in Zagreb...of course!
Step 1: Get her a thoughtful present. It doesn't need to cost a lot, it tends to be even more thoughtful if you make it yourself. (for example, I've made Tomislav a scrapbook filled with our e-mails, pictures, and sentimental souvenirs, or he's made me a photobook) In this case, T got me tickets for Dinamo Zagreb vs. Ajax and Dinamo vs. Lyon...Champions League!! Yes!!!
Step 2: Take her to the Botanical Garden. If you're from Zagreb, you probably went there as a kid and haven't thought twice about it since then, but trust me, it's so beautiful and peaceful there, it's the perfect place to go for a stroll. It's also a good opportunity to have a funny impromptu photo shoot with your love.
Step 3: If her birthday is this week, you're in luck because it's "Restoran Tjedan" aka Restaurant Week in Zagreb! There are soooooo many options, and I'm extremely grateful that my romantic fiance chose Žlica & Vilica for us to go to. The name means Spoon & Fork, which I thought was adorable when I heard it. It's located close enough to center city that you feel like you're in the heart of it all, but not directly there, so you can still find parking. It's very close to the Zagreb Mosque (which is no longer a Mosque, but actually a museum now), which is a really cute area to take a stroll through. Let me just tell you, Žlica & Vilica are NOT MESSING AROUND with their restaurant week menu. It is OFF THE CHARTS! There is such a variety of options for each course, and I'm so glad Tomi and I chose the ones we did. If you have the opportunity to visit this restaurant, you have to try the chickpea salad and the duck breast, no question about it! The duck was cooked so perfectly, and had the most delicious reduced balsamic sauce ever. We literally sopped up the sauce with bread just so we could have some more of it. The grilled salmon was excellent, and Tomi surprised me at the end of the meal:
Oh yeah, and the best part of it all? 3 course meal for 100 kunas. It doesn't get better than that! Hopefully restaurant week will allow more Croats to enjoy eating out more and they'll become the foodie city that they are meant to be!
Step 4: Finally, to top the night off, ending the night on the other side of the city at Hotel Antonovic's Vertigo Bar is the thing to do. This bar is certainly like no other than I have ever been to. It's located on the top floor of the hotel and the first thing you'll notice is the amazing 360 degree view, since the walls aren't actually walls but windows everywhere. The next thing you'll notice, is that you can actually feel the earth spinning...well, maybe not the earth, but the bar is spinning! Vertigo Bar rotates so that in the time it takes you to finish one cocktail, you'll see the all of the possible views of the city. Prekrasno!