Link Dating

Heart and Soul

Amy Andersen is Silicon Valley’s undisputed Cupid, with lots of advice and a successful matchmaking business to spread the love from Redwood City to San Jose. 

By: Michael McCarthy, Editor-in-Chief, for Modern Luxury Silicon Valley Magazine

Photo by Annie Barnett

Twenty years ago, Amy Andersen was living in Silicon Valley and in a serious relationship with a tech professional. The Marin County native says she was astounded by the number of eligible single male friends she had in the Valley—all of whom were looking for long-term love. “While these men lamented to me about their lonely hearts, I saw a very similar trend in San Francisco with my female friends,” says Andersen. “I had networked and connected with dozens of single women through the San Francisco chapter of the Junior League. These young professional women were having no issues getting dates, but were plagued by men who had no desire to commit.” 

An idea—Linx Dating (linxdating.com)—was born. “I initially started Linx to bridge the gap between the men of Silicon Valley and the women of San Francisco,” says Andersen, who worked in private wealth management and public relations before launching Linx in 2003. “The business grew over the years and gained national and international recognition. I feel incredibly blessed that the demand is higher than ever some 18 years later, and I can’t believe that I get to match the most remarkable and dynamic men and women. I love my job.” During this month of amore, we asked Andersen about the power of her business, the secrets of finding a partner in the Valley and how to maintain the flame.    

What special skills, or gut instinct, do you bring clients who are looking for love?

It’s really about access and pattern recognition. When you’ve been around for more than 18 years, you see a lot of patterns and have access to a lot of singles. I know the area well and have a good sense of the various demographics and psychographics—those who are single and looking for long-term commitment, as well as what tends to work and not work. I’ve seen network effects benefit the business; word travels and happy clients refer other great candidates to me, so I have a great pool from which to match people to each other or to [launch] an outbound search beyond the network.

That said, no two people are ever the same, and a huge part of what I do, once I match people, is provide ongoing coaching and advice to help couples realize the great potential that could be there between them and thus to avoid pitfalls and dating quicksand that could sink what might otherwise be an amazing relationship. Those skills come from, again, nearly two decades of seeing issues come up that can plague young couples.

What are the biggest challenges to finding someone special in Silicon Valley? 

Certain challenges are not unique to Silicon Valley—busy people and lives and difficulty accessing the right pool of singles are issues in any market. But I would say that desire for anonymity and privacy—combined with impatience and ticking clocks—make volume dating on the apps very difficult and impractical. Hoping and waiting for the random introduction or lucky meeting to happen in the course of life is a nice thing that could happen, but it’s not a viable primary strategy to meet the one.

My clients have already bought into Linx, where I invest the cycles to really get to know and understand you, custom curate high-quality matches and provide a laser-focused and a highly confidential and private approach to dating to save what could be years of searching for that needle in a haystack. That said, I recommend to all clients that they should pursue multiple other channels in parallel to Linx to maximize the chances of success—whether [it means] online apps, where I’ve even helped with reviewing their profiles, or helping them think through how to put themselves in the best position to succeed by working on themselves.

What are some of the most surprising things you’ve learned recently about love and relationships in Silicon Valley? 

Although this can be true anywhere, I find it especially true in the Valley—finding a balance between traditional gender roles and the reality of life today can be tough in dating and in the transition to relationships. So can the notion of nurturing patience and communication in a world of instant gratification and the rush to judgment. Also, in a place where the tech industry and engineering provide clear and analytical answers to problems every day, relationships fall into the gray area and require more emotional intelligence. Folks here, for the most part, can be more challenged in that area.

What are some things that can doom a new match or budding relationship?

