Almost anyone would agree that the meeting new people to expand social circles is a constant struggle for many an urbanite. Now with the proliferation of countless apps like Tinder, Paktor, OKCupid etc. those woes have seeped into our cyber lives, whether you like it or not.
Lets face it, most of us facing this torment are young, well-educated professionals, understandably discerning over whom shall warm the other half of our beds. Enter Grouvly — a site that functions to bring like-minded people together off-line.
After deciding to give Grouvly a whirl, I discovered how fuss-free and straightforward it worked. I spent a total of five minutes on the Grouvly site, registering with my Facebook account before setting up my first Grouvly meet-up! Sans the trouble that might go into building the most enticing profile page (Photoshop + good angles…) or the dreadfully long text exchanges that amount to nothing. All I had to do after signing up was to holler at two girlfriends to join me for a night out.
While I got to choose my own wing women for the 3-on-3 date, Grouvly handpicks your date based on Facebook interests to ensure they are compatible. Within a week, I received a notification from Grouvly confirming our rendezvous, with no additional information other than the time and place (I was starting to love the sense of mystery here!).
Since all I had was a first name, there was no Facebook stalking possibly involved. Having never been on a blind night out, the concept felt entirely foreign to me and I approached the evening with equal parts anticipation and apprehension. At least I had my home girls with me!
Our Grouvly experience required us to pay $25 per person (pre-paid) on the first round of drinks to ensure that everyone shows up, which was a pretty sweet deal if you ask me. Arriving at the swanky rooftop bar, it was nice to know that the reservation was all set and the bar hostess, informed prior to our arrival ushered us from the lobby all the way to our table.
We were already late as it was, but as we were being ushered into the elevators, the staff whispered to us that we were the first party to arrive. Colour me un-impressed.
After a good 15 or so minutes, the guys finally arrive, apologising profusely.
Charming, well dressed and definitely easy on the eyes — what the heck, my initial wrath just fizzled. Turns out two of them got held up at work and the third guy (who was on time) didn’t want to come up to the bar without his bros. But no hate, no shade. Nobody wanted to start off on a sour note so we brushed all of that off quickly and called for drinks.
Conversation flowed smoothly, which was either a testament to the guys’ cultural collateral or Grouvly’s expert matching skills that jumped easily from topic to topic including a shared reverence for Hip Hop to Game of Thrones.
Even though I wouldn’t count on sparks flying at the very first encounter and at a group setting nonetheless, I can see how much easier it is for conversations to flow and anecdotes more animated when your friends are by your side greasing those tires.
I must say, unlike other similar platforms, the Grouvly experience felt personalised and not at all as awkward. At the end of the day, we can agree that it is the surprise element that makes for the novelty — an addictive one perhaps.
With luck, you might just become more than friends, otherwise, who can resist a memorable evening destined for retelling on future Grouvly-s to come?