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Fans of the Today show were elated when anchor Hoda Kotb announced in November 2019 that she and her boyfriend, Joel Schiffman, were engaged. Ever since the 56-year-old NBC star shared the exciting news, everyone has been anxious to get the scoop on the happy couple's wedding plans.
Here’s everything we know so far about Hoda Kotb’s engagement and wedding:
Who is Hoda's fiancé, Joel Schiffman?
For starters, the 62-year-old, who Hoda has described as "the finest man I've ever met," works in finance. According to Joel's LinkedIn, he's the Head of Intermediary Distribution at an investment management company.
Hoda and Joel first met in the summer of 2013 when the Today star was speaking at an event for Wall Street professionals. Through the years, Hoda has shared details about their meet-cute, including the first time the financier met her former Today cohost Kathie Lee Gifford. Hoda and Joel decided to go public with their relationship in 2015 after The Daily Mail published photos of them together on a Miami beach.
On November 25, 2019, Hoda showed off her gorgeous engagement ring, shocking fellow co-hosts Jenna Bush Hager, Craig Melvin, Savannah Guthrie, and Al Roker on Today. Needless to say, Joel did an amazing job.
What does Hoda’s engagement ring look like?
When asked how Joel popped the question, Hoda spared no detail about the special moment.
"We ended up having a little dinner on the beach," she said on Today, while revealing that the two were on a tropical vacation. "And he was like, 'I have something else I would like to say,' and he said some beautiful things, and then he got down on one knee. Then he said, 'Would you be my wife?'''
According to Ira Weissman, founder of the consumer education website The Diamond Pro, the NBC co-host’s ring appears to be a five-carat Asscher cut diamond set in a blue sapphire halo. "A ring of this impeccable quality could easily retail for over $250,000," he previously told Good Housekeeping.
Following Hoda's on-air announcement, People caught up with the Today star, who spilled that Joel actually consulted one of her friends, jeweler Jennifer Miller, to help him design the perfect ring. “What touched me so much about this ring is that he thought about it,” Hoda said to the outlet. “And he thought about what I might like. He went to [Miller] and they were sharing things back and forth unbeknownst to me. He was giving her ideas.”
What will Hoda's wedding dress look like?
The search is on for the perfect wedding dress, and Hoda has already enlisted the help of the best person she knows for the job — her mother, Sameha.
“It was so funny because she’s picked everything for me, and she said, ‘Honey, I don’t know. Do you want me to pick your wedding dress?’ And I said, ‘Well, you picked the first one, so yes, please pick the second one,’” Hoda told E! News. “But this one … it’s gonna be fun. So, my mom’s in charge, and I’m so happy.”
When is Hoda's wedding and where will it take place?
Shortly after saying yes, Hoda shared that she and Joel were planning to exchange vows “sooner rather than later, because what are we waiting for?” In January 2020, the bride-to-be sat down with Ellen DeGeneres to reveal that the couple was hoping to tie the knot in the fall. Due to the coronavirus pandemic, however, the couple has had to push back their special day.
"We did have to officially postpone it, which was a super bummer, because it was going to involve people getting on planes," the co-anchor told Entertainment Tonight. "We haven't picked our new date. We're just waiting to see what is what with everything. And, look, it's just like the show. I don't care where we do it, as long as we do it. I want our friends and family to be there, obviously, but the location is kinda secondary.”
In October 2020, Hoda opened up to People about the latest on her wedding, and she revealed that it may not be happening until summer 2021 in New York.
"I don't know if a destination will be in the cards anymore. My guess is we'll do it in the summertime," she told the outlet. "It’s going to be a beach wedding. We’ll probably do it somewhere around New York ... I don't know how quickly people are going to be able to travel again. So, I think it may be a little bit more intimate than I had anticipated just because of that. But I'm hopeful, like maybe summertime, somewhere in New York City, around New York."
Shortly after, Today coanchor Jenna Bush Hager revealed that she was actually asked to play a special part in Hoda’s wedding. “I was supposed to be the best girl of [Hoda’s] wedding in a few weeks,” she said on the fourth hour show.
Most recently, Jenna asked Hoda if she’ll have a performer at her wedding. Hoda shared that they plan on having a DJ, adding that she already has a romantic tune in mind.
"I love Van Morrison's 'Someone Like You,'" she said on the Today show. "That is such a beautiful, beautiful song. I think that'll be our wedding song."
Jenna followed this up with a question we’ve all been wondering: “When? Can we just set the date?” Hoda reminded her fellow cohost the reason behind the delay, but gave her a date to start looking forward to anyway.
"We can't fly anywhere, what are we supposed to do? It was supposed to be last November," Hoda said. "Maybe this November coming up. That's it. Put it on the calendar."
Regardless of when it will happen, Hoda made it clear that she intends on keeping the event simple.
"Nothing we do is about bells and whistles in that way. If he said let’s do it right now, I would," the mother of two told People in December 2019. "All I want it to be is fun and happy and everybody to feel easy breezy. No coordinated bridesmaids, just come as you are. That’s the theme of the rest of my life.”
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