MANILA, Philippines - With February 14 just around the corner, couples are starting to plan their activities for Valentine's Day.
And they certainly have a lot to choose from -- from candlelit dinners and picnics to DVD nights.
For those who don't want to celebrate this occasion at home, several establishments are offering special promos for Valentine's Day.
Makati Shangri-La Hotel, Manila Hotel and Legend Villas in Mandaluyong City are only among the many places here in Manila where people can celebrate what is considered the sweetest time of the year.
Here, you can spend Valentine's Day by indulging in chocolate, by eating your heart out, or by spending a night of romance:
Indulge in chocolate
Have a sweet Valentine's Day celebration with your special someone by indulging in fine chocolate treats, which are said to have aphrodisiac effects.
Several establishments in Manila have chocolate-themed gifts and promos this Valentine's Day, ideal for those who don't have the time, patience and skill to make their own desserts at home.
Manila Hotel, for one, is offering a delectable flourless chocolate cake with strawberry triple cream cheese, a heavenly dessert for this romantic season of hearts.
The cake comes in medium and large, which are priced at P850 and P1,300, respectively.
Makati Shangri-La Hotel, on the other hand, is bringing back its chocolate bars and fondant-covered statement chocolate cake, called "emoti-cake."
Customers may choose from quirky cakes with messages such as "Would You Be My Valentine?" and "Hugs and Lots of Kisses" for their special someone.
Emoti-cakes and chocolates are available at the hotel's Sinfully Circles bakeshop.
For those who just can't get enough of chocolate, several restaurants now have chocolate buffets to satisfy their guests' sweet cravings.
One of them is the Lola Maria Restaurant at Legend Villas. Here, customers may choose from a wide array of chocolate-infused goods such as cakes, pastries, pies, eclairs, truffles and panna cotta.
A chocolate fountain is also available for those who want to dip their favorite fruits, marshmallows and cookies.
Lola Maria's chocolate buffet is open during weekend lunch hours for the whole month of February. It is priced at P250 per adult and P180 per child.
Eat your heart out
They say the best way to a man's heart is through his stomach, but this may be applied to women, too.
Make your tummies happy this Valentine's Day by eating an excellent meal, whether it be at home, at your favorite dining spot or in a luxurious restaurant.
One of the country's most upscale places to dine in is the Makati Shangri-La Hotel, where guests can enjoy a Valentine dinner buffet while being serenaded by soul singer Bea Tantoco for P2,800 each.
The hotel also has bountiful offerings at its other restaurants -- Circles Event Cafe, Japanese restaurant Inagiku, chic restaurant Red, and Chinese restaurant Shang Palace.
Legend Villas, on the other hand, has a romantic dinner package for 2 at the Lola Maria Restaurant.
The set, which starts at P750 per person, is inclusive of soup, salad, dessert, beverage, a choice of entree and an acoustic musical performance.
Spend a night of romance
Grab this opportunity to relax and get pampered -- take a break from your daily activities and stay at home or in a luxurious hotel with your partner this Valentine's Day.
For those who don't want to burn a hole in the pocket, Legend Villas offers an overnight stay in their Premier Room for P3,850, which has a "special romantic turndown service" with petals, candles, wine and a Valentine token.
To complete the night, couples may arrange a relaxing body massage at P500 per person.
If you have more money to spare, Manila Hotel offers an overnight stay at a Superior Deluxe Room or a Sunset/Sunrise Suite, which comes with a bottle of wine, a praline box and breakfast for 2 at the hotel's newly renovated Cafe Ilang-Ilang.
The rooms, priced from P3,999 to P15,000, may also be transformed into a romantic retreat with a long-stemmed rose on the bed and rose petals on the bath tub.
Makati Shangri-La Hotel, meanwhile, has a Valentine Room Package valid on the weekend of February 11, where local residents may stay in an Executive Room for P14,344 per night.
The offer includes Mercedes Benz pick-up within Metro Manila, a bottle of wine, long-stemmed roses and pralines on arrival day, buffet breakfast for 2 at Circles Event Cafe, and a dining credit of P1,000 per night.
Whether by indulging in chocolate, eating your heart out, spending a night of romance, or a combination of the 3, what's important is you get to celebrate February 14 (and the rest of the year) with the person you love.
Have a happy and memorable Valentine's Day, everyone!