10 Best Cities to Meet Men

10 best cities to meet men
ESSENCE.COM Apr, 03, 2009

1 of 15 Getty Image

We found them: attractive, hardworking and educated brothers who want to meet you. Wondering where they are? We thought so. That’s why we rounded up the Top 10 Best Cities to Meet Black Men, according to real women like you. But we didn’t stop there. We’ve also included useful tips on what to do once you get there. You can thank us later.

First, there’s no need to pick up and move. Traveling on business? Hit a happy hour in a commercial district or a hotel bar that’s popular with locals. On a solo vacation? Dine at restaurants where you can eat at the bar or where there’s open seating to up your chances of rubbing elbows with a single guy. “Embrace the fear you may feel about leaving your comfort zone, and you’ll be more receptive to the men you meet,” says Amy DuBois Barnett, author of “Get Yours: How To Have Everything You Ever Dreamed Of And More!” (Broadway Books).

2 of 15 Corbis

“I live in the D.C. area and there are tons of good-looking men who are 25-30. While I’m not attached, my dating life does thrive! I have met all types of men, from military to professionals. I meet them at the grocery store, on the metro while going to work, and at various events, such as happy hours, museums, wine tasting events and concerts. There’s even a Safeway grocery store known for being a meeting place for singles.

Most recently, I was walking home and a man who was driving by pulled over and got out of his car to introduce himself to me. With opportunities like this in D.C., it’s hard to complain about the single life."

—Ashley Huggins, 28, public relations professional

3 of 15 Corbis

“I’m a Brooklyn girl, so city living is in my blood. I love it all: the shopping, theater, live music, architecture…and Chicago offers it all without the hefty price tag of places like New York and L.A. So, more often than not, you’re going to bump into Mr. Right while you’re out having the time of your life…which is just as it should be.”
—Tamika Simmons, 38, financial services

4 of 15 Getty Image

Men are intimidated by groups of women. They usually only approach you when you’re by yourself. Don’t completely stop hanging out with your girls, but make sure you do things you love by yourself too. We guarantee you’ll meet a guy every time you’re alone at the movies, a lounge, a restaurant, networking events, stores or simply walking around.

5 of 15 Getty Image

“I was born and raised in Chicago, but I’ve been a resident of New York for the past two years and I’ve met all types of Black men. To me, the best type is one with a job, ambition, drive, loyalty, and intelligence—all of which are complementary to me. I’ve met men like this in New York. It’s a fast-paced city, and in order to make it here you have to work hard and have a vision/plan. Those that can make it here can make it anywhere.”

—Courtney Eddings, 25, marketing associate

6 of 15 Corbis

“Charlotte is a great place, especially during its annual CIAA HBCU basketball tournament. With its growing popularity, it’s an opportune setting to engage with a variety of attractive men from the host city and neighboring cities.”

—Kandace Harris, 33, college professor

7 of 15 Corbis

“As adults, we set up daily routines to improve our efficiency, but those routines can block us from meeting new people,” says Alex B. Wright, relationship coach and author of “How to Get and Keep a Good Man: From Successfully Single to Happily Married” (iUniverse). So instead of taking the same route to work every day, switch it up next week. You might catch the glance of a handsome stranger on the train. Always wear sweats to the supermarket on Saturdays? Try rocking a skirt and some heels.

8 of 15 Corbis

“I was out with friends a few nights ago and most of the guys there were unpretentious and approachable. They were having a good time and had no agenda. If a guy saw a pretty girl he wanted to dance with, he simply asked her to dance. On my way out, a lot of guys approached me and said they were intimidated to do so earlier. So I would recommend separating from your friends and casually browsing a party or event. Each time I was approached I was alone. Try Orlando!”

—Myriam Jean, 29, middle school instructor

9 of 15 Corbis

“I moved to Connecticut in 2006, and I was amazed at the hardworking mature men I met and encountered. It was such a shock to see so many focused, driven, independent, down-to-earth men in a place that NO one seems to talk about. Even my mother has come to visit, just to ‘man watch’ with me.”

—Shawnta M., 31, health information manager

10 of 15 Getty Image

We all remember the pictures of the Obamas exiting a Chicago restaurant—the President in a casual suit and the First Lady in a bouncy skirt and boots—after a romantic postelection victory dinner. And we’ve seen countless images of R&B divas Ashanti and Beyoncé out with their significant others while decked in (high) heels and a head-turning outfit. Well, there may be a reason (beyond the paparazzi) these ladies always look glam beside their man: getting fancy leaves a big impression. “Men want to be wowed,” says celebrity stylist André Austin, who has worked with Keri Hilson, Kanye West and Jay-Z. “They want to know you took the time to make an effort for them.” From now on, save your sneakers and Juicy sweats for brunch with your besties, and highlight your best assets when you’re out with your (potential) man.

11 of 15 Corbis

“I find on the East Coast guys can be a little skeptical and less aggressive. But the guys in Detroit are pleasantly forward. They are friendly and upfront if they’re interested in a woman. Like at the cabarets when we’re doing the hustle on the dance floor, they’ll happily and quickly approach you to dance.”

—Raquel B., 35+, media professional

12 of 15 Corbis

“Despite some negative things we’ve heard, there are plenty of beautiful, hardworking men who strive to improve their communities, uplift the youth, and are great role models in Oakland, also known as the Bay Area. I was fortunate to snag one and met him dancing to “Lover’s Rock” in San Francisco. Nine years later, we’re still going strong. It’s not always about where you live, but who you’re looking for."

—Jenny Joseph, 32, government employee

13 of 15 Getty Image

If a man looks interesting to you, say something—anything—and you could be halfway to a date. Hint: “Hi” works wonders. Men consider the most innocuous encounters to hold the possibility of romance. According to researchers at Elon University in North Carolina, when men and women meet for the first time, men are more likely than women to consider even brief interactions to contain sexual undertones.

14 of 15 Corbis

“Every year my girls and I get together for our annual trip to the Essence Music Festival to enjoy the festivities and also the New Orleans men! I have found the city of New Orleans to be a treasure chest for finding beautiful Black men. There is just something about the Black male New Orleans natives and the sense of pride they take in their city, along with their sexy accents and beautiful skin tones. I look forward to it every year!”

—Ravi Windom, 26, public relations executive

15 of 15 Corbis

“L.A. is a fabulous place with amazing weather. You can sit outside and have drinks all year round. There is such a diverse population of people that work in various areas of the entertainment industry. When I first moved out here everyone warned me that the people would be superficial, but I think that like attracts like. I’ve met a lot of genuine and fun guys in L.A.”

—Codie Brooks, 25, graduate student

What is your favorite city to meet men in? Did your town make our list? Tell us below!

Cities are based on responses from an informal e-mail survey.