Matthew, 33, and Jacqui, 31, Australian
‘I’d been expecting some sort of proposal around my 30th birthday (there might have been an ultimatum given a while back!) but I didn’t expect Matt to propose on my actual birthday,’ says Jacqui Rawlinson. ‘He took me to Rivington Grill for dinner. He’d never been there before and didn’t realise how frequently the fountain show happened (every 30 minutes, for the record), so we’d only been sat at the table for 45 seconds when the music started. Thinking this was his only opportunity to propose during the show, he rushed me out onto the balcony before we’d even ordered a drink. After composing himself, he thrust the ring into my hand and, in typical unromantic Aussie style, asked: “Will you marry us?” Us? I still said yes though, and the rest is history.’
Mark, 34, and Steph, 31, Australian
‘Oh, yes it was a big surprise!’ exclaims Steph Held, recounting her now-husband Mark’s proposal. ‘I never expected Mark to proposal so casually. He got me when I was least expecting it – true Mark style. I was at home in Satwa, wearing my pyjamas, feeling very relaxed and getting ready for bed, but little did I know that the night ahead was going to involve no sleep – just lots of laughter and tears and phone calls to our friends and family in Australia. We were sitting on the couch enjoying a lovely meal prepared by Mark, and he’d dropped my engagement ring into my glass. It was only when he picked up the glass, held it up and proposed to me, did I finally see it – about 10 minutes late!’
James, 30, and Pippa, 30, British
‘I’d wanted to pop the question during our holiday in the Himalayas, but decided if I procrastinated any longer it might never happen!’ admits James Storey. ‘I spied a good deal at Qasr Al Sarab resort in Liwa, so booked an overnight stay. After a great day, we were unwinding with a game of Scrabble, so I took the opportunity to pop inside, grab the ring and put it in her glass of bubbly. I went out, glasses in hand, only to be sent inside again for a bag of crisps. When I eventually sat down, the doorbell went. It was room service. Pips is a slow drinker, so it took her 10 minutes to notice the ring and say “Yes!” We then ordered burgers, watched Kung-Fu Panda, and fell asleep to England vs Hungary. Magical.’
Valentine’s faux pas
Time Out readers reveal their less successful romantic escapades
‘Our first date was on Valentine's Day (never a good idea), but things weren’t going too well. When she went to the bathroom, I texted a friend saying what a mind-numbing experience it was. Only I didn’t text my friend, did I? I texted her by accident.’
‘My date took me for a beautiful dinner overlooking the sea. Unfortunately, he was unaware that he’d booked a seafood restaurant – fine by me, but he was allergic to everything on the menu. To say I felt guilty tucking into lobster while he prodded unenthusiastically at a Caesar salad would be an understatement.’
Forgotten to buy a present? Shame on you. Save yourself an ear-bashing by dialling one of these florists…
Either call up and place your order, or drop into the store, where the helpful staff will talk you through the options.
Park Island, Dubai Marina (800 356 937).
The Mercato branch offers surprisingly good options – perfect for ill-prepared Casanovas, who can pop in on the
way home from work.
Mercato Mall, Jumeirah 1 (04 349 6900).
This easy-to-use site features a wide range of bouquets for all budgets.
Upscale and Posh
Worth checking out just for the name, this florist delivers everything from flowers and hampers to chocolates and cuddly toys.
www.upscaleandposh.com (04 456 4141).
This high-end florist offers ‘consultations’, as well as creative bouquet designs. Worood teams up with lnterflora to ensure next-day delivery.
The Dubai Mall (04 434 2444).