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The Real #CHill

Getting dressed up to the nines with

Sophisticated Weddings in anticipation of their

wedding day, “Real Housewives Of Atlanta”

star Cynthia Bailey and her fiancé Mike Hill of

Fox Sports get real and keep it #CHill

Location: JW Marriott Essex House, Photo: Femina Photo + Design, Dress: Netta Ben Shabu for Wedding Atelier, Tuxedo: Men's Wearhouse, Jewelry: London Jewelers, Headpiece: Bridal Styles Boutique, Make-up: Lilly Rivera for BridalGal, Hair: Juliann Diaz for BridalGal

SW: So how did you two lovebirds meet? Cynthia: We met on Steve Harvey’s talk show. Steve is a friend of mine, and he invited me to do his dating pool. He was really excited to find me a great guy… and he definitely did!

SW: Cynthia, you moved to New York City when you were 18 years old to kick off your modeling career, and Mike- you originally hail from the Bronx. What is your favorite thing about being back in New York? Cynthia: The energy, people, food, and culture. There’s nothing like the hustle and bustle of New York City. I know it is such a cliché, but having lived in New York, it really does make you feel like ‘if you can make it here, you can make it anywhere’. There is truly no place like it. Mike: I will always have an affinity and love for New York. There is no place I’ve ever been that matches the type of energy this city has. Whenever I get the chance to come back, I like to just take it all in. From the great cuisine to the amazing light and beautiful buildings, every time I’m here, I leave even more inspired to grow and make it even more.

Location: JW Marriott Essex House, Photo: Femina Photo + Design, Dress: Yumi Katsura for Designer Loft, Tuxedo: Generation Tux, Jewelry: London Jewelers, Headpiece: Bridal Styles Boutique, Make-up: Lilly Rivera for BridalGal, Hair: Juliann Diaz for BridalGal

SW: So Mike, how did you know Cynthia was “the one”? Mike: I just felt it. It took some time because, in a lot of situations, people love to send their representatives and not their authentic selves. Well, I learned they don’t come more genuine than Miss Bailey. She’s the first woman I’ve been in a relationship with that had all three of the qualities I wanted in a partner; someone I was mentally and physically attracted to, someone who matches my drive, and finally, someone who is compassionate and truly cares about others besides herself.

SW: What is your secret to making a relationship work amidst busy production schedules? Cynthia: Making my family and fiancé as much a priority as my business is. At this point in my life, one does not work for me without the other. The balance between the two makes me happy- I suppose I want it all.


Location: JW Marriott Essex House, Photo: Femina Photo + Design, Dress: Maggie Sottero for RK Bridal, Tuxedo: Men's Wearhouse, Jewelry: London Jewelers, Headpiece: Bridal Styles Boutique, Make-up: Lilly Rivera for BridalGal, Hair: Juliann Diaz for BridalGal

SW: What can you tell us about your upcoming wedding? What is your vision? Cynthia: I can tell you that it won’t be a traditional wedding, and I will not be a traditional bride. Mike and I both want a celebration, not a ceremony. We want to have fun!

SW: Will your RHOA castmates be guests at your wedding? Cynthia: I would love for all of my castmates to attend our wedding. Regardless of the drama some of us have going on, at the end of the day, it is still a sisterhood. I love these ladies and I truly believe that they are all very happy for me.

SW: Will the wedding be televised or privately held? Cynthia: Televised. I am excited to share this part of my life with my family, friends, and fans of “The Real Housewives Of Atlanta.”


SW: As a sportscaster with an easy-going temperament, how has it been finding your place among the “Housewives” franchise? Mike: So far, so good. All of the ladies have been great to me, and I appreciate that. I just try my best to support Cynthia while staying away from any drama that may arise. I’ve learned how to moonwalk out of these situations. Cynthia also does a great job with shielding me from any issues. That said, being a sportscaster has prepared me for any of the comments coming from fans of the franchise. Many of them are very opinionated. Sports fans are super opinionated too, so I’ve learned to develop a thick skin over the years.

Location: JW Marriott Essex House, Photo: Femina Photo + Design, Dress: Yumi Katsura for Designer Loft, Tuxedo: Generation Tux, Jewelry: London Jewelers, Headpiece: Bridal Styles Boutique, Make-up: Lilly Rivera for BridalGal, Hair: Juliann Diaz for BridalGal

SW: Do you and Cynthia watch sports or cheer on any particular teams together? Mike: This is funny because I think it’s the first time anyone has ever asked me this question. The answer, funnily enough, is no- Cynthia is not a sports fan. If you do a Google search, you’ll see a story where she’d mistakenly taken a picture with someone she thought was Patriot’s star quarterback Tom Brady, and it turned out he was just some random guy. We don’t watch sports together, but it doesn’t bother me at all. I guess she’s just Team #CHill!

