*During a romantic getaway in Paris on Saturday, NBA star Amar’e Stoudemire got down on bended knee to ask his longtime girlfriend and the mother of his three children for her hand in marriage.


According to People magazine, his proposal to Alexis Welch took place overlooking the Eiffel Tower lights outside of their penthouse at Le Meurice Hotel Belle Etoile Royal Suite at 11 p.m. local time. He surprised her with a dinner after they spent the day taking a private historical tour of Paris that included stops at the Louvre and other landmarks.

“I have been planning my proposal for a while and overlooking the entire Paris skyline seemed like a perfect place. I am so happy she said ‘yes,’ and now we can continue to build our life together as husband and wife,” Stoudemire told People from Paris.

Amar’e presented Alexis, whom he met in 2002, with an 8.5-carat radiant-cut ring that he designed with celebrity jeweler Shayan Afshar.

The newly engaged couple was on a reported break in 2011 when Amar’e had a brief fling with Ciara. But not long after the singer confirmed the relationship in an interview in May of that year, it became clear that things between them had cooled down when the duo began being photographed on red carpets without the other.

By June, the athlete was photographed on the red carpet at the ESPY Awards with Alexis back on his arm.

Amar'e and Alexis at the ESPY's, June 2011