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DTLA does V-Day: Your guide to food, flowers and events for Valentine's Day

By Hayley Fox
Published: Tuesday, February 12, 2013, at 09:57AM
via Mykl Roventine

The average person will spend upwards of $130 this Valentine's Day, so you might as well spend this money where you live and work.

The average person will spend upwards of $130 this Valentine's Day, according to the National Retail Federation (NRF), so you might as well spend this money where you live and work. There's plenty to eat, drink and buy in the comfort of your neighborhood.

FLOWERS: About one third of people who are partaking in Valentine's Day festivities will be buying flowers, the NRF says, spending a total of $1.9 billion. To cater to this demand, the L.A. Flower District will be operating under extended hours this week. Select vendors are open until 9 p.m. on Tuesday and starting on Wednesday, they will be open 24 hours "until the last customer leaves on Valentine's Day."

“Valentine’s Day is the second busiest day of the year for the Flower District, as it is one of the few, if not the only place in Los Angeles where you can find discounted roses on Valentine’s Day,” said Kent Smith, executive director of the L.A. Fashion District.

Shoppers should bring cash and their creativity, as the district sells discounted floral supplies for people wanting to make their own flower arrangements.

SOMETHING SWEET AND SOMETHING SPARKLY: Whether you're buying presents for your girlfriend or your mom, your BFF or yourself, candy is the real highlight of this retail super-holiday. Ralph's and Target offer jumbo bags of pink and red M&Ms, peanut butter-filled Reese's hearts and the supersize, 7-ounce Hershey Kisses.

Downtown also has no shortage of bakeries to buy specialty cookies, cakes and sweets from. Although Babycakes is now closed, limiting your vegan and gluten free options, Big Man Bakes still cranks out decadent cupcakes such as Caramel Apple and Coconut, and Bottega Louie's colorful macarons are available pretty much year-round.

The Pie Hole in the Arts District sells pie by the slice in house and full pies to go, and there's always Little Tokyo serving up an assortment of Japanese baked goods, mochi and of course... Pinkberry.

If you are looking to impress with more than a red felt heart box full of chocolates, DTLA's jewelry district is the the second largest in the world and has more than 5,000 jewelry stores. Diamond rings, gold bracelets and personalized necklaces and earrings abound, as do belt buckles, watches, and every other accessory you can imagine.

DINNER, DRINKS AND AN EVENING STROLL After you lovebirds are sufficiently wooed by the flowers and candy and gifts, there's a whole night ahead of you. If you're choosing not to hunker down there's a range of romantic and semi-romantic things to do.

ART WALK: Thursday night is conveniently, Art Walk, so you can head to the crowded streets and stroll through the various galleries and pop-up shops browsing with your date. Between 4 and 5 p.m. there's a tour and meet and greet at the new Spring Street Parklets, followed by a 5 p.m. reception at The Falls right down the street.

BUZZ: This beer/wine store is holding an all-bubbly edition of their Thursday Night Flight events this Valentine's Day. Dubbed the "Love Bubbly Deluxe," from 7 to 11 p.m. on Thursday pay $17 and get a flight of four different sparkling wines.

THE EDISON: Hosting a special Valentine's Day dinner, this heavily mood-lit club and restaurant is offering a special package for Thursday. For $115 you get you a dinner for two, two glasses of champagne and a live band and DJ.

LA PHIL: Tickets range from $20 to $200 for this Walt Disney Concert Hall event that includes performances of Mendelssohn, Mozart and Strauss. The evening also includes "special drinks and indulgent delights" after the concert, as well as a photo booth to commemorate the evening.

Patina, the upscale restaurant located right next door, will be serving V-Day multi-course meals ranging from $75 to $150 and including everything from Soy Glazed Lobster to a Tasting of Veal.

A wide range -- in price and flavor -- of other Downtown restaurants are also offering special Valentine's Day meals and packages. Cafe Pinot located outside the Central Library will be offering a three or four course prix fixe menu for $65 to $75, and the Border Grill will also be serving a four-course dinner for $65.

Engine Co. No. 28, Chaya, Kendall's Brasserie, Noé at the Omni Hotel, the Biltmore Hotel, Morton's The Steakhouse, L.A. Prime and others are also running special February 14 dishes. Check their websites for more details.

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