Cristina Pineda, Alessandra Conti

Photo Provided by: Matchmakers In The City

Matchmakers In The City is a nationally- established personal matchmaking firm based out of Beverly Hills, California. The dating service works with men and women who are looking for genuine and lasting romantic connections. Cristina Pineda and Alessandra Conti, sisters, and co-founders, have been dubbed “the new generation of Matchmakers” by Millionaire Matchmaker Patti Stanger. Their company began in 2012 and has since spread across the country. Claiming an 80 percent success rate, they promise clients a confidential, personal experience that includes concierge date planning, date feedback meetings, one-on-one coaching with celebrity experts and a no-swiping policy. The sisters also host a podcast called “Dating In The City”. 2bites chatted with Pineda about food, love and why the slow fade should replace ghosting. 

2bites: What made you get into matchmaking?

Pineda: We wanted to help our friends, especially people who are really good-hearted, find each other because there are a lot of people in this world who don’t have the right intentions. It was always a little dream for us to do. We combined our passion and we just started doing what we’re doing. Now we are in LA, New York, San Francisco and Washington DC. We work with people all over the country and world to help them find love.

2bites: What does “professional matchmaking” consist of?

Pineda: We’re matching people who are number one looking for love, not just a hookup. I always describe it like you’re the bachelorette on TV without the cameras and you’re meeting the most eligible bachelors or bachelorettes in the land.

2bites: What are you hoping your clients gain from an experience with Matchmakers In The City?

Pineda: There’s a place where there’s no water and you can either hand a water bottle to a child and that may satisfy them for a day but if you help the town build a well, they’ll have water for their whole lives. We’re helping our clients cultivate successful happy marriages so the divorce rates go down. We want to make sure people are going into marriage and relationships with their eyes wide open and giving them the tools to find the right person to sustain the relationship and keep the mystery alive.

2bites: What does an 80 percent success rate mean to you?

Pineda: We have an 80 percent success rate and it is so high because we care so much about each bachelor and bachelorette we work with. We give a lot of personal attention to each person because everyone is unique. It’s a matter of knowing that the journey to love does have ups and downs. Sometimes the person who you think is the right person for you may not be and you have to shake that off and see with the eyes of your heart. At the end of the day, someone may be perfect for you on paper but not have the chemistry.

2bites: How do you believe diet/food preferences play into love?

Pineda: I see that a lot of people will erect these walls and they might do it with food. Someone who’s saying… ’He doesn’t eat meat so I can’t date him.’ I know it’s a lifestyle thing but I challenge people to push past traits and characteristics that aren’t heart things. Is it more important that your future husband or wife is reliable or that they don’t eat meat? What are the top five internal qualities that you’re looking for in a significant other? You generally want to have a similar lifestyle with the person… but I do think it is restricting (to choose partners based on food preferences).

2bites: What is the Matchmakers In The City’s take on online dating?

Pineda: We do an app cleanse sometimes if it’s a problem. The dating scene has gone so far in one direction with all the apps. People aren’t connecting and you hear about this all the time and I am not knocking social media but if it’s so far in one direction, you see a lot of ugly things coming out of it. They come to us because they’re really yearning for that true authentic connection. People see that it’s empty and they are looking for something real. 

2bites: What is the best way to hit on someone in real life?

Pineda: I say be fearless with that, fearless but couple it with discerning. It takes courage. If you’ve given it thought and want to speak to that person there’s nothing wrong with that. Nowadays, people are glued to their phones and they’re not approaching people in real life… the excitement happens person-to-person and when you take that leap and take that jump and see what happens.

2bites: What is some advice you can give for what to do during the dating process?

Pineda: It’s really important to give people grace throughout the dating process and no one’s perfect and of course you don’t want to be with someone who’s mistreating you but there will be people who just find every excuse not to date someone and it ends up being you’re going to be alone if you’re so picky. Give people grace. Give people a shot. 

2bites: How do you suggest your clients put an end to a casual partner? What is your opinion on ghosting?

Pineda: We have a no-ghosting policy. If you are not into the person just do the slow fade. That’s better than a ghost-and-not-respond to someone. Do the fade by spacing out when you respond, not asking questions and being glibber but still polite. But you don’t want to be engaging. If you know you are repulsed by this person and do not want to continue then slow fade is probably a good way of doing it.

Editor’s note: This interview was edited for length and clarity.