Find the perfect Valentine's Day dinner spot with a little help from AAA's Diamond ratings

On a balcony with a view of the river, in an intimate candle-lit wine cellar, with a penthouse view of the city lights—there's more than one way to enjoy a Valentine's Day dinner date, and AAA Diamond restaurant ratings are a great way to find the right spot. We look at just a few of the many diamond-rated eateries that have the breathtaking views, elegant menus, and romantic atmosphere for a perfect Valentine's Day.

Want more options? Search AAA Diamond-rated restaurants near you, or head to OpenTable and make reservations instantly online.

Southern California

Valentino Santa Monica

Upon entering Piero Selvaggio’s romantic destination restaurant, guests are welcomed by the charming host as if they’re old friends or part of the family. Expertly skilled staff members are knowledgeable about the authentic Italian menu and extensive wine list and are eager to make thoughtful suggestions from both. Diners can’t go wrong choosing from inspired dishes such as Costolette D’Agnello: lamb chops with a pistachio crust and fresh seasonal vegetables.


Four Diamonds. 3115 W. Pico Blvd., Santa Monica
Make a reservation at Valentino.

Photo credit: @valentinosantamonica

Addison Restaurant

Upon arrival, you'll be invited to unwind in the elegant Le Salon. The bar boasts old-world European charm, and the main dining area features vaulted wood beams highlighting sparkling chandeliers. Executive Chef William Bradley brings to life artful, French-inspired cuisine that changes seasonally. The many courses are well orchestrated and the refined staff is attentive and accommodating; together they create a memorable experience that can last for hours in the relaxed ambiance of this renowned establishment.


Five Diamonds. 5200 Grand Del Mar Way, San Diego
Make a reservation at Addison Restaurant.


Photo credit: @addisonrestaurant



Hau Tree Lanai

Watching the sunset is an event at this longtime restaurant. Dine on fresh seafood from the Hawaiian waters or the prix fixe four-course menu for $69. The restaurant overlooks the beach beneath ancient hau trees where author Robert Louis Stevenson once relaxed and wrote. Validated three-hour parking is offered.


Three Diamonds. 2863 Kalakaua Ave., Honolulu
Make a reservation at Hau Tree Lanai.


Photo credit: @newotanikaimana


This restaurant offers Pacific Rim and Southeast Asian cuisine in a contemporary setting. Located on the lobby level of the hotel but set on a rise overlooking the lush tropical grounds, cascading waterfalls, sandy beach and breaking surf, it's a great place to catch the sunset. Duck pot stickers, prawn and mango salad and hoisin-glazed pork ribs are menu highlights. A sushi bar and complimentary valet parking are available.


Three Diamonds. 200 Nohea Kai Dr., Kaanapali
Make a reservation at Japengo.


Photo credit: @hyattmaui

New Mexico


Whether you choose to dine on the porch to watch the art gallery aficionados and gift shoppers pass by, or inside in the quietly elegant surroundings, the polished and attentive service will smooth your dining experience. The Southwestern-style cuisine highlights fresh seafood dishes, spicy pan-roasted quail and the signature grilled black pepper elk tenderloin. Don't plan to skip dessert—the Meyer lemon crepe is not to be missed.


Four Diamonds. 724 Canyon Rd., Santa Fe
Make a reservation at Geronimo.

Photo credit: @geronimo

Bien Shur Restaurant

At the top of the Sandia Resort, the tasteful restaurant and bar offers spectacular views of the Sandia Mountains and golf course to the east or the city of Albuquerque to the west. Outdoor seating is available on the ninth-floor terrace. The creative menu offers a variety of fish, poultry, fowl, game and steaks. The excellent dessert cart presentation is difficult to resist.


Three Diamonds. 30 Rainbow Rd NE, Albuquerque 
Make a reservation at Bien Shur Restaurant.


Photo credit: @bienshurrestaurant



Arthur's Prime Steaks & Seafood

If you hate when formal dining is replaced with a flashier, less substantial experience, this is the place for you. The servers are formally dressed, well-versed on the menu and devoid of pretentiousness. Dine on items like lump crabcake, oysters Rockefeller, ahi tuna and, of course, a selection of steaks. The setting is decidedly formal, yes, and a little dim, but the staff will make you feel like family. There are booths in the main dining room that can be closed off with a velvet curtain for a totally private dining experience. 

Three Diamonds. 15175 Quorum Drive, Addison
Make a reservation at Arthur's.

Photo credit: @arthurssteakhouse


Overlooking the Theater District, this contemporary restaurant offers great panoramic views of the city through full-size windows. The atmosphere is bustling as the staff competently and expediently serves guests to enable them to make the evening's performance. The seafood-rich menu (with three sauce choices) also includes steak and chicken options. During the week, this is a popular lunch spot for the business crowd.


Three Diamonds. 800 Bagby Street, Houston
Make a reservation at Artista.