Two matches can fixate too heavily on some early road bumps in a relationship, not taking the time to look at how much good there is and to work through the issues; they figure the grass must be greener on the other side. In other words, people here are wired to give up quickly instead of working through the hard stuff that ultimately makes a relationship so much more meaningful. Also, some of my clients have a hard time turning off the career talk in the early dates, and the date turns into business networking and has the feel of a job interview. I try to help them reveal a more balanced, authentic side. Finally, both male and female clients can get hung up in the game of not showing too much interest in the other person too early, and that can kill the buzz. I encourage clients to give an affirmation, if even subtle, if they’re interested. Intuition is one thing, but people aren’t mind readers or psychics! 

How has technology, specifically dating apps, changed the calculus of dating since you launched Linx?  

The availability of thousands of matches in the palm of your hand on a phone makes impatience and judgment easier. You could be swiping away your future partner and never meet the right person because you’re searching for someone better. 

How has dating during COVID changed the delicate dance of dating and matchmaking?

This is more science and common sense than matchmaking. Obviously, going out a lot to meet random people at lounges and events is not the best practice right now. Phone calls, texts, Zooms are important early on, and that can create some pressure to address big issues in the initial stages versus just getting to know each other and building chemistry. So, I advise folks: If you feel something that could be meaningful, get on the same page with the person about vaccination and testing and see if there’s a safe way to get together to start building on the early good signs. My general advice would be start with a simple phone call to chat about COVID safety and then bridge that to an in-person [date]. It’s extremely hard for my clients and loved ones to find the sparks through a Zoom session. How can you truly feel the chemistry, read body language and truly discover if those pheromones are there? 

Your advice for sustaining a loving relationship? 

Give each other a ton of respect and latitude, try to refrain from harsh judgments, and develop an effective communication strategy from the start. Communicate as best you can. Different people have different ways of communicating, even if they don’t realize it.  

Always have integrity, and do the right thing. Be consistent with your behavior. In other words, if you’re kind, non-judgmental and friendly to your colleagues or the stranger who walks past you on the street, don’t change the way you treat your partner behind closed doors. Be consistent with the way you handle your relationships, and honor your partner with respect. 

Put in the hard work and keep tending to [a relationship] like a garden, nurture it every day. I encourage you and your partner to take a deep dive into relationship books like The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work(Harmony Books) by John & Julie Gottman, Wired For Love (New Harbinger Publications) by Stan Tatkin or Getting the Love You Want (St. Martin’s Griffin) by Harville Hendrix. Sometimes, I sometimes [encourage couples] to work with a therapist—not because your relationship is damaged, but because you want to have the tools in your toolkit to be the strongest, most resilient, loving couple possible. Always remember how lucky you are for all of the good there is, even when faced with challenges. 

This is our travel issue. What are some of your favorite romantic getaways in Northern California? 

In Napa, Solage in Calistoga (aubergeresorts.com/solage) is great to stay for a romantic weekend. Check out the new hip Pico Bar and the world-class pool, spa and amenities. I also love B Cellars (bcellars.com) winery in Oakville for the vino and food pairings, as well as the Far Niente (farniente.com) winery near Oakville for the sheer scenic beauty. There are so many amazing restaurants, but a few standouts are Charter Oak (thecharteroak.com) in St. Helena for casual gastronomique style, Brix (brix.com) near Yountville for the garden, beauty and freshness of the food, and R&D Kitchen (rd-kitchen.com) in Yountville for elegant, casual grilled fare.

In Sonoma, a favorite is the MacArthur Place Hotel and Spa (macarthurplace.com); it’s a lovely boutique hotel with a phenomenal restaurant, Layla—it’s some of the best food in Northern California, along with The Girl and the Fig (thegirlandthefig.com). Both are lovely settings for dates in relaxed settings. 

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To read the February 2022 issue in the digital edition, please go here. To read this particular article by Editor-in-Chief, Michael McCarthy, please go here.

The Cupid of Silicon Valley’s arrow strikes again!

A watercolor portrait that a client made for me.

