LOS ANGELES (AP) — Simon Cowell is engaged. The 54-year-old “X-Factor” and “American Idol” impresario proposed to longtime girlfriend Lauren Silverman, a source close to the couple told The Associated Press on Thursday. The two have been dating for more than two years and have a 2-year-old son, Eric.
The source spoke on condition of anonymity because she was not authorized to publicly announce the engagement. Reprise Records, Cowell’s label, had no comment.
The couple has weathered a tabloid storm in Britain after the Sunday Mirror reported that Silverman was pregnant and Cowell was the father. The New York Post also reported that Cowell became engaged to Silverman on Wednesday night in Barbados, where they were celebrating Eric’s second birthday.
They have remained quiet about the rumors, with Cowell telling the London Evening Standard this month that it’s “complete nonsense.” Silverman has said nothing publicly.
But they did not let the reports get in the way of their romantic holiday, which included Cowell surprising his girlfriend with a giant teddy bear decorated with red hearts and roses. He also treated her to dinner at Barbados’ Cliff restaurant, followed by a trip to the beach.
In a recent interview with The Associated Press, Cowell said he enjoys being a father and is glad he doesn’t have an image to protect like most celebrities his age.
“I’m in this position because I’ve made mistakes — and that’s OK,” he said, referring to his high-profile romances with multiple women. “I’m not trying to sell myself as a saint.”
Cowell has two sons from his two short-lived marriages. He was divorced last year from socialite Terri Seymour, though the two have remained close friends and business partners. Cowell said he treasures the time he gets to spend with Eric because it reminds him not to take his success for granted.
“I work so hard, I forget sometimes what I’ve achieved … and this little boy gives you perspective,” he said. “It’s great.”
Mum, Dad and Eric. Now two days old. pic.twitter.com/ChWlrXmtmO
— Simon Cowell (@SimonCowell) February 16, 2014
Cowell has parlayed his sharp wit into a multimillion-dollar television career with the singing competition shows “American Idol” and “The X Factor,” a U.S. version of a show he created in England. He also is an executive producer of NBC’s singing competition “The Voice.”
In February, Cowell told the AP that he was developing three new television ideas and hoped to pitch them once his days on the prime-time talent shows came to an end, which is looking more likely as ratings for “American Idol” continue to sag.
Cowell’s new entertainment company, Syco Entertainment, which he runs with business partner Cecile Frot-Coutaz, has a programming deal with FremantleMedia. The two have been busy creating shows in Britain and beyond. On Thursday Fremantle announced it had signed a deal with the Chinese dating format “If You Are the One” for an English-language version to be produced by Syco.
The Associated Press contributed to this report. Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.