Austin native and Stanford University graduate Amanda Bradford has poked the nest of the online-dating world just as it started to fall into a predictable pattern of a hot-or-not swipe game by bringing her upscale brand of match-making that she calls "playing in the big leagues" to Houston. The League , which debuted in New York City and San Francisco in , is designed to match the well-educated professional or all-around impressive single looking for their other half and it went live in Houston, Austin and Dallas Tuesday. Nearly of the city's most accomplished and ambitious bachelors and bachelorettes showed up at the Rosemont Bar on Westheimer the week before the site's launch to attend an invite-only, roof-top party to celebrate its debut into the Bayou City — but not all of those with profiles in place will get to start the online flirting right away. It's all a part of the exclusive appeal Bradford has created. The early hours of the party were populated by a majority of women, but it didn't take long for men to start streaming in with a look of slight terror and excitement on their faces as they ascended the steps and into the real-life version of the online dating pool. But the romantic-hopefuls at this party were curated to help grow the online community Bradford hopes will foster friendships based on interests and life-style as well as intimate relationships; the anti-Tinder is the underlying branding message.
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Sameera Sullivan always had a knack for figuring out which of her friends would make a good couple when she was growing up in Sugar Land. Her friends would call her for relationship advice so often that her mother joked she should be charging for her services. After graduating, Sullivan moved to Portland, Ore. Though she's based in Portland, Sullivan frequently works with clients in Houston and Dallas. But she gave Houstonia some of her dating insight for free. I am not a dating service.
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EliteSingles markets itself as a dating site for serious relationship seekers only. Promising to make finding a needle in a haystack easier by removing all the chaff, it relies on an extensive personality test to find users compatible matches quickly. But does it work — and is it worth the money? Signing up, posting a photo, and creating a profile on Elite Singles is free.