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Melbourne’s Best First Date Bars

Whether you believe in love at first sight or in order to meet your match you swipe right, EVERYONE gets nervous meeting someone new. On top of this, you have the added pressure of finding the perfect place that will set the tone for the entire evening and and means the difference between going home with date number two or after a bad choice of restaurant rushing to the loo …

No need to start panicking, we have done some investigating and come up with some bars that will impress that special someone new. Basically, we’re just helping you avoid that awful awkward silence where the best topic you can come up with is how great the weather is.

We have covered everything from an intimate setting if you feel like you’re meeting the one, to the bar that exudes nothing but relaxing vibes -we have found a place for love struck soul! So go on, it’s time to ask that special someone on a date. Good luck!

The Emerson Rooftop
141-145 Commercial Road, South Yarra


Located in South Yarra, The Emerson Rooftop is a multilevel venue that offers a perfect casual first date vibe.

Head on up to the roof for exceptional views of the city in a stylish setting with day beds, outdoor heaters and timber decking. You don’t even need to worry about the weather since there’s a retractable roof. What’s more romantic than sharing food and learning each others likes and dislikes? (And possibly allergies). Featuring live music on Fridays and DJ’s on Saturday and Sunday evenings, you’ll have the perfect backdrop of music for the second part of your date.

And if it’s going really well, you can stick around for the glitz and glamour and show off a dance move or two, or get cosy in the private booths. If you’re both feeling like you want to take the next step, head to the cocktail bar and lounge downstairs where an intimate setting awaits you with unique light fixtures, secret corners and a view of the dance floor.

If you’ve run out of things to talk about, you can always talk about the scenic views…

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103 Lonsdale Street, Melbourne


Bomba offers a Spanish tapas restaurant on the ground level and a wonderful rooftop upstairs. With great views overlooking busy Lonsdale Street, you can have a cosy first date getting to know each other whilst sharing one of the 15 tapas dishes on the menu along with refreshing cocktails. Just imagine getting a drink while sitting window-side as the sun sets? (You may have a treetop or two blocking your view)… Sounds pretty romantic. Bomba’s retractable roof will fix any concerns you have about Melbourne’s temperamental weather. Or a great way for you to offer her your jacket. Sorry, getting off topic now.

A true inner city Melbourne experience! If you need more than tapas to cure your hunger needs, then head downstairs for a Spanish fiesta in an intimate setting with dimly lit lighting for something more romantic.

A little birdy told us they have vermouth on tap. Need I say more?

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Arbory Bar & Eatery
1 Flinders Walk, Melbourne


Located between Flinders Street Station and Yarra River, Arbory Bar & Eatery offers the perfect casual atmosphere for a relaxed first date without all the pressure. As a large-scale venue (100 metres of uninterrupted views to be exact), you can get away from the crowds and just be your beautiful self whether you want an early morning breakfast date or a late afternoon drink. Arbory offers an all-day bar and eatery with share plates, comfort food and creative sandwiches and burgers.

A definite-must-go-to outdoor bar with heaters to keep you cosy and a great vibe that will not necessarily guarantee a second date but will definitely help!

Why go anywhere else when there’s wine on tap? But if you’re not too interested in wine, then Arbory offers cocktails on tap too! An Arbory Sangria anyone?

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Captain Baxter
10/18 Jacka Boulevard, St Kilda


Overlooking Port Phillip Bay, Captain Baxter offers a relaxed beachside cocktail and lounge bar additional of an outdoor deck to embrace every bit of sunshine. You can’t go wrong meeting your potential soul mate with a view like this. Whether you want to relax in the outdoor terrace that is decorated in blue and white nautical stripes or inside for a more intimate setting in one of the luxurious booth seating.

With an Asian street food inspiration, Captain Baxter has strict orders that the menu is to be shared and eaten in a social environment with a cocktail in hand. Can’t argue with the Captain now, can we? An extensive beverage list is at your fingertips and pitchers can be shared with your date or choose one of the many cocktails, wine or beer on offer. Live music on Saturday and Sunday evenings for great tunes.

$10 cocktail hour from 5-7pm on Monday, Thursday and Fridays!

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36 Swan Street, Richmond


Holliava is located in the heart of Richmond offering 3 bars over two levels. The main bar is a contemporary bar with sleek interior while the beer garden embraces the sunshine with lush greenery and the fireside lounge offers warmth and comfort. Spoilt for choice! There is an extensive drinks list from wine favourites, Holliava cocktail specials and classics, beer and cider. Bar nibbles are available if you’re feeling a little peckish. A casual atmosphere for those D&M conversations, outdoor heating to keep you warm and intimate spaces for some privacy.

If you want to add some (additional) laughs and entertainment to your date, then Holliava offers board games and giant games. What better way break down the barrier of playing 20 questions to a fun day of playing cheeky games?

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By Sahar Nessar


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