What’s Up for Valentine’s Day 2015


Russell Stover Fancy Foil Heart

Russell Stover Fancy Foil Heart

Love it or dread it—there’s passion on either side of the opinion—no one can deny that Valentine’s Day sparks thoughts of hearts, roses, candle light, romance and _________ (fill in your own blank).

One thing is for sure, this romantic holiday is inspiring shoppers to spend over $18 billion this year. That is a lot of merchandise for a single day celebration compared to the Christmas holiday season which lasts for two months and brings in over $616 billion in sales, according to the National Retail Federation.

What’s Selling for Valentine’s Day
Greeting Cards

1-800-Flowers Romantic Red Roses

Love verses are shared through some 145 million greetings cards purchased making Valentine’s Day the second most popular day to buy greetings cards behind Christmas.

When it comes to flowers, more bouquets and arrangements are sold only on Mother’s Day than Valentine’s Day, according to top flower seller, 1-800-Flowers.


Diets are off on this day. Celebrating one’s favorite Valentine continues to be manifested by gifts of candy with expected sales to be over $1.5 billion. Heart shaped boxes of premium assorted chocolates are the classic gift.  Gift baskets, hearts and strawberries dipped in chocolate are among the top sellers

Russell Stover Strawberries Dipped in Milk Chocolate

Russell Stover Strawberries Dipped in Milk Chocolate

from the classic chocolatiers like Russell Stover, Hershey’s, Godiva, Sees and Lindt. Oreos have even been introduced for February as a “red velvet” variety.

And, then there’s always the ever popular “hearts.” Sweethearts, the tiny candy with the mini sayings like “ were created in 1866 and were stamped with classic sayings like “Kiss Me,” Be Mine,” and “Sweet Talk.” In recent years, sayings have included “My Treat,” “Yum Yum,” “Get My Drift” and even a lineup in Spanish.

Bean to Bar Chocolatiers

More and more independent chocolate makers are coming on the scene each year. Here are a few noteworthy “bean to bar” makers that may not be offering the heart shape box but have chocolate to die for:

Olive & Sinclair Chocolate

Olive & Sinclair Selection of four chocolate bars

Olive & Sinclair Selection of four chocolate bars

Askinosie Chocolate

Escazu Artisan Chocolates

Mindo Chocolate Makers

Theo Chocolate

Taza Chocolate

Bling and Bangles

Jewelry is the next most popular thing to buy on Valentine’s Day, and Tiffany & Co. is expected to sell about $4.4 billion, according to the National Retail Federation.

How Valentines Are Celebrating

Most couples will be heading out to restaurants. According to the National Restaurant Association expects about one-quarter of Americans to head to their favorite restaurant.

Preparing a special dinner at home can be just as romantic and keep more money in the bank. Most women, however, prefer to be treated on this special day.

NYCGO.com. Credit: M. White

Credit: M. White

Valentine Travel. Big Apple Ranks as Top U.S. Valentine’s Day Destination

A review of Valentine’s Day travel plans by customers of leading travel insurer Allianz Global Assistance, finds that New York takes the crown as this year’s most popular domestic destination.

While many romance seekers chose to bundle up in the Big Apple, Cancun, famous for its white sand beaches, took this year’s top spot among international travelers.  Allianz Travel Insurance reviewed 21,000 trips planned by its customers from February 13 to February 16 to determine this year’s hottest Valentine’s Day destinations.

“New York is a great place to visit year round, especially for couples planning a romantic Valentine’s Day weekend,” said Joe Mason, chief marketing officer at Allianz Global Assistance USA.  “But whether they’re heading to New York, Cancun or elsewhere, they still understand the importance and value of remaining practical and protecting one another with travel insurance as they have 24/7 access to our travel assistance services should something unexpected occur.”

The review also found that domestically, Las Vegas and Chicago ranked the second and third most popular cities to spend Valentine’s Day, while Toronto came in second for international travelers, followed by Los Cabos, Mexico and Nassau, Bahamas, each tying for third.

