FORMER Miss Universe Jennifer Hawkins is engaged to her beau of seven years, Jake Wall, who popped the question with a $200,000 custom-made, Nic Cerrone diamond ring on New Year's Eve.The Sunday Telegraph can exclusively reveal Wall, 27, proposed to Hawkins, 26, while on holiday at luxurious Linneaus Resort, a few kilometres outside of Byron Bay.
The couple met at Fanny's nightclub in Newcastle in 2003 when Hawkins was a model and Knights cheerleader.
Wall knew then he wanted to marry her, saying: "Marriage has crossed my mind. We're only young, but I think I'm definitely meant to be with her. I love her to death."
Since then, their lives have changed dramatically. There is no clearer indication of this than Wall's decision to sell the story of their engagement before he had even proposed to Hawkins. New Idea magazine is understood to have bought the story and was asked to pay up to $300,000.
"They are very happy. She's thrilled," a close friend said.
The loved-up pair has been enjoying the local hospitality, including dining at Quattro Restaurant on Wednesday. On Friday, they were spotted at O'Pes Restaurant. Hawkins appeared relaxed in a short black dress with a brown crocheted hat, while Wall wore a grey singlet and black shorts.
After eating a healthy meal of Mahi Mahi on a green papaya salad, they couldn't have looked more relaxed and casual as they left arm-in-arm.
It is understood Wall proposed later that night.
Cerrone's staff are believed to have worked overtime to have the ring ready for Wall to pick up on Boxing Day to take on the couple's holiday. "I can't comment on that story yet," Cerrone said. "It's a little bit difficult at the moment."
Hawkins' manager Sean Anderson did not return The Sunday Telegraph's calls.
In July, Hawkins revealed her five-year plan, which included starting a family. "Kids and marriage and all of that stuff," she said at the time.
"Well, maybe not in five years, but I mean in the near future - soon. It is definitely something I would like down the track and so would he."
Just a month later, the couple splashed out $1.8 million for an oceanfront block of land at North Curl Curl, near Narrabeen, to build their "dream home".
Wall's proposal put a positive spin on a tough week for Hawkins, who was dumped by Myer to showcase its brands at G'Day USA event in Los Angeles this month.