Inside Alec and Hilaria Baldwin's Love Story and 10-Year Romance

Alec and Hilaria Baldwin
Sean Zanni/Patrick McMullan via Getty Images

ET is looking back at the pair's romantic adventure together.

It was love at first sight for Alec and Hilaria Baldwin. Now, 10 years after their first chance encounter, the couple are happily married and have five children together.

Their romance has been forged in the fires of the public spotlight since it began. Alec, had previously been married to Kim Basinger, and had gone through a very contentious divorce that often spilled out into tabloid headlines.

Hilaria, meanwhile, was a yoga instructor and the co-founder of a yoga studio in the West Village of New York City, and a routine trip to the vegan restaurant Pure Food and Wine would go on to change the course of her life forever.

Since tying the knot in June 2012, the pair have weathered many storms -- from Alec's run-ins with the law to miscarriage struggles to Hilaria's recent drama surrounding her heritage -- and the pair have emerged stronger as a family. So were taking a look back at the 62-year-old actor and 37-year-old yoga instructor's romance over the past decade.

Love at First Sight

On Feb. 18, 2019, Alec recounted their meet-cute in a heartfelt Instagram post commemorating the anniversary of the first time they met.

"Eight years ago, I wandered into Pure Food and Wine on Irving Place, on an unseasonably warm February evening. My friend, @bocartist and I sat down (outside!) and as I turned to my left I saw a woman who would change my life. Entirely," Alec wrote, alongside a photo of the lovebirds sharing a kiss over dinner. "Thanks for all you’ve given me. You are a gift."

Smooth Talker

Not only was their passing encounter at Pure Food and Wine like something out of a romantic comedy, Alec even brought out a movie-esque pick-up line that Hilaria later recounted in a New York Times profile.

"I was standing near the door with my friends when he walked up and took my hand and said, ‘I must know you,'" Hilaria recalled. She said she found the line to be disarming and the pair began chatting, after which the movie star handed her his business card, with his phone number.

Alec later confirmed her story about his card, telling the publication, "I never ask women for their phone numbers."

No Kissing, Lots of Handshakes

After the two played phone tag, Hilaria and Alec went on their first real date, and she recalled how, at the end of a lovely night at a theater district restaurant with a group of friends, he shook her hand and "told me he really wanted to get to know me."

Apparently, this sort of chivalry was par for the course during the early days of their romance. In March 2020, Alec served as a guest host of The Ellen DeGeneres Show, where he welcomed his wife as a guest. Hilaria told the audience, "Do you guys know that he shook my hand and didn't kiss me for six weeks when we first met?"

Hilaria went on to reveal that, while in the early days of their relationship, Alec would tell her "all these things, like, 'I'm gonna marry you. I'm gonna spend the rest of my life with you. We're gonna have a ton of kids.'"

"And then he would shake my hand at the end of the night," she said.

"I didn't want you to think that I just wanted to have sex with you!" Alec explained.

A Short Engagement

The couple wasted no time in building their life together. Hilaria spoke with Beach magazine in 2013, and revealed how the pair were only dating for five months before they moved in together. "Then we started talking about getting married; then he proposed; then we got married; now we have a kid. So it all went quite fast!" she said at the time.

The pair met in 2011, got engaged in April 2012, and then tied the knot in June 2012.

"I think we knew fairly soon because we built a real relationship very early on," she said of their whirlwind love affair. "We got to know each other in a way I think most people forgo if they start dating first, then learn about each other after."

The Lavish Wedding

Three months after announcing their engagement, Alec and Hilaria exchanged vows at St. Patrick’s Old Cathedral in New York, and held their reception at the NYU Kimmel Center. A-listers in attendance included Alec's brother, Stephen Baldwin, Tina Fey, Mariska Hargitay, Robert Kennedy Jr., Saturday Night Live producer Lorne Michaels, Woody Allen and more.

The groom wore a suit by Tom Ford, while the bride wore a silk magnolia trumpet Amsale gown, with cap sleeves and a keyhole back neckline, accented with crystal buttons.

Blending The Families

When the pair wed, Alec was already the father of a teenage daughter, Ireland Baldwin, from his previous marriage to Kim Basinger. However, it seems that Hilaria and Ireland have formed a close bond, and in 2019, Hilaria addressed being a step-mom in a heartfelt post on Instagram.

"I rarely address being a stepmom, but it is part of our family. I always want to deal with it with such often you hear horror stories about evil stepparents and I wanted to make sure I did right by the family I was stepping into when I married Alec," she wrote. "I love my stepdaughter as much as I love my biological children and I become a mommy lioness when I see comments that insinuate otherwise. ...Having a stepchild is a delicate matter. Especially one who is grown. I think my relationship with her has been so successful because I never tried to step in as her mommy. She has a good mother, who I have tremendous respect for."

"When I met Ireland, I said to Alec: if she is not OK with our relationship, I cannot go further. Family is first and she needed to be ok with me," Hilaria shared. "We have never had a fight or a bad moment. Nor have I with her mother. Ireland and I love each other and she knows that I am here for her...and I know that she is here for me."

Welcoming Their First

In August 2013 -- just a little over a year after tying the knot --  the happy couple welcomed their first child, daughter Carmen Gabriela.

Alec's daughter, Ireland, quickly responded to the joyous news with utter excitement, tweeting, "Welcome to the world, Carmen! I'm a f*****g sister!"

Evolving As Parents

Carmen Gabriella was the first of the couple's five children, whom they have welcomed in the past seven years of marriage.

After Carmen, the pair welcomed four sons -- Rafael Thomas, 5, Leonardo, 4, Romeo Alejandro, 2, and their newest baby boy, Eduardo, 5 months.

Alec opened up about raising five kids with Hilaria while on Rob Lowe's Literally! Podcast back in September, and explained how the pair have different ideas about parenting based on their own upbringing, and how Hilaria is helping him evolve.

"I hit the jackpot as far as that's concerned because I wound up having a lot of kids with a woman who's a great mom," he said. "But we do not always agree. My wife prevails, if you will, but we do not always agree because I'm still much older than my wife...  I come from a time, my dad was a very tough guy, and he would just look at you with that look... We were terrified of my dad. He was a really tough guy. With me, my wife lectures me more than my children. My wife is like, 'Don't look at them like that, Alec! That look is not good.'"

Their Sweet Philosophies and Words of Love

Through thick and thin, rain or shine, Alec and Hilaria have stayed strong, true and fiercely loyal to one another.

In January of this year, Alec shared a heartwarming message for his lady love that truly summed up the kind of connection they have. "Happy birthday to the love of my life. To the only person in the world who brings me joy and peace every day. The person who is my home. My everything," Baldwin captioned a heartwarming family photo.

For more on the couple's sweet, 10-year romance, check out the video below.