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Is Alexandria A City For Lovers?

According to Amazon's data, Alexandria, Va., stands apart as a city for romance in our region.
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According to Amazon's data, Alexandria, Va., stands apart as a city for romance in our region.

Virginia is for lovers, as the popular advertising campaign goes. But according to a new list released by Amazon.com, one Virginia city stands out for its romantic inclinations: Alexandria.

Alexandria ranked fifth on Amazon's list of the "Top 20 Most Romantic Cities in the U.S." The Seattle-based online retailer determined the rankings using sales numbers for romance novels, romantic comedies, romantic music (including Dean Martin, Barry White, Luther Vandross and more) and sexual wellness products for cities of 100,000 residents or greater.

That Alexandria would be singled out for its loving ways is no surprise to florist Stephen Robinson, who owns Bloom Fresh Flowers in Alexandria.

"People find Alexandria to be quaint, romantic, in general a kind of respite from real life," Robinson says.

Robinson says that he's observed romantic spirits buoyed with the end of sequestration and moves amongst lawmakers in Richmond to make Virginia friendlier to gay people.

"From my point of view, this is more of a heartfelt year already because I have more weddings than normal for January and February," Robinson says. "We already met our Valentine's Day numbers from last year — it seems there are a lot more sentimental feelings this year."

Topping Alexandria on the list of amorous American cities were San Antonio, Seattle, Knoxville, Tenn., and Miami. Unlike Alexandria, which has been near the top of this list going back to 2011, this is the first year that either San Antonio or Seattle was included on the list.

And while Washington, D.C., didn't get any love amongst lovers, it did fare better than its major metro neighbor to the north. Amazon identified New York, along with California towns San Buenaventura and El Monte, as the least romantic cities based on residents' purchasing habits.

Whether you live in Alexandria or not, Robinson has some advice for those looking to step up the romance in the lead-up to Valentine's Day next Friday.

"Don't wait until the last minute to order," says Robinson, the florist. "Women always appreciate getting their flowers early in the week. That way they can show them off the whole week instead of just getting it on Valentine's Day."

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