Esquire Magazine

The Dating Game 2.0 - Esquire Presents the 21st Century Gentleman’s Guide to Relationships. – Married, divorced and single again, London based reporter Julian Keeling tries to discover if the dating game still offers anything for him.

"Some years ago, I spent a lot of time immersed in the brave new world of internet dating. Despite the initial rush from the sense of options, some pathos, humor and a few 'interesting' encounters, I felt that it was taking me further away from the possibility of a more meaningful relationship. The problem, I concluded after years of dating this way, wasn’t the girls I was meeting: it was me. I won’t bore you with details but what I realized was that the girls I was attracted to were not necessarily the sort of girls with whom I could form secure long-term relationships.

If the problem was the people I chose, then it made sense that I should let someone else do the choosing. No sooner had I thought this than an opportunity presented itself to me, and I found myself in the offices of New York’s up market dating agency, Premier Match, which operates at the exclusive end of the market with clients travelling across the Atlantic on a regular basis. Where better than Manhattan, with its urgent energy and go-for-it enthusiasm, to try something new to re-invent oneself?

Over the next couple of months, I went on several dates in uptown wine bars, mid-town lounges and downtown sushi-fusion, chill-out restaurants. The women were, as promised attractive, intelligent and successful. As the process continued I returned to London and met women through their partnered office, the exclusive London-based dating agency Berkeley International. Both services did provide an advantage of allowing you the opportunity to meet people you wouldn’t ordinarily meet and the ones you do go out with have been carefully selected. While family and friends approve of the steps I’m taking to exclude my own warped instincts as to who I should go on dates with, I also believe they approve of my public confession that it is better to go through the process of being able to reject and be rejected. It’s about being proactive and continuing the search."