Lauren and Chris

Lauren and Chris's Engagement in Hamilton Island, Australia

How We Met

When people ask me where I’m from, it’s a bit of a complicated answer. Born in Detroit, Chicago 2 different times, Connecticut for high school, Pennsylvania for college (and this is without mentioning South Dakota for a year!). But my favorite slice of upbringing by far and away is Melbourne, Australia, where I lived with my family for 6 years as I was growing up. My very best friend in Australia, Ellen and I have kept our friendship alive through cross continent visits, face-timing and texts. I was even honored to stand by her side as she got married in 2013. In the summer of 2012 Ellen texted me saying that she had a friend, Chris, who was moving from Melbourne, Australia to NYC (where I have been based post-college since 2011) and that he didn’t really know anyone and it would be great if I wouldn’t mind meeting up with him for drinks.

I immediately answered yes (who doesn’t love an Aussie accent?!) and she said he would be friending me on Facebook. Chris and I chatted back and forth on Facebook messenger, exchanged numbers and agreed to meet when he arrived in NYC a few weeks later. The night I met Chris I had butterflies as I left my apartment, scouring the street corner we agreed to meet on for anyone who looked similar to his Facebook profile picture. Chris put me at ease the moment I met him and we caught up for a few hours over nachos and Coronas at Blockheads in Murray Hill. Chris and I had instant chemistry and we continued to see each other. What started off as friendship quickly escalated into dating and the rest is history!

How He Asked

We were back in Australia for a wedding and decided to tack on a vacation to Hamilton Island (island off the north east coast of Australia by the Great Barrier Reef) before we headed back to winter in NYC. One of the things I was dying to do was see ‘White haven Beach’, known for it’s white sand and accessible only by boat or helicopter.

Lauren's Proposal in Hamilton Island, Australia

On February 16, 2016 Chris and I got shuttled to the island airport where we met our helicopter pilot who would be taking us to Whitehaven. We flew above the Great Barrier reef and landed on Whitehaven Beach where our pilot set up a champagne picnic lunch for us and said he would be back in a few hours.

Where to Propose in Hamilton Island, Australia

Completely secluded on the beach, we popped the champagne and couldn’t get over how stunning the views were – not all beaches are created equal! Chris suggested going on a walk and as we were walking, I turned around to ask him something and he was down on one knee! Completely stunned I listened to him speak about how he loved the life we had built together and wanted that life to be the two of us together, forever. My answer was YES and we got to spend the next 2 hours at the beach celebrating and keeping the news just to the two of us. It was hands down the best day and moment of my life.