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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 Valentines 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, Ive 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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Thursday, Nov. 27


The Customs and Transportation Committee for AmCham meets this morning at 9 a.m. in their office on Ulitsa Yakubovicha.


Tickets are still available for local KHL team SKA St. Petersburgs showdown with Siberian club Metallurg Novokuznetsk tonight at 7:30 p.m. in the Ice Palace outside the Prospekt Bolshevikov metro station. Tickets can be purchased on the teams website, at the arena box office or in their merchandise store on Nevsky Prospekt.


Celebrate one of Russian literatures most tragic figures during Blok Days, a two-day celebration of the 134th anniversary of the poets birthday. The tragic tenors work, which led to writer Maxim Gorky to hail him as Russias greatest living poet before his death in 1921, will be recited and meetings and discussions about his contributions to the Silver Age of literature in St. Petersburg will be discussed in the confines of his former residence.



Friday, Nov. 28


Join table game aficionados at the British Book Centers Board Game Evening. Held every Friday at 5 p.m., aficionados and amateurs alike can come take part in a variety of different games that test ones intellect and cunning.



Saturday, Nov. 29


Cats, dogs, birds, rodents and reptiles are just some of the things that will walk and crawl at Lenexpo convention center this weekend as part of Zooshow, a two-day exhibition featuring not only mans best friends but a four-legged fashion show, as well as a food fair that will help pet owners find out more about which kibbles are best for their hungry pets.



Sunday, Nov. 30


Remember the 75th anniversary of the beginning of the Russo-Finnish war in 1939 during todays reenactment titled Winter War: How it Was. More than 200 people will take part in recreating the opening salvoes of the battle for the north in Kamenka, a small village situated between Vyborg and St. Petersburg, using authentic equipment and vintage vehicles from the era. The faux battle begins at 2 p.m.



Monday, Dec. 1


Serbia filmmaker Emir Kusturica is the featured guest this evening at the Lensovet Palace of Culture the Petrograd Side. Fans of the director will get the chance to watch his movie Black Cat, White Cat, as well as ask questions about his award-winning filmography. Tickets for the event, which starts at 7 p.m., start at 2,000 rubles ($42.50).



Tuesday, Dec. 2


Today is the final day of Takoy Festival, a three-week program of plays based on the works of Dostoevsky, Remarque and other famed European writers, whose work is transcribed for theatrical performances. Tonights festival finale is Fathers and Sons, a two-act drama staged by the Novosibirsk Academic Drama Theater based on Turgenevs classic about familial relations.



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