A Magical Mackinac Island Proposal at the Grand Hotel’s Secret Garden

There’s something inherently special about being a part of a couple’s proposal, and Hem’s proposal to Urvi in the Grand Hotel’s Secret Garden was nothing short of magical. It was early Sunday morning on Memorial Weekend, a time when the island is just beginning to wake up. I arrived on the Island with the first Shepler’s Ferry of the morning. Most activity on the streets was the bustle of commuters, and early birds. Then the click clacks of the horses, and a calm morning murmur of voices.

Mackinac Island activities to do


My day started at Lucky Bean, my favorite coffee spot, where I was eagerly waiting for my morning fix. Before any Mackinac Island proposals, I make my stop here. Just as I was about to get my flat white, Hem texted me, letting me know they were on their way. Coffee in hand, I hurried outside and spotted them to my right. With a quick text to Hem—”walk a little slower, I’m right in front of you”—I found myself speed-walking and chugging my coffee. I needed to get to the Secret Garden and prepare.

Mackinac Island Proposal photographer in the secret Garden grand hotelThe Secret Garden is an amazingly maintained meadow of flowers, perfect for a proposal.

As I arrived, I quickly tested the lighting and adjusted settings on my camera, tucking them under my sweater. Soon after, Hem and Urvi walked in, Urvi was captivated by the Garden’s serene beauty. She paused to take a photo, and it was the perfect moment to make my move.

MAckinac Island proposal photographer

“Would you like a photo of the two of you?” I asked Urvi. She smiled and agreed, unaware of the surprise that was about to unfold. Her and Hem made their way to the picturesque bridge in the middle of the Garden. As I positioned them for the shot, I gave the cue. Hem reached into his pocket to pulled out a box.

In that instant, time seemed to stand still. The look of surprise and joy on Urvi’s face was priceless as Hem got down on one knee and asked her to marry him. The early morning light filtering through the trees, the quiet of the Garden, and the love between them made the moment truly unforgettable.

Mackinac island lilacs

Capturing proposals is always a heartwarming experience. Although, this Mackinac Island proposal, set against the backdrop of the Grand Hotel’s Secret Garden on a serene Memorial Weekend morning, was particularly special. Especially as I arrived back in Mackinac City on the 10am Shepler’s Ferry to see a line around the block. I was grateful for an early morning with the garden all to ourselves.The Grand Hotel's Secret Garden

Contact Nicole Geri to Schedule your Mackinac Island Proposal