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by Melanie Bromley | Fri., Sep. 25, 2015 6:00 AM
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George Clooney had famously declared he wasn't remarriage material (he was previously wed to actress Talia Balsam from 1989 to 1993), but last September as he stood with his new bride, Amal, by his side while paparazzi swarmed to take their picture, he looked the happiest he had ever been.
It's been 12 months since their extravagant three-day Venetian celebration and the couple—who split their time between homes in Oxfordshire, England; Lake Como, Italy; Los Angeles; and Cabo San Lucas, Mexico—are still head over heels in love.
As they prepare to celebrate their first wedding anniversary on Sept. 27, E! News investigates their fabulous jet-set life and how George has transformed from the perpetual bachelor into the perfect doting husband.
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He's Incredibly Romantic:
"George likes to surprise Amal and take her on trips to special locations," says an insider. "It's always incredibly romantic and the dates he plans are so well thought out. He does little things for her all the time, hides expensive jewelry in places so she finds it and it surprises her. And, he writes her little love notes when they're away" from each other.
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He Loves Showing Amal a Good Time:
Between acting, producing and directing and time spent working on his humanitarian causes, it's fair to say that George has a pretty hectic schedule. And Amal's career keeps her equally busy. Recent cases the Oxford-educated lawyer has worked on include representing the former president of the Maldives and helping Greece reclaim the Elgin Marbles.
All the more important that they make time for play amid all the work then!
Last month, George and Amal hopped on a private jet from Lake Como to Ibiza for the Spanish launch of his Casamigos tequila line. Dressed in a gold shimmery dress, Amal looked stunning and George couldn't take his eyes off her. The chemistry between them was palpable and they weren't afraid to show PDA (at one point, they even Eskimo-kissed by rubbing their noses in front of fellow partygoers).
"George still has all the fun he had when he was a bachelor, but it's better now because he's doing it with Amal, who's his best friend," says a source. "The weekend was full of fun and giggles with friends. They've not morphed into a boring couple who just stay in and don't ever do anything."
George Is in Awe of Amal and Isn't Afraid to Show It:
"The more he gets to know her the more in love, happy and content he seems," the source adds. "He's wild about Amal and even if they're at a party in a room full of people he'll go over and kiss and hug her and whisper in her ear, and make her squeal with laughter. He gives her attention and doesn't care who sees. He'll sidle up quietly and hug her from behind.
"They're one of those couples that can communicate without speaking."
He Cherishes Amal's Independence as Much as She Does:
When they are not holed up together in one of their multimillion-dollar mansions, George and Amal live very different lives. Their professional endeavors often force them to be continents apart, so time spent together is extra special. But the time apart also allows them to fully appreciate their romance—absence truly does make the heart grow fonder in this case. There is a huge amount of mutual respect and trust between them, so they feel free to have their own lives outside of their marriage.
Says the insider, "George and Amal spend a lot of time together but also a good amount of time apart and that is good for both of them. Their lives are very full and complete. Often times there is travel involved and periods of time when they don't see a lot of each other, but it really works for their relationship."
Another source explains, "They don't have to be together every single day of the year because the relationship is so secure.
"They're one of those couples that when they're together they're very content in each other's company. They can curl up on the sofa like a couple of cats, sitting there quietly just reading, or they'll sit up until the early hours, laughing one minute then putting the world to rights the next.
"Their time feels precious—they never argue, bicker or fight over petty stuff because they're genuinely happy and content to be together."
They do have one golden rule, though, and it's that they try never to be apart for longer than one week. George has said, "Our only adjustments are figuring out our schedules."
George Loves How Amal Challenges Him:
The Oscar-winning actor and producer is one of the most charming men on the planet, but when it comes to intelligence, he willingly admits that Amal is the brains of this operation. In fact, the red carpet veteran has now become the arm candy—and he's fine with that.
"[I feel] shiny and pretty. That's mostly what I do now," he joked to Stephen Colbert earlier this month.
"The only way we resolve anything is by arm wrestling, "he added. "That is my only chance of winning anything with her because if it's an intellectual battle, I would lose. She's the smart one in the family."
Indeed, Amal's intellect has been a huge turn-on for the 54 year old.
"They can discuss anything from politics to movies to fashion," says a source. "He loves that she sometimes has different opinions and will challenge him on things. He knows how brilliant she is and he feels very fortunate to be able to share his life with her.
"He is very supportive and proud of the incredible things she has done and always stands by her."
With just about a year of marriage behind them, George and Amal are definitely still very much in the honeymoon phase. Friends say they have never seen him so happy. In finding Amal, George found the love of his life.
"When they are together, George completely lights up. You can see how in love with Amal he is," the source says. "He gets that huge George Clooney smile and it never fades. She really swept him off his feet and he's still kind of in shock about it all.
"They fit together beautifully in all aspects of life. Their families have become close and they've made a life together that is beyond what they ever expected."
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He's Proud to Tell the World How Much He Loves Her:
While accepting the Cecil B. DeMille Award at the Golden Globes in January, George took the opportunity to express what it felt like to land the biggest and best role of his life: Amal's husband.
"It's a humbling thing when you find someone to love—even better when you've been waiting your whole life. And when your whole life is 53 years…Amal, whatever alchemy it is that brought us together, I couldn't be more proud to be your husband."