Does London mean something special to you as a couple, and would you like to propose to your intended there? This vibrant city truly offers all manner of possibilities. To get you started in London, we call in to see Aline Vandecasteele, founder of London-based event design agency Another A Story. Aline takes you to some highly original places in London which are perfect for when you want pop that question!
Aline’s favorite spots for proposing
1. In a boat on the Serpentine, a lake in Hyde Park
Aline launches into: “I always find water very romantic. There’s a lake in the middle of London’s Hyde Park – the Serpentine. During the summer, you can rent out a boat here for the two of you, and splash about on the calm water. Proposing to your intended on such a romantic occasion, while floating along and pondering your future together…. Wonderful, right?”. Keeping with the water theme, Little Venice and the South Bank of the Thames are also incredibly romantic hot spots when popping the question.
2. A romantic bench in Notting Hill
Aline herself lives in Notting Hill, and is totally in love with the place:“I am incredibly happy here. Notting Hill is absolutely the most beautiful place in the world for me. And with SO many people having seen the film “Notting Hill”, with Julia Roberts and Hugh Grant… Remember that final scene, where they’re cuddled up together on a park bench in Notting Hill? You might decorate a local park entirely with garlands of lights, for example. You might bring a picnic, and whip out a glass of champagne. An intimate get-together: the perfect time to take out that ring and ask your intended to marry you.”
3. Delight in Kew Gardens
“Kew Gardens is also one of the most beautiful places in London. At Christmas, when the park is all decorated with lights, it is particularly delightful walking through these ‘Royal Botanic Gardens’ together,” says Aline. Other wonderful outdoor locations for going down on one knee include Kyoto Garden in Holland Park and Mayfield Lavender Farm.
4. Adventure Park
For the more adventurous couple, Aline also has another great idea: “Are you a couple who relish a certain challenge? There are special centres in London where you can put yourselves through a series of physical and mental challenges together. Once you have endured all the tasks together and come through triumphant, that engagement ring might suddenly appear as if from nowhere… You will overcome all the challenges of the future together, too!“
5. Skyline views
“Two’s company, yet stuck in the middle of the London city bustle? Then the Shard and the London Eye are splendid locations to ask that special question. The highest view of London is from the top of the Shard, on floors 68, 69 and 72. Spectacularly beautiful, as you can see Tower Bridge, the winding River Thames, Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre and St Paul’s Cathedral. While your intended is soaking up the view, you get a private moment to whip out that ring… Also, iconic Ferris wheel the London Eye can provide some perfect us time as a couple – all alone in your private ‘pod’.”
Celebrating in London together
If the proposal goes well, you might want to celebrate your engagement! London has infinite possibilities on that score. Book a table at a trendy restaurant or hip cocktail bar, celebrate as an intimate couple or invite your closest friends and family along to join you. There’s something for everyone, and Aline has even suggested her favourite spots.
1. Louie London
Aline suggests enthusiastically: “One of THE places to go after you propose is Louie London. This glamorous venue with its trendy décor is familiar even to royalty. The food there is French-Creole, and I can definitely tell you it’s absolutely amazing!”.
2. Casa Cruz
As a fan of Notting Hill, it’s no surprise that Aline also knows of somewhere in this happening neighbourhood where you can celebrate your engagement in style: “Casa Cruz is an intimate, warm and elegant restaurant tucked away in the backstreets of London’s Notting Hill. They also have a roof terrace. The perfect setting on nicer days, then, to celebrate your engagement with your intended, or your nearest and dearest.”
Top notch gastronomy? There’s that, too. Aline: “Restaurant sketch is trendy not just for its delightful instagrammable décor with ‘enchanted forest’, chairs with ballet shoes and bright pink sofas, but also for its delicious food. In fact, the Lecture Room and Library at sketch has even been awarded two Michelin stars!”.
4. The Pelican
“The Pelican is the ideal place for couples seeking a rather homely atmosphere to celebrate their engagement in with friends and family. It’s really cosy, and the open fire crackling in the middle of the restaurant is the perfect accompaniment to a pleasant dinner,” says Aline.
5. Cocktail bars
There are also plenty of trendy cocktail bars in London, of course. Aline is indeed a fan, as she finds it hard to choose between some of her favourites: “London totally has the absolute best cocktail bars. The lounge at the Chiltern Firehouse hotel, for instance, serves the most sensational cocktails. What’s more, it’s also a real ‘celeb hotspot’, so who knows, you might run into someone famous there. Mr Foggs is also a highly original venue, because you’re supposed to tell a story first as you go in: the story of your early engagement would go down perfectly there. Also, the Connaught Bar is a true classic among cocktail bars.”
About Aline Vandecasteele
Aline Vandecasteele, from Kortrijk, is currently conquering the New York, London and Paris scenes with her event design and production company Another A Story. There is certainly no lack of ambition in this bright young thing, whose headquarters are in New York. Another A Story handles event organisation and management for various high-end brands including Dior, Christian Louboutin, Laura Mercier, …