You may know Chris Bukowski as the man who (almost) stole the heart of Emily Maynard on season 8 of The Bachelorette, or as the guy who broke the most hearts on the series’ spinoff The Bachelor Pad. But all of that was last year. We caught up with Chris to find out about life after reality TV.
LET’S JUST GET TO THE POINT. WHAT DO YOU LOOK FOR IN A GIRL?
Obviously physical attraction is important. Typically before you even speak to someone you see them first. I love a girl with great eyes and a fantastic smile. More importantly, it’s what’s on the inside that matters most. A girl that is confident, compassionate, loving, funny, and yet humble is the girl I’m looking for.
FAVORITE DATE SPOT IN CHICAGO?
First off, I love Chicago and find it a romantic city. I love to go out and dine so let’s start with breakfast at Yolk, lunch at Farmhouse, and a late dinner at Sunda because we’ll probably catch a Bulls game prior. There are so many different things I enjoy in Chicago.
WHAT’S THE BEST WAY TO GET A GIRL’S ATTENTION AT A BAR?
So typically a guy will send a drink a girl’s way to grab her attention. I like to go a different route. I’m going to send over a basket of fries to her and her friends to enjoy while they’re waiting to sit for their dining reservation or just something for them to snack on. It’s a sweet way to show my sense of humor and for the girl to feel a little more comfortable. It’s definitely a way better conversation starter compared to the outdated “Can I buy you a drink?” approach.
YOU WERE DUBBED A BAD BOY ON BACHELOR PAD, HAS THAT REPUTATION AFFECTED YOU AT ALL? HAS IT IMPACTED YOUR RELATIONSHIPS SINCE THE SHOW?
Dubbed a bad boy – I guess you could say that! It has affected me in a way that makes it difficult for me to describe. Am I bad boy for being competitive and trying to play a game like everyone else? Am I bad boy because I didn’t find a girl to fall in love with on Bachelor Pad? Am I a bad boy for being heartbroken? I guess it has affected me in a way that makes me try harder to show people who I really am. I’m full of love and try to avoid controversy -my friends and family can confirm that.
BEFORE THE BACHELORETTE, YOU WORKED IN SALES IN CHICAGO. NOW, YOU’RE OPENING A SPORTS BAR, BRACKET ROOM, THIS YEAR IN WASHINGTON, D.C. – HOW DID YOU DECIDE TO BREAK INTO THE NIGHTLIFE INDUSTRY?
Ever since graduating high school it has been my dream to open up my own sports bar. I attended college at UNLV and majored in hospitality, and food and beverage. Working in sales was fun and I definitely learned a lot, but I want to sell for myself, sell my own product. I have two unbelievable partners and we are going to change the meaning behind a sports bar.
WHAT ARE THE MOST IMPORTANT FACTORS IN A SUCCESSFUL RESTAURANT/BAR?
Being consistent in what you promise the customer and having a loyal customer base. This all happens from top to bottom from owners to cooks.
WHAT WAS THE BIGGEST LESSON YOU LEARNED DURING YOUR TIME ON REALITY TV?
The biggest lesson I learned was not to be someone that I’m not. I saw it in front of my eyes – guys putting on a front when the cameras are on them but once the cameras are gone, they’re a totally different person. In doing that you’re not only cheating yourself but you’re also cheating the girl that is there for a chance to fall in love. I learned from others mistakes. I have no regrets.
Photos by Sal Bolanos