Win Betteridge and his girlfriend, Natalie Bos, were driving up to the Ocean House resort in Westerly, R.I., a few months ago for a romantic weekend. Win, who’s the director of business development at Betteridge jewelers in Greenwich, Conn., was so nervous, his thoughts were spinning wildly.
Why? Tucked into the back pocket of his car seat was an advance copy of Greenwich magazine’s latest issue. Inside was a seven-page advertorial for Betteridge, the 117-year-old family jewelry business that’s currently helmed by Win’s father, Terry Betteridge.
The ad featured romantic engagement stories from Betteridge customers who had also appeared in the magazine’s wedding pages, joyous wedding photos included. And on the final page: A photo of Win on a white backdrop, kneeling on one knee and offering up a ring in a Betteridge box to an unseen sweetheart.
His published proposal to Bos, three paragraphs of heartfelt sentiment—“You are my best friend, my rock, my love. I want to spend the rest of my life with you”—ended with the lines, “Natalie, I pray you will do the greatest honor of becoming my wife. I can’t promise health or happiness, wealth or glory. I can promise to always be there for you and to love you with all my heart.”
Win Betteridge going for it (!) in a published proposal—within a Betteridge advertorial—to his fiancée, Natalie Bos (courtesy of Betteridge).
Moffly Media, owner of Greenwich magazine, pitched the idea to Win, he says, “and I felt like it was a really good place to do it.”
But figuring out to get his honey bun to flip through the magazine proved challenging. “I was thinking, Okay, I have this magazine—am I just going to hand it to her? But the staff at Ocean House helped me figure out how to do it.”
Shortly after ordering up a romantic dinner in their suite, the couple opened the door to a staff member who informed them the kitchen was so busy, they would have a little wait for their food. He left a copy of the magazine with them, saying the hotel had tracked down their local magazine to read while they wait.
“Thankfully, she opened right to the page,” recalls Betteridge. Her reaction? “Over the top,” reports Betteridge, with a laugh. “I bought the most expensive bottle of wine I’ve ever bought in my life, and she came across the table so fast, she knocked it over. I never got to try it. It was a wonderful thing.”
The story is already legendary at Betteridge’s three stores: Greenwich, Palm Beach, Fla., and Vail, Colo. But the best part of the experience for the couple, says Betteridge, “is that she gets to keep the proposal forever.”