Tokyo — It appeared like an extraordinary date; Dinner at an opulent restaurant adopted by a romantic stroll across the restaurant grounds. However all of the sudden, a smiling employees member appeared out of nowhere, guiding the couple via a fairytale-like gate to the steps of an English-style chapel.

As his date stood awkwardly the person went into motion, dropping to 1 knee and brandishing a tiny engagement ring field. The startled younger lady scarcely had time to mumble her assent earlier than his dad and mom stepped into view to supply their congratulations, after which, from a jumbo-sized monitor, her household joined in on the enjoyable by way of video hyperlink, shouting greetings from their residence in Taiwan.

A person, a consumer of Tokyo-based weddings, occasions and marriage proposal consulting firm Anniversaire, proposes to his girlfriend in entrance of the agency’s Western-style “chapel” within the Japanese capital.


One other mission achieved for Anniversaire, a Tokyo-based weddings and occasions firm that in recent times has leapt into the thriving enterprise of marriage proposal consulting, a area that cropped up abroad however has began to realize traction right here. In Japan, it typically includes steering males of their late 20s and early 30s via the finer factors of attending to “sure.”

Anniversaire started fielding inquiries from anxious would-be grooms beginning in 2014. The pattern was fueled by the rise of social media, mentioned Fumika Nishimura, a “proposal planner” who additionally arranges weddings for the agency in Tokyo.

“When guys go browsing to analysis ‘the place to suggest,’ they discover tons of posts by ladies displaying off their engagements in (fancy) areas,” she instructed CBS Information.

Within the Instagram-era, a easy declaration of devotion within the privateness of 1’s residence simply does not minimize it.

“We get plenty of ladies asking for re-dos,” Nishimura mentioned. One couple — who had already scheduled their marriage ceremony — forked over further charges to schedule an expensive reenactment of their engagement on the firm’s lavish marriage ceremony corridor.

“When ladies get proposed to, they wish to inform their associates,” she mentioned, including {that a} plain outdated selfie snapped in somebody’s front room is a particular no-no. Younger males, too, seem fixated on the concept that in terms of getting engaged, it is location, location, location — ideally with a dramatic night time sky.

Possibly cash cannot purchase love, however it certain helps in terms of securing the companies of a proposal planner. The barebones worth of about $200 buys simply an hour with a proposal guide, plus a 30-minute location rental charge. On the firm’s modern website in Tokyo, the romantic backdrop of selection is the chapel, a just lately renovated “church” that includes 140-year-old stained glass and royal blue carpeting. (Christian-style weddings, usually officiated by overseas actors performing the position of minister and held in buildings meant to resemble Western homes of worship, comprise the majority of such ceremonies in Japan, which is a non-Christian nation.)

A consumer of Tokyo-based weddings, occasions and marriage proposal consulting firm Anniversaire proposes to his girlfriend contained in the agency’s Western-style “chapel” within the Japanese capital.


Nishimura helps jittery suitors compose their pitches. Until it is quick and to the purpose, like “Marry me!” she advises studying from fastidiously composed notes. Some males additionally fret about which leg to kneel on (both one works, however the most effective digital camera angle is on the person’s “open” aspect.) With one significantly tongue-tied buyer, Nishimura ended up writing the entire proposal herself.

However the consumer needn’t have sweated. Greater than 2,000 proposals later, Nishimura mentioned not a single suitor has been turned down. “If the consumer is placing down money for a proposal, the couple is kind of already on the identical web page about settling down,” she reckons.

Most purchasers are prepared to shell out for extras, like renting formal put on or having the soon-to-be fiancée transported by way of stretch limo, bringing the typical worth in 2022 to virtually $1,000. That charge does not embrace the acquisition of an engagement ring, nor the modern customized of presenting fiancées with an unlimited bouquet of 108 roses, a quantity that in Japanese additionally means “endlessly.” On this case, floral eternity weighs greater than ten kilos, and prices near $400.

Purchasers can decide to have the second immortalized in a cinematic-style movie. The corporate’s on-line examples — from precise prospects — aren’t precisely “Notting Hill,” however they appear completely calibrated to activate the tear glands.

The rise of proposal consulting provides a small ray of hope to Japan’s struggling marriage ceremony trade, which incorporates lodges, eating places, marriage ceremony halls, and upscale “visitor homes” like Anniversaire.

In the course of the Nineteen Eighties, when celeb weddings acquired wall-to-wall media protection, Japanese usually indulged in garish spectacles — {couples} descending in gondolas accompanied by dry-ice clouds, loud music and lightweight shows. However a 2021 report on the restructuring of the home bridal trade by the Ministry of Economic system, Commerce and Trade discovered that the variety of {couples} tying the knot was already in decline by 2013, falling by over 12% in 2020 to simply over half 1,000,000.

Those that do marry typically spurn the circus-like weddings of the Nineteen Eighties, the report mentioned. Common spending on weddings plunged to about $20,000 in 2021.

With fewer and fewer home prospects, marriage ceremony companies are beginning to look to overseas vacationers to assist make up the distinction. Vacation spot proposal, anybody?