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Old Jul 3, 09, 9:11 am   #1
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Talking Popping "The Question" in St.Petersburg

I'm headed off to Russia tomorrow afrternoon with my (soon to be...) fiance and her family. No one knows yet but I'm planning to propose during the first few days there which will be in St.Petersburg.

We're staying in the Grand Hotel Europe right on Nevskiy Prospect and only a quarter mile form the Summer Gardens. I was planning on telling her parents and having them 'suggest' a sunset walk in the Summer Gardens where I'll pop The Question.

I know it's a bit short notice but figured there were at least one or two people here who have traveled before and wanted to see if anyone had any fantastic ideas I haven't thought of. I believe the White Nights Festival is in full swing if that offers any special opportunities -- make the "sunset walk" at midnight since it's not ever going to get dark anyway?

We're also going to be in Moscow (after 2 nights in St.Petersburg we're taking the overnight train to Moscow), Prague, Vienna, and Budapest but I don't think I can keep this thing in my pocket that long (maybe to Moscow…).

Would love to hear any thoughts!
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Old Jul 3, 09, 11:50 am   #2
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Sorry, not of any help.
Just wanted to say congrats.

And more importantly....Hopefully your future wife isn't a secret flyertalk lurker.
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Old Jul 3, 09, 3:58 pm   #3
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The bronze horseman is a traditional place for this sort of thing. Also for size and scope the plaza in front of the Hermitage is awesome.
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Old Jul 3, 09, 5:03 pm   #4
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Congrats (perhaps...surprises are sometimes unpredictable).

Surprises: hard to pull off, need a lot of planning to do well, and almost always should take place indoors (controllable), and to allow for perhaps ...anything to happen!

I suggest that you make a res at a restaurant or bar--take them all to dinner, have aperitifs...and with the Champagne or the vodka cocktails...pop the question. The Grand Europa hotel comes to mind. There are now some fantastic restaurants in St Petersburg. I suggest not on a boat, not on a river cruise, definitely. On land. Dress up. Adult...transitioning in to marriage.

Don't, whatever you do, think of having it outdoors. What if it rains or is too hot--what if she is tired and wants to go back to the hotel? What if, what if...and especially don't do it late at night when everyone is whipped.

At a restaurant--everyone will be there at the table, and if you pop the question early and get that over with, you will not have that nervous thing where she knows something is going on and wonders why you are acting weird and wonders if you are having an affair because you are so nervous and squirrely.
A dinner: it's like a play. You are at a table, people are dressed up (your girl will want to look her best, not blown around on a river bank...)...and having fun.
You get the help of the waiter/manager.
They bring out the Champagne, and just as it is poured, you say, " I have an announcement'...cheers all around, she says yes, you put the ring on her finger (or you get down on your knee, hard to pull off.)
Then you all have the most wonderful and happy dinner.
Outdoors on a bridge or beside a statue...'remember when we were all standing on the bridge and it was raining and so windy or and...' does not have such a good sound as...'the Champagne cork popped and...and then we had a fantastic dinner'...that would be happy.
Also--as a future husband--it is great to pull this off, manage it expertly, and look in control, like you are a person who is reliable and accomplished and a good provider. She will say yes. (beside a statue...no accomplishment there, anyone could do it)
I wish you well, and be sure to let us know how it turned out.
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Old Jul 3, 09, 7:29 pm   #5
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Just take the trip to Russia and save the proposal for St. Petersburg, Florida.

Part of tying the knot is growing older together, right? What better place to reinforce that than St. Petersburg?
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Old Jul 3, 09, 11:10 pm   #6
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Hmmm... I'll go against the grain here.... how accessible would Peterhof palace be at night, or at least the gardens around it.
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Old Jul 4, 09, 3:53 am   #7
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Depends on the girl, a friend of mine organised a scavenger hunt for his fiancee, and she loved it, my fiancee would have killed me if I went to that much effort (and would have exploded from embarassment, she was pretty red and choking back tears as is). For me we were in San Antonio (where she lives) so I asked at the river walk, just simple, down on one knee "will you marry me?". Use something pretty that's somewhat well known.

DO get down on one knee (I think everyone expects that) and it's good to talk to her parents first.

Also, accept that you'll be nervous, my fiancee knew I was going to ask her at some stage on my visit to her and we'd talked about marriage so it wasn't unexpected but it's still a big moment.
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Old Jul 4, 09, 5:43 am   #8
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Please continue to follow this thread in the Russia forum. Thanks for your understanding.

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Old Jul 4, 09, 1:57 pm   #9
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Originally Posted by Palal View Post
Hmmm... I'll go against the grain here.... how accessible would Peterhof palace be at night, or at least the gardens around it.

GREAT and creative idea.
However, palaces and gardens at Peterhof are closed from 5pm:

Here from official website;

Opening Hours: Daily, 10.30am to 5pm. Closed Mondays and the last Tuesday of each month.

What is it with FTers who want to propose in a park, on a walk, open-air etc.
What do you do after she says yes? Got to the nearest bar for a drink?
Continue walking? Wander around? Sit on a park bench?
I opt for a restaurant...or a bar/lounge...where you can toast, have a convivial and celebratory evening.
i hope the OP will let us know how it turned out. Did she say YES.
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