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Russian Men Turn to Service of Romance Consultant

Published: February 13, 2013 (Issue # 1746)



  • One of the services offered to men wishing to sweep their beloved off their feet is a Cinderella-style horse and carriage.
    Photo: APOTEO SURPISE

Russian men are among those eagerly making use of the services of a French entrepreneur offering a helping hand in making unforgettable romantic gestures.

Proposing marriage from outer space or declaring your love with a shower of 1,000 red roses falling onto the deck of a yacht during a romantic cruise in Paris are just a couple of the ways that French company ApateoSurprise can help men to surprise their sweethearts on Valentine’s Day, and Russians are among the most active users of these services.

“Russians can really do amazing things when they are in love!” said Nicolas Garreau, the founder of ApoteoSurprise.

“They usually choose a private dinner cruise on the Seine, with 1,000 red roses suddenly falling from the sky when the yacht stops at the Pont des Arts, the most romantic bridge in Paris,” he said.

“Russians are also fond of a scenario that includes hundreds of candles spelling out a special message of love in the air as they arrive at a magical French abbey by chauffer-driven car. Another popular scenario is a candlelit dinner at a castle with a private fireworks display that includes a giant red heart suddenly blazing forth,” he said.

Unsurprisingly, such bold demonstrations of emotion come at a price. A dove delivering a declaration of love to a hotel costs 390 euros ($521), while for about 16,000 euros ($21,395), lovelorn romantics can splash out on a giant white heart written in the sky above Paris by small aircraft.

Although less inventive — or less prosperous — men may consider their more traditional proposals unforgettable, 80 percent of women say that they are disappointed with the way their lovers choose to propose, according to information from ApateoSurprise, whose mission is to ensure that their methods will be anything but disappointing.

“Since 2006, when I launched my agency, I’ve planned about 1,000 romantic surprises and marriage proposals, and I would say that the most popular package among clients is a one-hour limousine tour with champagne and chocolate,” said Garreau.

“The limo stops at the Eiffel Tower, the tower sparkles, and all of a sudden, a personalized message appears on a giant ultra-bright LED screen. Women cry almost every time. And of course the message can be displayed in Russian,” he added.

Women rarely know beforehand that their other half has called on the services of a Parisian expert in romance. But Garreau does not usually interfere in the process, or even help the client in choosing a fitting scenario. He believes that the client knows which form of expression suits their particular situation best.

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ALL ABOUT TOWN

Tuesday, Sept. 16


Lenexpo plays host to Tekhnodrev, a three-day convention that focuses on the woodworking industry in Russia. Promoting the latest technologies and trends, the event features not only exhibitors from some of Russia’s largest woodworking companies but representatives of the forestry industry, who will have their own coinciding forum.


Parlez-vous français? We don’t here at The St. Petersburg Times but that doesn’t mean you can’t. Join the British Book Center’s French Club meeting this evening at 6 p.m. in their location near Technologichesky Institut metro station.



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