In today’s digital world, finding “the one” can feel a bit like online shopping without the easy return policy. When it comes to matters of the heart, the tradition of matchmaking offers a more personal approach to dating, as well as plenty of additional benefits like privacy and realism. Anyone who has engaged in online dating knows that it can be time-consuming to wade through profiles, and numerous dates might be necessary before finding someone whose live persona corresponds to their avatar. Replacing this DIY approach with the skills of a personal matchmaker eradicates the guesswork.
“The main difference is when people do online dating, they are essentially marketing themselves,” says Jennifer Miotke, president, One on One Matchmaking. “Obviously, they market themselves well. When you go to a matchmaker, you have a filter.”
And that filter can guarantee important factors like current photos or that a potential match is actually single. In other words, a matchmaker has the inside scoop on your date before you meet them. This type of important insight has helped Miotke and One on One matchmakers generate hundreds of successful marriages and thousands of committed relationships during the past two decades.
One on One achieves relationship success by offering customized screening to give clients tailor-matched introductions. Your matchmaker works like a best friend who genuinely wants you to find love. The process starts with an extensive personal interview, an in-person meeting and a realistic profile. The matchmakers schedule dates for you and can recommend stylists and photographers, as well as offer dating advice. And like a best friend, a matchmaker will review the date with you afterward.
Founder of One on One Matchmaking Sarah Kathryn Walmsley had run a dinner dating concept for several years and continuously received requests for more specialized service. She launched One on One to cater to professionals who were too busy to spend night after night screening potential love interests.
The Eight at Eight Dinner Club is still in full force and has nearly 300 active members. These dinners bring together eight strangers who are matched based on age, background, professional level and interests. A hostess kicks off the evening by buying a round of drinks, introducing the guests to each other and arranging the seating.
One on One and Eight at Eight are separate options, but some singles take advantage of both. And both have led to plenty of success stories. For example, Katie*, a busy attorney in her late 20s, was friendly and fun but too busy to date.
“She said she had no time for a social life and to just put her at every table because after all, she had to eat,” says Walmsley. “Sure enough, on her tenth dinner date and his first dinner date, she met the love of her life – Don! I still get Christmas cards from them every year that include pictures of their growing family.”
The clients who walk through the doors of One on One are diverse in characteristics like age, ethnicity and ideology, but they share professional success and a desire to meet the right person at the right time. Consider Ben, a 30-year-old yogi who immediately fell for jiu-jitsu-practicing attorney Emma. For Miotke, the match was intuitive – both clients were intense, open-minded people.
Many of the matches at One on One follow that pattern. When your matchmaker sets you up, it’s probably going to be a fit.
*All client names have been changed.