Giuliani pops question, will marry in spring

— America's mayor is getting a new first lady. Rudy Giuliani and gal pal Judith Nathan are officially altar-bound, spokeswoman Sunny Mindel confirmed Friday.

Despite a veil of secrecy that kept the news secret for nearly a week, the union hardly came as a surprise.

The twice-divorced Giuliani, who once gushed that he hoped the couple's love would last forever, popped the question a week ago while the couple was in Paris, Mindel said.

The former mayor flew to Paris for a speech - but the trip turned into a different kind of engagement.

Mindel was tight-lipped about when, where and how, calling the details of the proposal "top-secret." The 58-year-old Giuliani gave Nathan an oval Ceylon sapphire, set in platinum and surrounded by 10 diamonds, Newsday and The New York Times reported Saturday.

As for when the big event will take place, Mindel said, "They're working it out."

The pair likely will tie the knot in a spring wedding, another source told the New York Daily News.

The Giuliani-Nathan romance exploded in a media frenzy in May 2000 after he admitted she was his "very good friend" when they were spotted sharing a cozy brunch. Days later, Giuliani announced his separation from then-wife Donna Hanover.

But they managed to hide most details of their life together from the public eye.

photo

AP Photo

Former New York Mayor Rudolph Giuliani, center, watches as his fiancee Judith Nathan shakes hands with Spain's King Juan Carlos. The New Yorkers met with the king Monday in Madrid, Spain, a day after Giuliani and Nathan became engaged.

The privacy-minded Giuliani kept his wedding news under wraps for five days. Even several confidants said they had no idea the engagement had taken place.

After a short side trip to Spain, the couple returned to New York.

"We are engaged," Giuliani said Saturday "It was a beautiful thing. It was very romantic, and we're very happy, and then the rest of it will all happen in due time."

Giuliani and Nathan, 47, recently bought a co-op together on Manhattan's East Side.

He credited Nathan, the head of a philanthropic organization, with guiding him through his bout with prostate cancer two years ago and the difficult months after Sept. 11.

The engagement came slightly more than four months after Giuliani and Hanover, his second wife, reached a divorce settlement.

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