Happy New Year faithful readers! It’s 2022 and I am thrilled to kick off this new year with a strong start. 2021 was a hugely exciting year at Linx Dating with so many successfully paired up couples and VIP clients off the market. I LOVE getting to do what I do on a daily basis for so many lucky people.

I am elated to learn of more engaged couples and multiple Linx weddings on the horizon in 2022. I’m energized to be taking a deep dive on some excellent matchmaking this week and catching up with clients and talking to a handful of prospects as well.

Not only will I be very busy with matchmaking, but I have some very creative projects in the works that I am super excited about. I find great fulfillment in being able to exercise the business side of my brain, with the intuitive and super creative side too!

Are you ready to put yourself out there this January? I always tell my clients and friends that in order to substantially increase the probability of meeting someone great, you really need to have multiple resources working in your favor all pointing towards the one goal of meeting “Mr or Ms Right.”

Tomorrow, January 2nd, in the dating world is known as “Dating Sunday.” It’s like the Super Bowl of dating essentially. Many of you who are single enjoyed your holidays with family and friends and have begun to focus on New Years resolutions to find the partner of your dreams. As such, January 2nd is historically the most-trafficked day for dating apps meaning more users flock to apps on Dating Sunday than any other day of the year.

What’s this mean for you? I think it’s smart to get on a couple of dating apps and begin the application process with a trusted matchmaker like Linx Dating. You can make up a zillion excuses for now not being a good time (not in good enough physical shape, work is ramping up, events on the horizon, or your cat chewed on your keyboard).

Whatever your ‘excuse is’, stop it. If you were sitting across from me in my Silicon Valley office, I would look at you in your eyes and see all your potential. I’d probably be able to relate on some level having done that myself back in the day but today is your day! As Tolstoy said, “Seize the moments of happiness, love and be loved! That is the only reality in the world, all else is folly. It is the one thing we are interested in here.”

My closing thoughts are for you all to keep an open mind, stay heart centric, and you never know who is out there waiting to meet you too! The possibilities are endless and the ✨magic✨ is all yours if you want to create it! Remember that you are your greatest investment. Investing into your heart and all its wondrous possibilities is yours if you want it. What are you waiting for? 🌟

💚🤍❤️‍🔥🧡💜🤍💙❤️‍🔥💚❤️🤍🤎💚🤍💜❤️‍🔥❤️🤍💚🧡❤️‍🔥🤍💙💛🤍❤️‍🔥💙💚🤍💜🤎🤍❤️❤️‍🔥🤍💜

Warmest New Years wishes,

Amy Andersen

Announcing our newest bachelor….he’s attractive, very successful, fun, and a globe trotter

We are thrilled to announce a new VIP search for a worldly and charismatic gentleman. Our handsome Caucasian 50-something year old bachelor stands 5’10”, with an easy smile, and athletic physique. He has just returned to the Bay Area from spending eight weeks in Europe and is eager to invest time in finding a partner.  His life is a great balance between a successful career, a substantial investment of time in parenting, and an adventuresome spirit that is coming roaring back as his child heads for high school.  Our bachelor has lived all around the world- from Europe to Australia and across the US. 

His very successful career today mostly involves hosting two large CEO conferences each year and sitting on a handful of boards of public and private companies that generally meet quarterly in New York, Boston, Chicago, & San Francisco. He has tremendous flexibility to enjoy life, exemplified by working remotely while taking ten-to-fifteen weeks of vacation annually.  

Our bachelor runs most days for exercise, and enjoys the outdoors, including trail running, mountain biking, and mountain climbing.  He co-leads an outdoor adventure trip with a group of 60+ friends every summer and co-leads a similar size trip to build houses for less fortunate families internationally. 

He has a large worldwide network of friends and he is genuinely curious about the world around him, embracing new cities, cultures, languages, and cuisines. He loves cooking for others, drinking great wine and entertaining on a small and large scale basis.  You will find him energetic, attentive, and thoughtful.  

