Nearly 10 million fans of The Bachelor tuned in Monday night to see Ben Higgins propose to Lauren Bushnell with a $100,000 vintage-style engagement ring.
The stunning platinum ring features a 3-carat emerald-cut center stone surrounded by a halo of round diamonds and is flanked by two stepped baguette diamonds. The hand-crafted ring by designer Neil Lane has an openwork gallery and a diamond total weight of 4.6 carats.
An insider told E! News that Higgins chose the vintage look because it reflected his “old-fashioned values.”
The 26-year-old Higgins, a software sales rep, had been emotionally torn between bachelorette contestants Bushnell and Joelle “JoJo” Fletcher. In the previews of the 20th season finale, Higgins was seen telling both women that he loved them.
But, in the end, it was Bushnell, a 24-year-old flight attendant, who stole his heart. The disheartened Fletcher can’t be called a loser, though, because she was named as next season’s “Bachelorette.”
All eyes were on Higgins and the diamond engagement ring in Monday night’s dramatic climax of The Bachelor.
“I came into this honestly feeling unlovable, that I couldn’t be loved or that I was never going to find that person to love me fully,” Higgins said in the lead up to his marriage proposal. “And then we go through this experience — a journey that’s full of goodbyes.”
He continued, “Lauren, I never want to say goodbye to you. I want to wake up every morning and kiss you on the face. I want to go to bed at night and know that in the morning I’m going to wake up to the most beautiful woman that I’ve ever laid eyes on. My desire from here on out is to live for you, commit to you, love you, hold you, kiss you a lot. Lauren, I want to spend the rest of my life with you.”
Then he took a deep breath, sighed and pulled a ring box from his breast pocket.
Holding her hands to her face, Bushnell cried as Higgins got down on one knee and asked for her hand in marriage.
“Lauren, will you marry me?”
She responded, “Ben! Yes, of course! This is the happiest day of my whole life.”
He placed the impressive ring on her finger and the couple embraced.
Higgins and Bushnell taped the finale weeks ago and their engagement had to be kept under wraps. But, by Tuesday, the couple was interviewed during a live segment on ABC’s Good Morning America and found themselves on the cover of People magazine.
“I’m looking forward to just starting a normal life,” Bushnell said. “We’ve been engaged, but secretly, for the last few weeks and so I’m excited to go on a date.”
Screen captures via ABC; Twitter/Elon Gale.