Rose Cruickshank may seem unlucky in love, having been married four times and "tied the knot" on MAFS, but talking to the Married At First Sight NZ star, it's evident she's finally found "the one" in new husband Tony Ross – it just took a little while.
"Tony is my fourth and final husband," she smiles. "I call him lucky number four!"
The pair eloped to Bali recently, exchanging vows in an idyllic ceremony overlooking the sea after a two-week adventure around the island.
"I actually got a bit emotional and I've not been emotional at any of my other weddings, so that was really special," says Rose, 49. "I only wrote my vows the night before and I was planning to google for ideas, but I suddenly thought, 'No, I'm just going to write it from the heart,' and that's exactly what I did."
The two lovebirds met in Australia's Coffs Harbour three years ago, when Rose moved there for a job. It's a decision she has MAFS to thank for.
"MAFS made me realise I can do anything I want to do," she reflects. "It's given me the courage to let go of fear. I actually booked tickets back to New Zealand after eight months of being in Australia, but my flight got cancelled during COVID!"
Rose's MAFS match with Christopher Wilson was her failed fourth attempt at marriage, but it's not something she regrets.
"Looking back, MAFS was such an amazing experience," she muses. "People often ask me if I'd do it again and I say, 'Yeah, of course!' I really believe the universe used MAFS as a stepping stone to get me to where I am today."
And that place is a cute little villa near the water in Coffs Harbour, which she and Tony, 50, bought last year, around the same time he proposed.
"He asked me to marry him in Bali on my birthday at sunset," says Rose. "It was very romantic. I had an inkling it was going to happen because he told me to choose a ring. Then we thought, 'Why don't we just elope and get married here too?'"
But it wasn't long before they realised it's near-impossible to make the marriage legal in Bali.
Rose explains, "We just wanted something private, low-key and easy to tag onto the end of our holiday, but you have to jump through hoops to legalise it, so we're going to make it legal here in Australia in a couple of weeks, where friends and family can join us to celebrate."
Tony has a timeshare in Bali and the couple have now decided they'll travel there every August to celebrate their anniversary. Tony is an avid surfer, while Rose is a beach babe who's obsessed with Balinese design and the laid-back lifestyle.
"We have so much in common – everything just fits," she gushes. "If I reflect on my other marriages, I definitely have the most in common with Tony. I wasn't into hunting and fishing, and I didn't enjoy being out all night drinking. Tony and I have so many common values and interests. That's probably why it works so well."
Rose's third husband was Sensing Murder psychic Kelvin Cruickshank, 51. Their marriage ended in 2019 after just a year.
She also has three daughters, now aged 18 to 25, with her first ex-husband, who gets on so well with Tony, he's invited them to stay with him and his wife in Thailand. Rose laughs, "It'll be the first time we've holidayed together since we were married, but I'm sure it will go well!"
Tony has two teenage kids and both sets of children regularly come to stay in their three-bedroom villa. Rose says, "Tony is a true Cancerian family man. We just adopted a ragdoll cat named Daisy, and life consists of cooking together and watching Netflix. We're happy with a simple life."
Rose's advice for others who think they're unlucky in love?
"You've just got to believe. That's my motto in life and it's why I love to share my story. Never give up on finding love. Yes, I've had three failed marriages, but I had to go through that to get to where I am today. It's about accepting your path."
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