After a crushing breakup, Becca Kufrin pulls herself from reality TV wreckage to find a new on-screen match — and aims to help others find their Valentine in ‘The Bachelor Live on Stage’.
She was the winner of the 22nd season of The Bachelor. Until she wasn’t. She did not represent the best-case scenario for finding love on a reality TV show. Until she did.
In a glitzy, made-by-ABC-TV fairy tale, Becca Kufrin survived the worst on-screen breakup in Bachelor history and lived to meet the man of her real-world dreams when she starred in the 14th season of The Bachelorette. She knows all about the romantic powers of Champagne and roses, so it is no surprise that Kufrin has some very strong feelings about Valentine’s Day.
They just might not be the ones you’d expect.
“My whole issue is with the Hallmark card idea of Valentine’s Day, with dinner at the expensive restaurant and all of the hoopla. I like to make it more intimate,” said the 29-year-old Kufrin. “Last year, we made dinner, cracked open a bottle of Champagne and just had a date night in. You don’t need one big day to show someone you love them.”
The other half of Kufrin’s “we” is Garrett Yrigoyen, the man she picked as her Bachelorette winner in the summer of 2018. The man who is her fiancée and the doting co-parent of their Corgi, Minno. The three of them live in Carlsbad, where they spend a lot of time socializing in the dog parks and eating at the Shorehouse Kitchen and Casa de Bandini.
The 30-year-old Yrigoyen is also the guy who captured Kufrin’s heart after it had been broken on live television. The heartbreaker was Arie Luyendyk Jr., who proposed to her at the end of The Bachelor, only to call off the engagement a few weeks later so he could pursue Lauren Burnham, the show’s runner-up.
The New York Times called the two-part live-TV meltdown “endless and painful,” and Kufrin doesn’t disagree. But less than two years later, she is vouching for the whole Bachelor experience on a stage near you.
For her latest gig, Kufrin is co-hosting The Bachelor Live on Stage, a touring show that compresses the multiepisode Bachelor experience into one evening of on-stage matchmaking. The cross-country tour — which comes to the San Diego Civic Theatre on Feb. 27 and the Ace Hotel in Los Angeles on Feb. 28 — will feature games, challenges and lots of speed dating. (To apply or nominate a friend to be the Bachelor or one of the Bachelorettes during The Bachelor Live on Stage, visit bachelorliveonstage.com/bachelor).
When it’s over, there will be a love match between the hometown bachelor and one of the eligible ladies from the audience. Or if not a forever match, at least an adventure to remember.
“Not many people can say they have been a part of this,” said Kufrin, who is co-hosting the tour with Bachelor Nation favorite Ben Higgins. “I would say to potential contestants, ‘Just embrace it as something unique and special.’”
When it comes to romance, TV or otherwise, Becca Kufrin is a survivor with war stories to share and triumphs to savor. So in the words of the straight-talker herself, “Let’s do the damn thing.”
Becca Kufrin as The Bachelorette (peep her future fiancé Garrett Yrigoyen, second row, far right). (Craig Sjodin/ABC)
Becca Kufrin and her suitors on The Bachelorette compete in a football-themed challenge. (Paul Hebert/ABC/Warner Horizon)
Best date, reality TV version
Thanks to The Bachelor and The Bachelorette, Kufrin and her gentlemen have picnicked in Tuscany, explored the Bahamas by sea plane and ridden a camel in Las Vegas. But the most fun she had on a TV date was during her first one-on-one adventure with Bachelorette runner-up Blake Horstmann. It wasn’t fancy, but it sure was cathartic. Which made it perfect.
“We went into this big industrial space and we just broke things,” Kufrin said of the search-and-destroy encounter. “It was one of my favorite dates. It was just such a cool experience.”
Best date, real-life version
No cameras. No hoopla. No complaints. For Kufrin, the best, most-romantic date with Yrigoyen is no date at all. (But she would never say no to a nice cold beer and a warm oven mitt.)
“If I’m having a bad day or I’m stuck in traffic, I come home and the house has been cleaned up and he has a beer waiting for me in a bucket of ice. It’s nice to be wined and dined, but I just love to have him in the kitchen cooking with me, with the candles lit and some swing music playing. When I think of romance, it’s the little things that make me love Garrett more.”
But about that breakup
Speaking of Garrett and cozy nights, Kufrin knows she would not be in the good place she’s in now without the bad place she was in the night The Bachelor Season 22 finale aired. It was not the outcome she envisioned, but it wasn’t the end, either.
“It was terrible. And seeing it for the first time with a live audience didn’t help,” Kufrin said. “When it went down, I was so shocked, I didn’t know how to process it. But what I learned going through the whole process with Arie and getting engaged is that I still wanted a partner and I still wanted kids someday. That made it easier to go on The Bachelorette and say what I wanted and what I didn’t want.”
A toast to sweats, and a no-sweat future
In addition to The Bachelor Live on Stage, Kufrin’s post-TV life includes launching B the Label, a line of soft, comfy loungewear that reflects Kufrin’s much-chronicled love of sweatpants. It also reflects her support of women’s causes. A percentage of the label’s sales benefit WomenOne.org, a nonprofit dedicated to providing education to women and girls in need.
Kufrin might be wearing her adored sweatpants when she and Yrigoyen celebrate this Valentine’s Day. She will be on the road with The Bachelor Live on Stage, and Yrigoyen will be keeping her company. She is hoping there will be time for sushi, which she loves. She knows there will be time for the things she loves most.
“I don’t know what life will be like on this tour, but as long as I can cuddle with Garrett and Minno, I’ll be good.”
For more photos from PACIFIC’s day with Becca and Garrett, click here.
Photography: K.C. Alfred
Styling: Kristi Brooks
Hair and Makeup: Amanda Thorne (Thorne Artistry)
Photographer’s Assistant: Denis Poroy
Shot on location at the Porto Vista Hotel, Piazza della Famiglia and Morning Glory in Little Italy
Special thanks to...
Broadway San Diego, Little Italy Association of San Diego, Consortium Holdings, Olive Creative Strategies