Love is in the air and even COVID-19 can’t stop love birds from celebrating their affection for each other in many different ways on February 14 – Valentine’s Day!
As the hotels, restaurants, and cafés deck themselves up in red and create enchanting ambiences with roses and hearts, couples are looking forward to celebrate the day, though in keeping with current restrictions. Wearing face masks and maintaining social distancing are some of the many precautionary measures emphasised by hotels to ensure safe revelry among patrons on the day.
There are many others who have organised their own celebrations among family and friends in their private creative space. Fully aware of the precautions needed, in view of the pandemic, people have cut down the size of their parties to the bare minimum, and have also made arrangements for sanitising guests and maintaining hygiene.
Said al Balushi, a businessman from Amerat, said, “Every year, I do celebrate this day with my wife with a romantic walk on the beach followed by a good dinner in a five-star hotel. However, this year, we have decided not to venture out and will celebrate the day in our villa. My wife has made many creative arrangements and so have I. We must remember this is a day to celebrate love and life. So, we must be responsible and take every measure to safeguard ourselves as well as our fellow beings.”
Like Balushi, there are many who prefer to stay indoors and try out creative things, mainly in decoration and preparing meals. Omar Musalmy, who got married recently, said, “This is our first Valentine’s Day together and I want to take my wife for a nice, romantic, candle-lit dinner with roses all around. I never ever celebrated this day before, but this time, I shall make it memorable. There are now a few new rules that we all have to follow. But, I’ll try to make the most of the day.”
Nikhil Verma, who works as a sales executive in a private firm, said for him Valentine’s Day meant going out for a long drive. He said, “Every year, I go for a long drive with my wife and have a good dinner and enjoy the evening till late night. This year, too, we shall do the same. May be, we will drive on the Yiti road – that would be a nice outing. We don’t have too many plans, but this day is a good excuse for us to enjoy and relax in each other’s company.”
Fahad al Rashdi, a reinsurance specialist at Oman United Insurance Company, said, “I do believe that celebrating happy occasions together, as well as difficult times helps in enhancing relationships. More than celebrating Valentine’s Day, spouses need to listen to each other and inculcate an understanding that has no room for boredom. Sharing the day’s events and taking all decisions together, no matter how big or small, is what enhances confidence between spouses. This is a day to remind oneself of all these acts that foster love.”
Most of the hotels in the city are offering dinner and staycation packages with special offers for couples to dine in style or have an overnight stay, also indulge in luxurious wellness treatments. While bookings are picking up, the last-minute romantics are also expected to throng some of the happening places in town where outdoor seating by the sea is in good demand.