The top Valentine’s Day destinations were ranked by the percentage of travelers heading to a particular destination.  Other U.S. destinations ranking in the top 10 were San Francisco, Seattle, Los Angeles, Washington, Dallas, Atlanta and Portland, while San Juan, Vancouver, Mexico City, Montreal, Puerto Vallarta, Montego Bay and Punta Cana rounded out the international top ten destinations.

Fun Valentine’s Day Stuff
 “Celebrate, Celebrate, Dance to the Music” — Greatest Love Songs List

Here are some of the greatest love songs for your Valentine’s Day play list:

  1. Love potion #9, The Searchers (1963)
  2. Wild Thing I think I Love You, The Troggs (1966)
  3. Who Wrote the Book of Love, The Monotones (1957)
  4. Cheek to Cheek (“I’m in heaven when we’re dancing cheek to cheek.”) Irving Berlin, composer (1935)
  5. When a Man Loves a Woman, Percy Sledge (1966)
  6. First Time I Ever Saw Your Face, Roberta Flack (1969)
  7. Signed, Sealed, Delivered I’m Yours, Stevie wonder (1970)
  8. Be My Baby, The Ronettes (1963)
  9. The Way You Look Tonight, performed by Fred Astaire (1936)
  10. Be Careful It’s My Heart, Irving Berlin (Excerpt: Sweetheart of mine, I’ve sent you a valentine. Sweetheart of mine, it’s more than a valentine. Be careful, it’s my heart.)
  11. I Wanna Dance with Somebody , Whitney Houston’s (1987)
  12. Crazy in Love, Beyonce, Jay-Z (2003)
  13. I Just Called to Say I Love You, Stevie Wonder (1984)
  14. Justify My Love, Madonna (1993)
  15. The Power of Love, Celine Dion (1993)
  16. Greatest Love of All, Whitney Houston (1985)
  17. Dream Love, Mariah Carey (1993)
  18. Crazy Little Thing Called Love, Queen (1980)
  19. Best of My Love, The Emotions, (1977)
  20. I’ll Make Love to You, Boyz II Men (1994)
Top 10 Great Love Stories of All Time

According to Goodreads, the world’s largest site for readers and book recommendations since 2007, here are the top ten greatest love stories of all time. It’s interesting to note that love endures the test of time judging by the publication dates:

  1. Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen (1813)
  2. Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë (1847)
  3. After Forever Ends by Melodie Ramone (2012)
  4. Wuthering Heights by Emily Brontë (1847)
  5. Romeo and Juliet by William Shakespeare (1594)
  6. Gone with the Wind, by Margaret Mitchell (1936)
  7. Persuasion, by Jane Austen (1818)
  8. Twilight, by Stephenie Meyer (2005)
  9. Yours Truly, Taddy (The Undergrad Years, #2) by Avery Aster (2014)
  10. The Notebook (The Notebook, #1) by Nicholas Sparks (1996)
10 Things to Do on V Day If You are Single
  1. Go to the movies or check out a local theatre production with a couple of friends.
  2. Treat yourself to a spa experience. Nothing better than a manicure, pedicure, facial or massage to feel good about yourself.
  3. Help with Meals on Wheels, give a few hours to a local community group.
  4. Check out a local museum or arboretum.
  5. Have a movie fest. Line up a triple-header of movies, invite some friends over or go it alone.
  6. Bake Valentine’s cookies or cupcakes and share with neighbors
  7. Host a Valentine’s dinner for your parents.
  8. Offer to babysit for a family member or friend. Give of yourself.
  9. Take a local workshop to improve your skill or advance your hobby interest.
  10. Do not stay home and brood. Do something fun for you or, better yet, for someone else.

Still haven’t decided what to do for Valentine’s Day?  Most people wait until the last minute.  You are not alone. It’s like the British rock group, Queen, sang:

This thing called love I just can’t handle it
this thing called love I must get round to it
I ain’t ready
Crazy little thing called love


Research contributor:  Dana Perkiss

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Subscribe to Healthy Aging® Magazine

The Premier Lifestyle Magazine for All Ages

Receive four digital issues delivered to your inbox. Just $24.95