Singaporebrides | Real Weddings

October 2021

Valerie and Keith’s Surprise Proposal at The Secret Patio

Valerie thought she was heading to a video shoot giveaway with Keith, but it turned out to be a surprise proposal at The Secret Patio!

Keith Looi, 26, Analyst, dreamed up the surprise to top all surprises for his proposal to Valerie Lim, 26, Associate, and finally succeeded in making her cry for joy. Keith entered them into a fake video shoot contest, brought Valerie down memory lane with photos from their nine years together, and went down on one knee in a beautiful surprise proposal set up at The Secret Patio.

How did you first meet?

Valerie: We met nine years ago in junior college (JC) as we were placed in the same orientation group! Our first conversation started with him asking me, “Why is your wallet so big?” but I guess that was somewhat a good pick-up line as we are here nine years later, engaged and extremely excited for our big day!

Keith: Val caught my eye and I continued messaging her even after orientation, and started “jio-ing” her for study dates before we got together.

What made you fall in love with your partner?

Valerie: He matches my level of quirkiness, and he finishes all my sentences (cue “Love Is an Open Door”). But what made me fall in love with him in the first place was how selfless, kind, and caring he is.

Keith: I love how she makes me feel. She can make me feel comforted when I’m upset, excited when I celebrate my achievements, supported when I’m facing challenges, and free to completely be my quirky self. I first fell in love with her because of not only how beautiful she looked (since back in JC) but also how warm and sweet her personality is.

Tell us about the proposal.

Valerie: The proposal was a complete surprise to me! We were just chilling and going on with our usual Saturday plan with an additional “video shoot giveaway” to head to… Little did I know that this would be the most memorable day of my life.

Keith: I spent close to five months planning the entire proposal. I love planning surprises and I wanted this proposal to top all the surprises I had ever done. I used SingaporeBrides to gather ideas for the surprise plan, the vendors to use, locations to use, etc.

I decided to mask the proposal as a video shoot giveaway so that Val would not suspect anything. I then sourced for vendors and am super grateful to have worked with Wedding Authors, who were equally excited about my plan.

COVID regulations meant that there were a lot of venue restrictions. Thankfully, Wedding Authors introduced me to The Secret Patio, who were extremely helpful in planning the entire proposal. I also worked with Flora Artisan to decorate the space.

So first, Wedding Authors posted an open call on their Instagram asking for childhood sweetheart couples for a video shoot for YouTube content. I got our friend to “sabo” us and it was not suspicious because she was sourcing for her own wedding videographers. I even got Wedding Authors to do a Zoom interview with us to make it more legitimate. Eventually, we were selected for it (of course).

On the actual day, the “video shoot” started with some questions followed by walking down memory lane with photos of us in JC. Val wasn’t suspicious because Wedding Authors told us to send photos of ourselves in JC so that they could decorate the place (my friends were actually the ones decorating).

We then got to the final segment where Wedding Authors made us play some games where they gave us an envelope each and we were supposed to choose our favourite memory in JC. Of course, I rigged the game because Val’s envelope only had JC photos while mine was different. So after Val talked about hers, I then chose my favourite JC memory – and then I continued on and whipped out photos throughout the nine years of our relationship, and shared my favourite memory in each year. I ended off by saying that my favourite memory in 2021 was today, before bringing her to the main room where the decor was set up and I proposed there.

How did you both feel during the proposal?

Valerie: Overwhelmed with emotions… When we finally came to the “game section” where we were supposed to pick our favorite JC photo… and when Keith took out the second photo, I gave him a very suspicious look, but when he took out the third photo I remember laughing because I knew what was up.

This may be a very biased view but the proposal was exceptionally well-executed! I know I sound like I’m boasting but throughout the past nine years I’ve never cried tears of joy during any of Keith’s surprises, however on my proposal day, I was bawling. The build-up to the proposal, and the build-up of emotions were key to making me cry. The whole ‘photo shoot/video shoot’ and walking down the memory lane of photos before the proposal made me think back on how much we had gone through together, and all the happy memories we made throughout our relationship.

Keith: I was extremely nervous but super excited to see it all the planning come to fruition. My favourite part was when I led Val into the room and she started crying, which was my goal haha! And of course I was emotional as well, making my speech before kneeling down. Super thankful that it was all beautifully captured by Wedding Authors!

Do you have any plans for the wedding already?

Valerie: We’re using SingaporeBrides to help us plan for the wedding. Especially when we were looking for wedding venues, we looked at Real Wedding articles with all the photos of the actual wedding day at each venue. I found the credits section listing the vendors, as well as the overall wedding cost, to be very helpful!!

We’ve also confirmed my gown rental, and narrowed down florists, photographers, and videographers! Oh and not to forget my makeup artist too! I’ve been waiting for this day for the longest time and I am so excited to plan for it!

Keith: We’re both excited about wedding planning though clearly Val is the more excited one haha. Hopefully we’ll able to plan smoothly given the whole COVID situation. I used SingaporeBrides to gather ideas for almost everything since planning for the proposal. And now when planning the wedding, we are also looking to make best use of the Marriott Bonvoy x TSWF Online promotions.

The Photographer: Wedding Authors
The Engagement Ring: Jannpaul Diamonds
The Shoot Locations: The Secret Patio
The Florist: Flora Artisan
The Videographer: Wedding Authors
The Prop Rentals: Flora Artisan

Images by Wedding Authors

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Valerie and Keith’s Surprise Proposal at The Secret Patio