Dubai: People 're-propose' marriage to make up for remote proposals during Covid-19 isolation

Re-proposals tend to be grand and centred around landmarks, says expert


Nasreen Abdulla

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Published: Tue 16 Aug 2022, 6:48 PM

Last updated: Tue 16 Aug 2022, 10:38 PM

Pablo’s dream of a big Dubai proposal to his sweetheart Adriana was ruined by the Covid-19 pandemic and the ensuing lockdown. “Unfortunately, the thought of a Dubai trip felt like it would never happen. I just couldn’t wait any longer and proposed to her at home,” he said. “When travel restrictions were finally lifted, I decided to go ahead with my original proposal plan.”

Pablo is one among the hundreds who re-proposed to their significant others after the lockdown was lifted, with industry experts saying they are noticing almost a 2400 per cent increase in such requests.

A re-proposal is when engaged or married couples propose to their significant others in a much more romantic or grand manner. From seeing one re-proposal a year, event organizers are now getting bookings for at least two re-proposals a month.

Pablo planned his re-proposal on a private beach with Atlantis the Palm in the backdrop and a musician serenading them with their favourite songs. Even though Adriana was expecting it, she was surprised. “When I proposed to her the first time, I told her all about the Dubai proposal and promised her that I would give her that proposal in the future,” he said. “So our whole holiday in Dubai she was expecting it, but I left it right up until the last evening to still surprise her.

Caroline Ralston, founder of event company Proposal Boutique, said that re-proposals tend to be grand and centered around Dubai landmarks. “Our clients want to make sure they pull out all the stops for their partners,” she said. “The setting is the most important aspect. 90 per cent of our clients want that big Dubai view which includes the Burj Khalifa or Burj Al Arab. For those that got engaged at home during the pandemic, 100 per cent of them want an outdoor proposal, even during the hot summer months.

These proposals do not come cheap, and Caroline put the cost at an average of Dh40,000 per proposal depending on the set up.


Lee and Susan got married just before Lee moved to Dubai. “I was going to relocate here, and I wanted her to come with me,” he said. “So, I proposed with no ring and no plan. When we moved here, I wanted to give her a big Dubai proposal.”

Proposing on the rooftop terrace of a restaurant which gave views of the Burj Khalifa and fountains, complete with balloons and candles, Lee said it was one the best evenings the couple ever had. “The venue was spectacular, with amazing views and décor. Susan had no idea at all, so it was amazing to see her reaction.”

According to Caroline, there are some trends she has noticed in the re-proposals. “Our clients are older- in their 30s or 40s and tend to get more involved in the planning phases than our first-time proposal clients,” said. “They are a lot more confident the second time around that she will say ‘yes’ so they are more relaxed.”

For Alex and Sarah, it was plain jitters that took the fun out of their first proposal. “I totally forgot about getting down on one knee,” said Alex. Hoping to get everything right a second time around, he planned a re-proposal in Dubai. Pretending they were going for a ‘dine in the dark’ experience, Alex got Sarah blindfolded before stepping into a private rooftop terrace that overlooked the Dubai skyline. “She couldn’t believe her eyes and was screaming with excitement. She already had an engagement ring, so I gifted her with a beautiful diamond bracelet for this proposal.

He couldn’t have been happier with his decision. “The best thing was that there were none of the nerves from me,” he said. “Sarah was more surprised than the first time around as she really had no idea it was coming. Everything was perfect the second time around and we both got our perfect proposal story.”

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