Mariah Carey Breaks Silence on Engagement to James Packer, Talks Wedding Plans & That Ring: ''It's So Heavy I Can't Lift My Arm''

Grammy winner opens up about the dress, the fairy-tale proposal and more for the first time since her Australian billionaire beau popped the question

By Melanie Bromley Jan 29, 2016 11:57 PMTags
Mariah Carey, James PackerPhotopix/GC Images

As we suspected, Mariah Carey is thrilled to be engaged to James Packer.

The Grammy winner opened up for the first time about the perfect moment when the Australian billionaire popped the question in an exclusive interview with E! News, sitting down with us Friday at the press day for her upcoming international tour.

"I'm feeling fantastic, better than ever," a glowing Carey told us.

Describing the proposal, she said it was "very romantic. He's an exceptional person and really...it gets more romantic by the day, so it's very sweet."

Packer proposed to Carey last week in her New York hometown. After getting down on one knee, he presented her with what can only be described as an utterly jaw-dropping 35-carat diamond ring. (And now that we've seen it up close...swoon!)

247PAPS.TV/Splash News

"It's so heavy I can't lift my arm up!" Carey joked, smiling. "No...It's a nice chunk."

That it is.

As for when the over-the-moon pair, who have been dating for just under a year, plan to walk down the aisle, Carey said, "If everything works out, it will be somewhat soon." She laughed, adding, "I don't mean if everything works out in that way, I mean there's a lot that goes into it."

Such as deciding on a dress! We asked her what she thinks of all the chatter surrounding her big day already.

"Well, how much speculation can there have been? It's only been a week," Carey said happily. "I am very excited about the dress, but I don't want to talk about it yet, as I have to have my first fitting.

"But," she added, "we are not doing a big wedding because he did two big weddings, and it's kind of like, 'I've done a big wedding [too]'... We would rather make it beautiful but humble."

Carey also sang the praises of her fiancé, calling Packer "the guy people go to even if they are barely friends with him, and they look to him to get them through any situation. He's one of those people that just always is there for people, and I think that is a quality that I haven't seen—except in myself."

She laughed again, yet another audible indicator of just what an incredible mood she was in today.

"I mean, I am the person my friends go to when they need something, and they need help and whatever, and so I look at that and he's a generous person as well—and a good-hearted person. He's young at heart, but also serious. And I mean that in the best way..."

Certainly sounds like a match made in heaven—and we've heard as much from sources close to the couple.


"They fell head over heels in love with one another," an insider previously told E! News. "It's crazy how perfect they are together, they both know it and couldn't be happier."

"As soon as their friendship turned romantic, they have wanted to spend every moment together," said another source. "They have a connection that is unparalleled; it's been a very beautiful experience for them both. If you spend even five minutes with them, you can't help but believe in true love."

As for why they work so well, notes our insider: "They are just very cute together, they like doing sweet things for one another. They want to make each other happy."

Steve Granitz/WireImage

And luckily they both like to travel in style! Mariah and James are about to hit the road together, when her Sweet Sweet Fantasy tour begins March 15. That will take them on a whirlwind trip to Europe, where she will perform in the U.K., Luxembourg, Belgium, Denmark, Norway, Sweden, Finland, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Germany, Italy, Switzerland, Austria, France and the Netherlands, before concluding with a few very special performances in South Africa.

Plus, she'll be resuming her  "#1 to Infinity" residency at The Colosseum at Caesars Palace next week in Las Vegas.

"I am so grateful for my life," Carey also told E! News today. "I have love, laughter and life, and everything.

"Even if sometimes I was going through the best career moment it may have been the worst personal moment. So we all have ups and downs in our lives and that's why my fans can relate to me. It's a great time in my life. I have my two babies [twins Monroe and Moroccan], they are 4 1/2, but they are still babies to me and they make every day even better."

For more on Mariah Carey and her upcoming wedding, tune into E! News this Monday, Feb. 1, at 7 p.m. and 11 p.m., to see our full interview with the newly engaged star.