margherita alongside Italian classics like lasagna bolognese, tuna tartare, and creamy ricotta cheesecake for a decadent dessert.

Price: $80

The Red Cat

227 Tenth Ave., nr. 23rd St.; 212-242-1122

This cozy Chelsea spot promises a romantic meal with dishes like pan-crisped salmon with Tokyo turnips, hen of the woods mushrooms, and butternut-squash puree, and desserts like a refreshing lemon-pudding cake or silky chocolate fondue for two.

Price: $70

Downtown

Boqueria

171 Spring St., nr. Thompson St.; 212-343-4255

53 W. 19th St, nr. Sixth Ave; 212-255-4160

At either of this tapas restaurant's locations, choose six small plates to share from a menu that includes braised oxtail and lobster paella, oysters with pickled vegetable relish, and roasted baby beets with crème fraîche and Honeycrisp apples. Finish with a glass of sherry and traditional Churros con Chocolate.

Price: $65

The Harrison

355 Greenwich St., at Harrison St.; 212-274-9310

Couples can dine on squid ink gnocchi, Colorado lamb with crispy Brussels sprouts, and creamy risotto in the candlelit dining room of this classic Tribeca spot overlooking the Hudson.

Price: $75

Jane

100 W. Houston St., nr. Thompson St.; 212-254-7000

Start your meal at this Houston Street spot with Russian crepes stuffed with salmon roe, fill up on braised short ribs with mashed potatoes, and end the meal with a slice of chocolate layer cake served with a mint and blood orange salad.

Price: $55

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