SW: When the cameras aren’t rolling, how do you enjoy your down time together? Cynthia: Honestly, we just like to chill when we’re together. Go to dinner, see a movie, go to the spa- that kind of stuff. Our #CHill is very real and very us. We just enjoy each other’s company, and don’t really need a ton of distractions.

Location: JW Marriott Essex House, Photo: Femina Photo + Design, Dress: Maggie Sottero for RK Bridal, Tuxedo: Men's Wearhouse, Jewelry: London Jewelers, Headpiece: Bridal Styles Boutique, Make-up: Lilly Rivera for BridalGal, Hair: Juliann Diaz for BridalGal

SW: You’re all about the no drama. How do you find peace and calm amidst wedding planning? Cynthia: The first thing I did was hire a wedding planner. Courtney Aljinça is incredible. I know my vision, and trust her to help me execute it perfectly. I can be a bit of a control freak, however I know my lane. I’m a lot of things, but a wedding planner isn’t one of them. Between my vision and her expertise, it will be magical and drama-free.

SW: Are you a hands-on groom when it comes to planning, or do you prefer to take a backseat in the process? Mike: I have an opinion, but at the end of the day, I know my place. Just tell me when I need to show up, and how much I need to pay.


SW: You were surrounded by dozens of gowns at this shoot. When it comes time to find the dress, what will you be looking out for? Cynthia: I don’t think I’m going to choose the dress. I think the dress is going to choose me. It’s a feeling, you know? Just like my connection with Mike, when you know, you know.


SW: How did it feel to see Cynthia dressed up as a bride in advance of the big day? Mike: I must admit, I did get excited. I’d actually gotten kind of nervous, even though I knew it wasn’t the big day yet. Cynthia looked so gorgeous, but then again, she always does, even when just wearing a house robe. I can’t wait to see her in whatever dress she ultimately decides. I know she’ll look stunning.

Location: JW Marriott Essex House, Photo: Femina Photo + Design, Dress: Stephen Yearick for Bridal Reflections, Tuxedo: Generation Tux, Jewelry: London Jewelers, Headpiece: Bridal Styles Boutique, Make-up: Lilly Rivera for BridalGal, Hair: Juliann Diaz for BridalGal

SW: Was there any element from our photo shoot that you would love to incorporate into the wedding? Mike: The main thing is Cynthia’s happiness. She was so happy that day at the [“Sophisticated Weddings”] shoot, and I just want that for the rest of our lives together. I’d also take that Maybach [from M&V Limo] though, if someone wants to slide it my way!

SW: Your daughter Noëlle and Mike’s daughters Ashlee and Kayla had a special role in the proposal. Are the girls eager to assist in the wedding? Cynthia: Yes! They are all very excited. They were my favorite part of the proposal, and will definitely be a very special part of the wedding.

SW: Care to confess any guilty pleasures? Cynthia: My guilty pleasures are staying at home in bed all day in my pajamas, eating food, watching Netflix, and taking naps. And of course, anything that involves Mike Hill!

SW: Last but not least, have you set a resolution for the new decade? Cynthia: As I get older, my focus is more on mental and physical health, and wellness. Also, to continue not compromising my peace.

Location: JW Marriott Essex House, Photo: Femina Photo + Design, Dress: Kleinfeld Bridal Party, Tuxedo: Generation Tux, Jewelry: London Jewelers, Headpiece: Bridal Styles Boutique, Cake: City Sweets & Confections, Make-up: Lilly Rivera for BridalGal, Hair: Juliann Diaz for BridalGal

"The Real #CHill" is an exclusive feature from the

2020 Edition of Sophisticated Weddings.


Location:

JW Marriott Essex House


Photos:

Femina Photo + Design


Dresses:

Netta Ben Shabu for Wedding Atelier, Maggie Sottero for RK Bridal, Yumi Katsura for Designer Loft, Stephen Yearick for Bridal Reflections, Kleinfeld Bridal Party


Tuxedos:

Men's Wearhouse and Generation Tux


Jewelry:

London Jewelers


Headpieces:

Bridal Styles Boutique


Make-up:

Lilly Rivera for BridalGal


Hair:

Juliann Diaz for BridalGal


Cake:

City Sweets & Confections

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