Photo credit: @artista


Missouri & Kansas

Cielo Restaurant

Located on the eighth floor, diners can enjoy a fine meal while taking in the stunning views of the St. Louis Arch and the Riverfront. The menu is modern Italian with great use of fresh herbs, house-made pasta, and a focus on seasonality using local products. The service staff is happy to cater to all whims. An extensive wine list is offered.


Four Diamonds. 999 N. 2nd Street, St. Louis
Make a reservation at Cielo Restaurant.


Photo credit: @fsstlouis

Stock Hill

You'll be wowed by this two-story restaurant's ultra-plush lounge, tall wine displays, and semi-exposed kitchen that beckons you to eat, drink, and be merry. A patio offers views of Brush Creek and The Plaza. Servers are ever-present and ready with suggestions on food and wine pairings. The menu heavily features high-quality steak options, like the 28-day, dry-aged prime KC strip, as well as well-composed, creative dishes.


Four Diamonds. 4800 Main Street, Kansas City, MO
Make a reservation at Stock Hill.


Photo credit: @stockhillkc



This award-winning restaurant focuses on fresh seafood from around the world, including a raw bar with an array of oyster varieties and sushi rolls. Lending excitement to the contemporary atmosphere are many textures, designs, and accent lighting. The seafood tower for two is popular, as are fresh catches prepared any of eight ways. Ask the server for recommendations, as the menu changes based on market availability.


Four Diamonds. 1218 20th Street S., Birmingham
Make a reservation at Ocean.


Photo credit: @oceanbirmingham

The Trellis Room

Guests find elegant, contemporary dining in a historical setting. The high, two-story, arched stained-glass ceiling is a focal point of the dining room, allowing natural light to brighten the rich, dark wood interior. The seasonally changing menu offers delicious and distinctive creations using fresh ingredients, including many organically raised items.


Four Diamonds. 26 N. Royal Street, Mobile
Make a reservation at The Trellis Room.


Photo credit: @battlehousehotel

Ohio & Pennsylvania


Want to impress your date? This is the place to be. You'll immediately be wowed by the floor-to-ceiling windows that offer a breathtaking view of the city skyline and the Three Rivers area. The menu offerings are straightforward enough with chops, pasta dishes and seafood, as the chef focuses on using the freshest ingredients of the season to ensure that the flavors in every single dish are at their peak.


Four Diamonds. 1230 Grandview Ave., Pittsburgh
Make a reservation at Altius.


Photo credit: @altius_pgh

Hyde Park Prime Steakhouse

Enjoy sophisticated dining in a wood-paneled dining room with red velvet accents, where servers in white jackets present an à la carte menu of USDA Prime dry-aged steaks, lamb chops, and fresh seafood. Sides like lobster mac and cheese, roasted Brussels sprouts, and a 1-pound baked potato are sized for two to share. 


Three Diamonds. 123 W. Prospect Ave., Cleveland
Learn more about Hyde Park Prime Steakhouse.


Photo credit: @hydeparkprimesteakhouse

Tidewater Virginia


This self-proclaimed fusion steakhouse is a stylish spot near the beach featuring modern and creative dishes with influences from Asia to the American South. The wine program is extensive with a fabulous selection and various wine dinners throughout the year choreographed by the chef and the Master Sommelier. The menu changes seasonally, but specialties like blue crab mac 'n' cheese, seared scallops, rack of lamb, and crab hushpuppies are almost always available.


Four Diamonds. 713 19th Street, Suite 102, Virginia Beach
Make a reservation at Zoës.


Photo credit: @zoesrestaurant

Chartreuse Bistro

This small and intimate spot was brought to town by a husband-and-wife team. The daily changing menu is focused on from-scratch dishes in the European tradition. The freshest local offerings from organic farms and purveyors are on the menu.


Three Diamonds. 205 E. City Hall Ave., Norfolk
Learn more about Chartreuse Bistro.


Photo credit: @chartreusebistro

Northern New England


In a restored textile mill overlooking the Merrimack River, this trendy bistro offers an incredible and memorable dining experience. The inviting, upscale décor is crisp and sleek. Highly trained servers are eager to share their knowledge of the menu and offer a wine suggestion. The baked goat cheese and sweet & spices popcorn shrimp are yummy starter options. The lobster-scallop ravioli and bistro steak are terrific entrées — along with their many other tasty options.


Three Diamonds. 75 Arms Street, Manchester, NH
Make a reservation at Cotton.


Photo credit: @cottonrestaurant

Hugo's Restaurant

The chef-inspired menu is a blend of local, regional and international ingredients that are always the highest quality. With a daily changing menu, guests can select à la carte, a five-course tasting menu or opt for the chef's tasting menu. The dining rooms look into an open kitchen, where a team of chefs create truly outstanding dishes.


Four Diamonds. 88 Middle Street, Portland, ME
Make a reservation at Hugo's Restaurant.


Photo credit: @hugosmaine

Even more options

In the mood for a particular kind of cuisine? Want to see if a local fine-dining establishment is Diamond-rated? Just curious what else is out there? Search AAA Diamond-rated restaurants near you, or head to OpenTable and make reservations instantly online.