The Scoop: As singles go on date after date, telling the same stories and making the same jokes, they can start to feel frustrated, burnt out, or just plain bored by the dating scene. These feelings affect how they act on a first date, and that’s not fun for anyone. Matchmakers often have to fight against dating burnout, and one matchmaking firm in Texas has come up with some inventive ways to remind singles how fun dating can be. Rose Matchmaking is shaking up the local dating scene by organizing singles events with wacky themes. Whether they’re inviting clients to go on a hayride or puzzle through an escape room, the matchmakers think outside the box when planning engaging and unique activities that have inspired romance throughout Houston and Dallas.

A couple weeks ago, a man met with matchmaker Jamie Rose of Rose Matchmaking because he was tired of online dating. He told Jamie that the last straw had been when he’d chatted up a woman on Match.com, went on a date with her, and then never heard from her again. He’d thought the date had gone well, but suddenly his online crush wasn’t answering his texts, and he felt demoralized and confused by the whole experience.

Photo of Jamie Rose, Founder of Rose Matchmaking

Jamie Rose started Rose Matchmaking to shake up the Houston dating scene.

Jamie has heard similar stories from singles before, and she immediately assured her new client that the matchmaking process wouldn’t leave him hanging like online dating had. She told him that matchmakers take a lot of uncertainty out of dating by providing post-date feedback to clients. So, even if the answer is still no, at least he’d know why.

“You’ll never not know what happened,” she said. “The whole ghosting thing is happening more often, but it’s not an issue with matchmaking.”

This constructive feedback process distinguishes matchmaking from traditional dating and online dating, where singles have to guess what they’re doing right or wrong. As a matchmaker, part of Jamie’s job is to tell her clients how they can improve and make a better impression on the next date. Instead of letting singles figure things out on their own, matchmakers provide helpful dating consultations that set single men and women up for success in the modern dating scene.

Rose Matchmaking further distinguishes itself from its competitors by offering its clients the opportunity to meet one another at invite-only events in Houston and Dallas. These singles events range from dance classes to networking events, but they all have an original theme designed to catch people’s attention and give them something to talk about as they mingle in the crowd and meet pre-screened matches.

“People often ask about our events. They like the fact that we offer something new and different,” Jamie said. “We try to make our events more fun and interesting, and people have been really receptive to them.”

Clients Get a Second Chance at a First Impression

Rose Matchmaking’s exclusive events allow clients to meet people without the potential awkwardness and nervousness of a formal date. The casual and engaging atmosphere encourages participants to loosen up and enjoy themselves while in a garden, on a hayride, or at a pillow fight. They can show off their problem-solving skills during a speed date in an escape room. The events are just pure fun, and singles always come away having had a memorable time.

Photo of an escape room

One of Rose Matchmaking’s most popular events involved a three-minute speed date in an escape room.

What’s more, these singles events give the matchmakers the chance to see their clients in action and observe their conversational strengths and weaknesses. Jamie told us she once heard a woman ask someone what his favorite color is, and she later pulled the woman aside to suggest she ask more stimulating and age-appropriate questions.

The events venue has become a matchmaker testing ground, where they bring together clients who may have rejected each other’s bios, but reconsider once they meet the potential match in person.

“I like being able to interact with my clients,” Jamie said, “and give them a second chance to make a first impression.”

In terms of her matchmaking style, Jamie said she has begun rethinking how her team arranges dates and shifted gears to emphasize more engaging date spots than a coffee shop or restaurant. The matchmakers are now prodding singles to go on more interactive date ideas. For instance, if both individuals are dog people, they may recommend a date at the dog park.

“It’s whatever they feel comfortable with,” she said. “Rather than going to dinner, why not go to a wine tasting?”

Rose Matchmaking’s team is also hard at work streamlining the matchmaking system so it’s easier for clients to manage online. They’ve working on the backend to make an interface that’s both mobile-friendly and all-inclusive so singles don’t have to continually visit the office and talk to Jamie or one of the matchmakers. Instead, they can manage their matches and get feedback from their phones!

“I want to make it more accessible and easy for everyone,” Jamie said. “After all, we’re all attached to our phones these days. But hopefully they can put their phones away on the actual date.”

Adapting to the New Vocabulary of Dating

A lot of people assume that the rise of online dating has been all bad news for local matchmakers like Jamie, but she told us it’s not as simple as that. While singles have more tools to meet people at their disposal, they don’t always know how to use those tools effectively, and they sometimes need a little more guidance than a dating site or app’s interface. That’s where a matchmaker can fit in and provide a personalized alternative to online dating.

Photo of the Rose Matchmaking logo

Rose Matchmaking adapts to serve the needs of modern daters.

Rose Matchmaking has positioned itself as a stress-free dating solution for Texas singles tired of swiping and ready to meet someone worthwhile. The ghosting phenomenon in online dating has actually been good news for the matchmaking business because it has made some young, relationship-oriented singles abandon their dating profiles and start a membership with a dating professional.

Jamie said she has heard many online dating horror stories from clients — some are simply frustrated with breadcrumbing or catfishing, while others have had terrible experiences with unsavory characters. Rose Matchmaking’s clientele is getting younger all the time, and Jamie attributed this to the rising realization among 20-somethings that online dating may not be the best answer to their dating struggles.

Rose Matchmaking sees a lot more savvy daters these days as well. These new clients have done their research and understand the difference between matchmaking and online dating. They’re more educated about what modern matchmaking is and want to use Jamie’s expertise and events to bolster their love lives.

“The industry changes as online dating changes,” she said. “It has inspired so many new terms and new trends that change how we operate. But that’s part of what makes it so exciting to be a matchmaker these days.”

Rose Matchmaking Has an 84% Success Rate in Houston

Jamie has taken on many clients who said they felt frustrated, lost, and alone in the dating scene — and she has seen them turn their love lives around within a few months of working with her and attending events. As a whole, Rose Matchmaking boasts an 84% success rate in Houston. Jamie told us she recently matched up eight clients on dates, and all of them have since put their memberships on hold. “That’s unheard of,” she said. “That doesn’t happen.”

Another recent success involved one of the world’s youngest billionaires, who just got married to someone Jamie introduced him to. Of course, for the sake of the couple’s privacy, Jamie can’t reveal any names or specifics, but she said it made her happy to see her clients go on to have successful relationships. Rose Matchmaking may not be able to publish its success stories, but Jamie and her team celebrate every wedding announcement and baby photo.

Looking to the future, Jamie said she hopes to keep the momentum going and plan more dynamic events that get singles to come out of their shells.

“I’d like to offer a solution to make dating more interactive,” she said. “I don’t want dates to feel like an interview. It should be more casual and fun. That’s the direction we’re going, and everyone seems to like it.”