Our client is best suited for a woman between the ages of 35-45 years old, any race, physically fit, and with a heart of gold.  He thinks he connects best with women who have similarly invested substantial time into their kids, and he appreciates feminine women who are in shape, care about their appearance, and who are globally-oriented, cultured, and easy-going.  

His dream is to find a partner who has some control over her schedule, and assuming she has child(ren), a healthy custody situation because he wants to be able to spend time with a partner and kids for extended periods of time overseas life adventures! 

If you or anyone you know might make a great match for our exceptional bachelor, please email Amy at amy@linxdating.com . There are zero fees for qualifying candidates.

And another VIP off the market and exclusive!

This week has proven to be a very exciting week with couples declaring their love for one another. VIP 9 is officially off the market and totally in love with his match! This Linx client is 35 years old and what I admired most about him when I interviewed him was his motto in life is that he is “earning to give” – earning money to eventually give back to society one day. Very few people think like this – especially in Silicon Valley.

The VIP 9 description will be removed and archived since he is totally off the market- for good. What I am particularly proud about is that this was his very first match through Linx Dating and his now girlfriends first introduction too! As a professional matchmaker, there are many couples I have put together where they are one another’s first match. Talk about hitting the ball out of the ballpark and beyond epic success on so many fronts!

My client and I worked extremely closely together throughout the 4 month journey of representing him. Even before we met in July 2021, my client had done a lot of work on himself and knowing what he wanted to find in a dream match. He turned to Linx knowing that the caliber of members are serious “go getters” and marriage-minded. He also knew going into this experience that he wouldn’t be dealing with flaky women who don’t show up for dates or individuals who seem “one foot in” and “one foot out” of the process. We openly discussed what he desired and I was so excited to get started right away!

Like many VIPs, I wanted to publish his search on the website in the hopes that “Ms Right” might read it and apply to meet him. The very first individual I presented to him as a match candidate ended up being his now girlfriend. She was everything he hoped for “and more!” The woman I found for him was intelligent, entrepreneurial, possessing strong family values, and culturally aligned.

I made sure to catch up with him most weeks through regular phone calls and gave him my dating tips, guidance, and wisdom to make sure he was approaching this budding relationship intelligently and also understanding dating from a “holistic” and females perspective.

When he knew she was “the one” he wanted to potentially spend the rest of his life with, I offered to help set up a sweet, romantic evening where he could formally ask her to be his girlfriend. I arrived to the location, ordered a chilled champagne on ice for the couple, decorated the table with flowers, and had ordered a customized puzzle from Etsy weeks in advance that I wrapped in a box for his leading lady. I left the gift wrapped box with puzzle inside on the table and they arrived for dinner. Thinking it was just a nice dinner out, she was so happy and surprised to find their table covered in rose petals, chocolate heart candy, and a very mysterious box!

The waiters poured them bubbly and I spied from another room capturing video footage (for their eyes only.) My client handed her the box and she started to put the puzzle pieces together…..After about 6 minutes (I know since I was recording it on my iPhone lol), it said “Name, will you be my girlfriend?”

Of course she said YES and gave him a huge hug…at that point, Amy “the spy” matchmaker who was filming them, slinked away and left….maybe a tear being shed. Side note, apparently the waitstaff thought they got engaged. The very next day, my client emailed me to thank me for everything I had done to help him on this journey. Now that they are exclusive and it is so crystal clear that they want to spend their lives together, they are already discussing openly how they want to raise their children. 🙂

These are the opportunities and moments I treasure. Working with two spectacular human beings who would not have met otherwise. Two people who are so clear in the vision of “who” they want to meet. My client being so very receptive to my guidance and advice along the process of working with me and knowing that I might deliver some tough love along the way. My job never stops once the match is made. That’s truly where the work begins…..the guidance, coaching, constant communication….to the point of exclusivity and for many, engagement and marriage.

Linx Featured in Modern Luxury’s Dynamic Women Issue