NYC Wedding Proposal Ideas – The best places to propose in New York City / the Hamptons / Fire Island

29 Mar 2023


Updated 1/25/24 by Sarah Merians

Romance is in the air yet again…where will you get engaged this year?

Here are two more fun surprise proposals to share for inspiration.

We are sharing this great article again as Christmas, New Years and Valentine’s Day seem to be very popular for surprise marriage proposals!

These two new marriage proposals happened at the end of last year in Manhattan.


Lauren & Evan – Evan and his mom (longtime clients of ours) reached out to Sarah as soon as he knew he was proposing to Lauren.  His idea was to somehow get her up to their apartment building rooftop for his moment to pop the question.  He had arranged with a florist to decorate the corner of the rooftop with rose petals to create a romantic scene.  He put out photos of the two of them and had cold champagne chilling for the celebration toast after she “said yes!”.  After a few photos with Sarah, they headed over to Avra on the East Side of Manhattan where their families were waiting to celebrate!  This proposal was literally on top of the world!



Louis & Emily – Not only does Louis have the “key to Emily’s heart” …he also has the “key to the very private Grammercy Park”.  It was here that he proposed to Emily.  We had captured Louis’s Bar Mitzvah and were now being asked to capture another milestone in his life.  We love next gen and our client’s loyalty.   Our photographer Sheila met Louis’s sister in the park and captured her setting up his romantic scene for his proposal.  Sheila was hiding amongst the trees and flowers to capture Emily’s surprise.  Once the proposal had happened and of course Emily “said YES!” their parents and siblings arrived at the park for hugs and laughter.


Whether you shout out your love and devotion on a rooftop overlooking Manhattan or in the private and magical Grammercy Park or another unique location… we are here to capture your amazing moment!

Congratulations to the newly engaged couples who will be getting married this year and in 2025.  We hope you were one of those lucky Christmas or New Years ladies!

 Here’s to love and marriage!

Original Article:

Spring is here and love is in the air!  And so, we’ve been inspired to share some of the amazing surprise marriage proposals we have been hired to capture over the past few years!

We are in the business of “Capturing Life at Its Best”, and we love being behind the scenes as our couples propose and say, “I do”.  It is incredibly exciting to be involved with the wedding planning during this initial stage and share in their love and excitement very early on.

Featured below are eight surprise proposals.  Two were captured in Fire Island, one in the Hamptons, one at The Pierre Hotel, one at Butter Restaurant, and three at Iconic Manhattan locations.


Ali & Andy – Andy started planning early on with Sarah his ideas and concept for his Fire Island proposal.  Sarah being a Fire Islander and knowing the family for years was able to really help.  Sarah photographed Ali’s Bat Mitzvah and her parent’s wedding!  So being involved with this upcoming wedding so early in the process was super exciting and meaningful for her!  The surprise began on a rooftop at her parent’s Fire Island home in Seaview and ended with a champagne toast on the water at sunset.  It was a family affair for sure.  Fire Island is a magical place and added to the intimacy of the proposal for this couple.  Ali was so surprised and, of course, said “yes”!!



Carey & Carl– Check out this incredible surprise proposal in Seaview, Fire Island a few years ago.  Carl planned every detail from proposing at a gazebo inland, to a picnic celebration on the beach.  Carey’s mom worked with a local florist to decorate and set up the gazebo with rose petals along the path.  Carl took Carey’s hand and walked her barefoot of course into his romantic proposal.  Carey’s mom then headed to the beach while Carl was popping the question amongst a garden of roses and purple plants. Fire Island is a magical place and added to this fairytale proposal.  Fire Island is a special place for this couple and sharing with family at their summer home was so special.



Carolyn & David – David had a “picture perfect” day for his surprise Hamptons proposal.  Our photographer Sheila texted David when she arrived at Peter’s Pond Beach in Sagaponack.  The plan was to follow them as they walked hand in hand down the beach.  Sheila practically had to run to keep up with their long legs! Ha.  We love how a seagull flew by and witnessed David drop to one knee and ask Carolyn to marry him.  It couldn’t have been more romantic!  Both moms were behind the secret planning, and we love their “fist pump” after the proposal.  Parents and brothers arrived for the popping of some champagne and celebrating.  You can’t beat ocean views, waves, sunshine, and beach for a marriage proposal.




Tracy & Matthew– Sarah planned months before with Matthew his Manhattan restaurant proposal with family and friends.  Matthew had reserved a private room at Butter in the city for his surprise proposal.  The moms got together to decorate the restaurant ahead of time with balloons and champagne and was ready to po the cork once Matthew arrived and proposed to Tracy.  Of course, she “said yes” and they entered a room with twenty guests for a surprise dinner and celebration.  It was a family affair and the best way to start a life together for this couple.  Sarah loved capturing this event as she loves family and family celebrations.  Great restaurants with delicious food and wine can we another way to propose.



Lindsay & Sam– It was a snowy winter day in Central Park for this proposal. Our photographer Sheila followed Sam and Lindsay for a while as they strolled and chatted in Central Park.  Moments later Sam dropped down on one knee to propose to Lindsay by Bethesda Fountain in Central Park.  This classic background is so beautiful for any surprise marriage proposal, Winter, Spring, Summer or Fall!  After the proposal, they were joined by their families at Tavern on The Green for a celebratory brunch!




Stephanie & Seth– Another great place for a surprise marriage proposal is on top of a building or on a roof deck!  This proposal was planned very carefully by Seth who wanted to propose to his girlfriend at the top of one of the tallest buildings in Manhattan – One World Observatory.  It was tricky for our photographer Chris to find this couple in the crowds and make it in the same elevator as them up to the observatory deck.  It was well worth it!  Check out Seth dropping to one knee in a sea of tourists to propose to Stephanie.  She said “yes” with a golden sun behind her, and they felt on top of the world for this incredible surprise proposal.




Jennifer & Travis– We love this surprise proposal on the ice skating rink in Rockefeller Center!!! This couple flew into town from Texas for a weekend in New York City during the Christmas season!  Jennifer had no idea what Travis had planned for her that day.  Sarah got to the rink early and texted Travis when she arrived.  He skated to the gold sculpture for a selfie with his girlfriend so Sarah would know which couple they were!  Even with a reference photograph ahead of time…winter coats and hats made it difficult to recognize the couple and keep track of them amidst all the skaters!  Once spotted …Sarah captured them skating hand and hand as fun upbeat music played at the rink.  The outdoor air and music created such a festive environment for this surprise proposal.  The music stopped , the ice cleared, and Travis dropped to one knee for his proposal.  Stephanie had to take her gloves off to put on the ring!!  This one took A LOT of planning but was well worth it!




Brittany & Uri– Uri reached out to us after finding us on Google.   He was flying to Manhattan from Las Vegas to surprise Brittany with a marriage proposal.  The couple planned a romantic weekend and our photographer, Dahiam first joined the couple at the restaurant in The Pierre Hotel, where they were having a romantic meal.  Once done the couple strolled around the hotel before Uri dropped to one knee for a complete surprise proposal to Brittany!  Classic Hotels in Manhattan are a great place to pop the question for out of towners and native new Yorkers alike!

Hope some of these fun ideas will inspire you as you decide where to propose to your bride or groom to be in the months and years ahead.

Congratulations to all these wonderful couples who are now part of the Sarah Merians family forever! xo