I love to write stories, and with today being my husband’s birthday, facebook of all things reminded me that it is also the day we were engaged. Pete proposed to me on his 30th birthday, what a swell guy!
It was the ‘biggest’ birthday we had celebrated together, the big 3-0! It was on a Tuesday, and Pete insisted we celebrate on the actual day. We lived in Upper Kirby in Houston at the time, we went out a lot so a special birthday would be no different.
Pete said he wanted to take care of all the evening plans, which I was okay with but was secretly pining to know all of the ‘ins and outs’! He wouldn’t divulge a single detail of the dinner locale or late night drink plans. He even took the ‘what to wear’ puzzle piece out of the mix for me, by purchasing a gorgeous Audrey Hepburn-esque black shift dress the week before, seemingly for no reason at all. Again, fine by me (I’m a sucker for prezzies)!
We got all gussied up and made the short drive downtown, and pulled up to a hotel I’d driven past and noticed but had never stepped into. Hotel Icon. He then explains that we are having dinner at the restaurant inside, Line & Lariat, which he described as an american style steak house that also served wild game. I love trying new places so this revelation pleased me very much.
Valeted, stepped inside, and much to my delight was met with a splendid view of marble columns and ornate ceiling carvings. Having a little taste of Texas as the chosen decorum, a few of the bar chairs were covered in animal skin, which is not either of our styles but somehow it all flowed together quite nicely. There were gigantic antique bank vaults behind reception, and Peter seemed to know the whole story about them. This did not tip me off at all. I’m just excited about enjoying a celebratory dinner out.
We are seated, the table is well set, we order a seafood appetizer and casually sip on cocktails. A nice start to an epic night that I had no idea was coming! We order dinner, I usually opt for fish, a red snapper I think, and Pete goes all in and orders wild boar. I’m not sure if I will be asking for a bite of that quite yet. I didn’t notice at the time but Pete insists our waitress (who is in on the engagement secret) keeps staring at our table. I am clueless.
We are having a lovely night as expected, I even snap this photo and post it to facebook:
It’s getting late in the evening, we are considering taking a walk or catching a showing at our favorite theater around the corner, but then Pete suggests going up to the rooftop of Hotel Icon where they have a patio bar with a great view. The waitress whole heartedly agrees with the decision and instructs us to take our glasses of wine with us. I’m just going with the flow, sounds great!
She snaps a picture of us both before we go, see how unassuming I look?
We make our way to the bank of elevators, my heels click as we saunter to our next destination. We arrive on the top floor, walk around a couple of corners to what seems to be just another hotel room door but Pete says that the bar is ‘through here’. Okay, sounds good to me! So so so not realizing what is going on. He opens the door for me and I am ushered in to sense candlelight, flowers upon flowers, a bubble bath and not to mention to marvelous vintage style room. Beautiful. But I am STILL clueless(!).
Obviously it’s not a bar but I assume that we’re just staying the night, fun! I turn to Pete and he is down on one knee with something sparkly in his hand. Oh, that’s for ME!? This is OUR night! I get it now! “Allison McLendon, yadda yadda yadda (truly can’t remember I was in shock) will you marry me?”. Yes, of course was all that came to mind after that.
We waited the whole next day to tell people, making calls that evening. It was our little secret, savoring the moment. I highly recommend this by the way! We took these pictures at home the next night to serve as our announcement for family and friends.
Our dreamy NYC wedding was set in no time for autumn. I knew exactly what I wanted but was still surprised/delighted with the results, the best things happen that way in my opinion.
On top of Hotel Icon a month later for our engagement photos, this locale was a no brainer.