Whether you're traditional or artsy, outdoorsy or adventurous, if you're ready to pop the question, here are our picks for places to get engaged in the Hudson Valley.
TRADITIONAL AND ROMANTIC
There might not be a more romantic spot in the entire Hudson Valley than 42, a restaurant on the the top floor of the Ritz Carlton in White Plains (221 Main St., White Plains; 914-761-4242; 42therestaurant.com). The space offers stunning views of New York City as well as an intimate atmosphere, cultivated by red roses and candlelit tables.
Another option is to propose at a local winery like Brotherhood Winery (100 Brotherhood Plaza Dr., Washingtonville; 845-496-3661; www.brotherhood-winery.com) or Benmarl Winery (156 Highland Ave., Marlboro; 845-236-4265; benmarl.com), both on the Shawangunk Wine Trail. Not only do these places offer picturesque settings for your proposal, but once you get your answer, you can share a bottle of wine to celebrate.
EARTHY AND OUTDOORSY
If you're looking for a romantic yet rustic setting, the Stone Barns Center for Food and Agriculture in Pocantico Hills is the ideal place (630 Bedford Rd., Pocantico Hills; 914-366-9600; bluehillfarm.com). Located on what was formerly a Rockefeller Estate, the renowned farm has many charms, including its orchards, gardens and pastures. After you propose, you might have dinner or drinks at Blue Hill at Stone Barns. The "farmer's feast," a multi-course prix-fixe meal prepared with ingredients fresh from the day's harvest ($88-$208 per person), is a celebration in itself. Be sure to reserve in advance.
To leave civilization behind altogether, Ward Pound Ridge Reservation in Cross River offers the opportunity to commune with nature (Route 35 and 121 South; 914-864-7317; parks.westchestergov.com). Setting up camp in the bucolic reserve would ensure that your romantic gesture will be both private and memorable.
ATHLETIC AND ADVENTUROUS
If you and your significant other are the type of people who prefer watching sunsets from a mountaintop over a rooftop, then you might consider proposing atop Breakneck Ridge, a majestic mountain on the Hudson River between the towns of Beacon and Cold Spring. While the climb is fairly arduous and involves some rock climbing, the incredible vistas are well worth the trek.
If you want your proposal to feature an even more stunning view, a hot-air balloon ride will have your hearts soaring. Above the Clouds offers a Traditional Champagne Balloon Flight ($250 per person) in the lower Hudson Valley at sunrise and two hours before sunset (845-692-2556; abovethecloudsinc.com). Each flight ends with a champagne toast, a perfect way to commemorate your engagement.
FUNKY AND ARTSY
For those who are artistically inclined, Storm King Art Center is a quirky yet charming place to pop the question (1 Museum Rd., New Windsor; 845-534-3115; stormking.org). The sculpture garden is home to more than 100 sculptures by renowned artists, which are exhibited over 500 acres of lush hills and greenery. Your significant other will be so enthralled by the large-scale artwork that he or she might not even notice when you get down on one knee.
HARMONIC AND REFINED
Provide the perfect setting -- and soundtrack -- to your proposal by getting engaged at the Caramoor Center for Music and the Arts (149 Girdle Ridge Rd., Katonah; 914-232-5035; caramoor.org). The estate holds classical, opera and jazz performances in a variety of beautiful indoor and outdoor spaces, such as the Spanish Courtyard and the Sunken Gardens. If the engagement goes well, Caramoor hosts weddings, too.