Strictly’s Kristina Rihanoff and Ben Cohen announce their engagement after a romantic Maldives proposal

Kristina Rihanoff and Ben Cohen are engaged after the former rugby pro popped the big question during their sun-soaked trip to the Maldives

 Ben Cohen and Kristina Rihanoff smile and pose together as they attend The London Critics' Circle Film Awards at the May Fair Hotel on January 22, 2017 in London, England.
(Image credit: Getty Images/ David M. Benett/Dave Benett)

Kristina Rihanoff said ‘yes’ after her long-time boyfriend and former Strictly partner, Ben Cohen proposed during their Maldives holiday.

Former Strictly partners Kristina Rihanoff and Ben Cohen have announced their engagement after Ben planned a surprise, beach proposal.

The pair met after being partnered together on the 11th season of Strictly Come Dancing. Following their stint on the show, Ben ended his marriage with wife Abby Cohen to be with Kristina, with the pair now revealing their exciting engagement news in an exclusive with Hello!, sharing snaps of the moment Ben got down on one knee.

The former Strictly pro, Kristina told the magazine that it was the ‘biggest surprise’ of her life and said, "Although we'd talked before about getting married one day, I hadn't the slightest idea that Ben was planning this. I was overcome with emotion.”

Kristina Rihanoff and Ben Cohen attend the launch photocall for the Strictly Come Dancing live tour 2014 at NIA Arena on January 16, 2014 in Birmingham, England.

(Image credit: Getty Images/ Steve Thorne / Stringer)

The proposal came mid-way through their 16-day Maldives trip and saw the pair set out on a special boat trip to a neighboring island where a heart, formed out of our lanterns was waiting, with the words ‘Will you marry me?’ drawn in the sand. 

Upon seeing the romantic message, Kristina recalled that she said, Yes, yes and yes' straight away,’ but added that her first reaction was ‘wow.’ 

Kristina then went on to say, “It was absolutely surreal and I couldn't believe what was happening. I'm usually very perceptive but I didn't have a clue Ben had been planning this. How he managed to keep it a secret was amazing.”

Ben also revealed his decision to propose on their holiday, saying, “I wanted us to go further forward together and taking a holiday in such a beautiful place felt like the perfect moment to do that. Setting the scene had to be really special and with the help of members of staff at the resort, we achieved that.”

The couple, who met in 2013 on the BBC dancing competition, share daughter Mila together, who they welcomed in 2016. Ben also has two daughters, Harriette and Isabella from his marriage to Abby.

The pair have now marked eight years together and are said to be very excited to celebrate their engagement with their family and friends. 

Naomi Jamieson
Lifestyle News Writer

Naomi is a Lifestyle News Writer with the Lifestyle team and has recently earned her Gold Standard Diploma in Journalism from the NCTJ. She has a background in design, having studied Illustration at Plymouth University but has taken a leap into the world of journalism after always having a passion for writing. She currently writes pieces on beauty, fashion, and entertainment for and My Imperfect Life.