As February is the month of love, and is one of the most popular times of the year for marriage proposals, we’ve teamed up with bespoke romantic events planning company, The Proposers, and some of London’s top restaurants, to provide you with the ultimate list of Do’s and Don’ts for proposing in a restaurant so you can make sure your proposal is one to remember.
1. Jean-Francois Bissor, General Manager at Gillray’s Steakhouse & Bar, said: “Do tell the restaurant you plan to propose. They will help it go as smoothly as possible and may even have some suggestions, such as lighting and music, to make your proposal even more special.”
2. Daisy Amodio, founder of The Proposers, said: “Do choose the right location – think of the location and weather beforehand. There may be an event happening in the restaurant that could ruin your proposal, or it may be raining on the day, so you don’t want to propose in an outside space. You should always have a back-up plan, just in case! Choose a location that you’re happy to return to for years to come.”
3. Atul Kochhar, Chef Patron of Benares, said: “Do make a reservation. It would be a disaster to turn up to your favourite restaurant on the night that you plan to propose and not be able to be seated. Avoid unnecessary added stress by planning ahead to ensure your night goes as smoothly as possible.
4. Andrea Haldane, Client Relations Manager at Bookatable said: “Do ask to be seated in a spot with a view. At a restaurant, Maître D’s will be more than happy to help with your proposal so ask to reserve the best table ahead of the day so that you have the greatest atmosphere and views. The celebrations will be much more special in a top spot rather than if you are seated behind the stairs, for instance.”
5. Daisy Amodio, founder of The Proposers, said: “Do include friends and family. You may want everyone you know there to celebrate but first you need to make sure you… a) you know that the answer will be a YES, and b) Practice what you want to say: just saying those four famous words is pressure enough, without worrying about your nearest and dearest being present.
6. Lisa Southgate, General Manager at Orso, said: “Do always wait for dessert to propose. Otherwise, you might not get to finish your meal if it all goes pear shaped At least you won’t go hungry.”
7. Andrea Haldane, Client Relations Manager at Bookatable said: “Do know the preferences of your partner. Your proposal should be about making your partner happy so don’t go to your favourite restaurant if your partner has indicated that they don’t like it, or go to a meat restaurant if your partner is a vegetarian. Doing so, will give the impression that you have not put much thought into making the proposal all about them.”
8. Daisy Amodio, founder of The Proposers, said: “Do get down on one knee – its tradition: go for it! Not to mention, it’ll make an amazing photo.”
1. Andrea Haldane, Client Relations Manager at Bookatable said: “Don’t be cliché. If you want your proposal to have an impact on your partner, think of ways to be creative in the restaurant. Have a waiter bring out a vintage champagne from the day or year you met and then have him hand her the bottle revealing the word ‘will you marry me?’
2. Lisa Southgate, General Manager at Orso, said: “Don’t choose red wine as a drink to drop your ring into. Always ask the staff to make sure it is a glass of champagne or prosecco as we wouldn’t want anyone choking (for the wrong reasons) during a special moment.”
3. Andrea Haldane, Client Relations Manager at Bookatable said: “Don’t expect everything to go as you plan. You could plan meticulously but with just half an hour to go receive a call from your other half to say they have been pulled into a last minute meeting. Be prepared to have a tweak to your plans and look into late-night restaurants and bars, whilst keeping the number of any third parties involved close to hand.”
4. Daisy Amodio, founder of The Proposers, said: “Don’t propose without a ring. If you’re not sure which ring to buy, then propose with something temporary, and go shopping together after the proposal. They’ll be wearing the ring for the rest of their lives, so you need to get it right, but having nothing to put on the ring finger simply won’t do!”
5. Andrea Haldane, Client Relations Manager at Bookatable said: Don’t forget to ask for all the staff to keep the secret. If you are going to propose in a restaurant, make sure you speak to the Maître D to inform all to the staff so no one working accidently congratulates your partner before you have had the chance to pop the question.”
6. Andrea Haldane, Client Relations Manager at Bookatable said: “Don’t get too drunk. Dutch courage is one thing, but don’t drink so much that you let the cat out of the bag before the planned moment, especially if you have organised for a band – or something special – as part of the big moment.”
7. Daisy Amodio, founder of The Proposers, said: “Don’t think it’s all about the ring – The budget shouldn’t just be for the ring. The most important part is securing a yes: so make it special. An amazing location and thinking about the story will go further than breaking the bank.”
8. Daisy Amodio, founder of The Proposers, said: “Don’t wait until the last minute. Sure, it can be done but we wouldn’t recommend it. You only get one chance to do this, and your partner’s worth the effort, so take your time! A ring can be upgraded: a story can’t.”