Dating can be like assembling the silver monkey in Legends of the Hidden Temple, a challenge requiring wits, luck, and passing knowledge of primate anatomy. Skip the confusing steps of pickup artistry with today's icebreaking Groupon: for $239, you get a Simplify Me matchmaking package from SpeedLA Dating (a $479 value).
The romance experts at British, Bravo-approved SpeedLA Dating developed the Simplify Me package to hatch two blind dates for lovebirds who tend to be in their early 20s to early 40s. After signing up for matchmaking services, participants receive an email with questions about their background and preferences, then flesh out detailed answers during in-person, phone, or smoke-signaled consultations. Owner Anoush and her team of Cupid-trained archery experts plumb their speed-dating events' guest lists and lasso other clients to curate an expert-designed portfolio of good catches, all of whom are vetted with a background check. Then Anoush personally selects each of the two date mates the package holder will meet, revealing only first names and the blood types of their zodiac signs.
For the two allotted date nights, Groupon holders meet at a staff-chosen venue or customize their experience by choosing a favorite spot or mining SpeedLA Dating's concierge services for advice on the suavest wine bar or flirtiest antigravity chamber in the city. After each date, the matchmade let the pros know whether they'd like to exchange email addresses with their date mate. A handy list of FAQs further illuminates the pulse-revving procedure and can be printed out to fold into a boutonniere-stuffing carnation.
The British- and Bravo-approved SpeedToronto Dating (a subsidiary of SpeedLA Dating) assists aspiring singles in finding romance with two-hour bouts of sophisticated speed dating. British hosts guide guests through the entryway of a moodily lit locale to begin striking chords with 18 singles of the opposite sex in the hope that a playful rendition of “Dueling Banjos” develops between heartstrings. After the staff seats each lady at her own secluded table, gentlemen jaunt from gal to gal, spending seven to eight minutes with each potential partner. As the minutes full of cheeky conversation and gourmet appetizers pass, participants make their decisions about date mates on a provided card and check their email 24 hours later to see if a match has been made.
Like the BBC News and the definition of chips, SpeedToronto Dating offers a British spin on familiar American tropes. Each speed-dating session eschews noisy whistles and impersonal nametags for civilized conversation enders and an email about fellow attendees prior to the event. Chic consultants also provide free optional makeovers for ladies 30 minutes before each event.