From the moment Stu Laundy stepped out of the helicopter, The Bachelorette’s Sophie Monk knew there was something different about the man in front of her.
It wasn’t because she’d met him before – indeed, she and Stu were briefly introduced a year earlier in Sydney – but because she’d felt a spark she hadn’t experienced with any of the other suitors.
“I knew he was The One, I had chemistry with him,” Soph gushes, as she opens up to Woman’s Day at our finale photoshoot.
“I felt like Stu was just there for me. Off camera he was always assuring me and checking to see if I was OK. I know Jarrod cared about me, but it felt like he was trying to compete to win a trophy.”
Stu reveals he would always stay behind after filming wrapped to make sure Sophie was happy.
“It was probably against the rules, but I didn’t listen. I just wanted to grab Sophie’s hand and ask her how she was doing because it’s the hardest I’ve ever seen someone work,” he admits.
“She was like one of those Energiser bunnies – she just kept going. I’m so proud of her.”
WATCH: Relive Stu's road to romance on The Bachelorette. Post continues...
And her instant feelings for him were reciprocated. Like Sophie, Stu felt a connection the second he laid eyes on the pretty blonde singer.
“She was one of the most beautiful people I’d ever seen in my life. She made me laugh, and while I don’t want to sound too sad, it was the first time I’d laughed properly in a long time. From that moment I thought, ‘I’m going to chase this girl,’” says Stu.
Now, head-over-heels in love and looking forward to a future together, the couple reveal their plans to elope and start a family.
“I’d prefer to elope rather than stay in Australia. And I’d want it to be low-key. I just want to have a big party and for everyone to enjoy themselves,” Sophie, 37, says.
As for children, the pair say [despite Stu’s vasectomy] the prospect of having a baby of their own is “very possible”.
The pair have already set their sights on having a son.
“I wouldn’t be disappointed if I had another girl, but I’d love to have a boy,” admits Stu.
“I’d want a boy because I know how hard it is being a girl,” adds Soph. “I like the name Diesel.”
To see Sophie and Stu's official photo album to find out what else their future holds, get the new issue of Woman's Day - on sale now!