Renee and Matthew

Engagement Proposal Ideas in Annecy, France

How We Met

Matt and I met on November 9, 2013. We had matched on a Tinder about a month prior, and planned to meet in NYC for the first time (he lived in Long Island and I in Westchester – NYC was in the middle). He offered to meet me at Grand Central Station because I’m not keen on navigating the city (I know, NYC is a grid, it should be easy – but I just can’t do it!). We started the night having a couple of beers and good conversation at McSorely’s Ale House. Matt’s a history buff and I remember listening to him tell me all of the interesting history behind this bar. We went on to have burgers and fries for dinner, found our way into an underground sake bar where we carved our names in the wall, and ended the night at the top of the Empire State Building. Nothing about the date was planned, we just went with the flow and had a wonderful time. Being together and exploring just felt so natural and easy. Almost 7 years later and we still reminisce on this night!

How They Asked

We were on day two of our road trip through France in July of 2019. We had just arrived in Annecy (an alpine town in southeastern France – a true gem, straight out of a storybook). The second day of travel, especially with a time zone change, is always a challenge. I remember being a grump because I was tired, sweaty (this was right at the end of the European heatwave), hungry, etc., but once we pulled into this town, all of those feelings vanished. I remember Matt and I look at each other, then at the crystal-clear blue water, picturesque snow-capped mountains, and winding cobblestone streets. We just stood and stared, completely in awe of what stood before us. We checked into our Airbnb, freshened up a bit, and headed back out – eager and ready to explore. Matt had told me of a nearby bridge at the threshold of Annecy that had a sweet legend tied to it. It was said that if two lovers kiss in the middle of this bridge, they will stay together forever. I remember immediately saying “cheesy!”, but Matt and I both know that I’m a total sucker for just that type of thing. We had planned to have a passerby snap a photo of us kissing on the bridge, leaving the fate of our relationship to fall into the hands of small-town folktale.

Marriage Proposal Ideas in Annecy, France

We strolled along the swan-filled canal towards Pont des Amours, the strong afternoon sun upon us. I remember the beads of sweat on my forehead, feeling my foundation and lipstick melt right off my face. The thought of taking a photo felt like the very last thing I wanted to do. I remember Matt reassuring me that I looked beautiful and that we’d snap a quick picture and be on our way. When we arrived at the center of the bridge, Matt found a lovely French woman and asked if she would take our photo. I turned around to put my satchel down on the ground beside me, and when I turned back around, he was down on one knee. It was the perfect moment. I remember being speechless, covering my mouth in complete euphoric shock. The only thing I could manage to make myself do was nod my head in joyous agreement. I truly felt the magic of the bridge at that moment, it was like something out of a fairytale movie. It was enchanting and all-consuming. The woman (who was a stranger and NOT a paid photographer) quickly thought to turn the camera on video mode and recorded the entire proposal! It took a little while, but when I regained feeling in my legs, we got some ice cream, rented a motorboat, and drove it out to the middle of the lake, the French Alps as our backdrop. Matt filled me in on some sweet details, like how he was so nervous to go through airport security with the ring in fear that TSA would take it out and spoil the surprise. How he discreetly asked the woman who took our photo to “hang with him for a sec”, hinting that something special was to come. How my sister suggested he purchase a flat ring box, so it wouldn’t protrude from his pocket. All of our families were in on it, too!

Our Video