Meet Queensland’s most eligible singles
From TV stars and athletes to entertainers, comedians, foodies and business moguls, we've put together a list of some of Queensland's most eligible bachelor and bachelorettes.
In the lead up to Valentine's Day, they reflect on the highs and lows of flying solo.
TESS ALEXANDER, 28, FORMER MISS AUSTRALIA/PRESENTER
"It's so important to be comfortable with yourself first and if someone comes along who fits into the puzzle piece, amazing!"
I've been in a few long-term relationships and I've learned I don't need to be in a relationship that isn't a 12/10. I've been single for a couple of months and I'm enjoying it. Love is like a chest of drawers: each relationship has its own drawer filled with memories, lessons and emotions. For me, every "drawer" has been important and, in all honesty, they will all be a part of me. I'm still good friends with my ex and he'd say I'm too caring and selfless, to my own detriment. I'm a person who loves love, simple as that. Dating is excellent, you get to connect with people. I find that really exciting and if it turns into something more, brilliant, and if not, you get a window into someone else's life. A partner to me is someone who will stand by your side, supporting you while you support them. It's selfless love and understanding. You push them to be their best, and they push you to be unwaveringly, you. It's looking at them and feeling safe and loved and excited for life while they look at you and feel the same. That's what I'm looking for.
Celeb crush: Hi, Liam Hemsworth? My number is 0428 …
LEE CARSELDINE, 44, EX-CRICKETER/TV STAR
"A long time ago I went on a blind date and the girl thought she was catching up with one of my teammates but got me instead. Mass confusion followed."
I've been single for exactly 187 days, but who's counting? Last year was a very challenging one for me so now I'm focusing on looking after my dad, my two sons, my health and my business. The best part about being single is the freedom you have and the worst is there isn't someone to share special moments with. I'm not one for dating apps, they scare me but I'm lucky I lead the lifestyle I do because I'm always meeting new people. I've been able to do some amazing things in my life, like being named in the Top 20 Courageous Athletes of 2008, lasting 55 days on (TV show) Australian Survivor, raising my boys and a personal highlight, claiming the title of Australia's Best Butt in 2019 (I still think voting was rigged.) I do think there was one that got away, a girl in Year One. I liked her and she broke up with me because I stole her sandwich.
Celeb crush: Charlize Theron or Jessica Alba.
DAVID NASH, 29, RADIO HOST
"My love life is like a really bad sitcom episode that you'd probably skip."
As much as I'm happily single, and have been for just over two years, I'd also happily be in a relationship if the right girl came along. I like to think I have pretty good intuition when it comes to girls, I eradicate the bad news pretty quickly. I'm not into drama. I decided to cut out dating apps, they were really distracting and inhibiting anything developing properly with anyone. But when I was on Tinder, I'd keep my job secret, it was easier. I used to say I was an onion farmer, nobody ever asked any follow up questions after that! I love my job as a host on Triple M but I have lots of hobbies outside work. I love brunching, hiking and play AFL with the Mt Gravatt Vultures, gridiron with the Bayside Ravens and volunteer as the ringside announcer for the Australian Wrestling Alliance. I love wrestling. I also love true crime, I can't get enough.
Celeb crush: Taylor Swift between 2009-13, when she was actually good.
TAYLOR MCKEOWN, 24, OLYMPIC SWIMMER
"I get way more of a thrill when I'm doing the chasing."
If a guy is really into me, I freak out. With me, it's definitely a case of, "treat 'em mean, keep 'em keen". It's weird, but I like the guy way more when they're not into me. It's probably why I've been single for 2½ years. Being a swimmer, I spend so much of my time in a sporting environment, it's really difficult to meet new people. I don't go out to bars, or other typical places where you'd meet people which only leaves me with the beach, gigs (I'm addicted to live music), cafes and the pool. I'm high energy, spontaneous, competitive and easy going so I'd love a man who can match that. Someone with lush hair, blue eyes, athletic build, tall, understands my commitments and is low maintenance. I do love having my independence and the freedom to do whatever makes me happy. And I've been able to achieve a lot being that person, like a Commonwealth Games gold medal and Olympic silver medal. It's great to do whatever I want and live carefree. But none of those moments have any romance. I'd love nothing more than to share my journey with someone I love and to make memories that last a lifetime.
Celeb crush: A younger Leonardo DiCaprio, or Matt Corby.
CORY TEUNISSEN, 22, CHAMPION WAKEBOARDER
"I'd love to meet someone who is funny, has a positive attitude and is fun to be around."
I've been single for too long, about 3½ years. I'm a professional wakeboarder and live in America for six months a year. When I'm overseas, I travel every weekend and when I'm home on the Gold Coast, it's only for six months. It makes it hard to date and find something real. I'm a committed person so I'd love to find someone who is dedicated and OK with me travelling a lot. I'm still young so there's plenty of time to meet someone. The best thing about being single is pouring my life into what I love. I have two world titles and at 15, I was the youngest wakeboarder to land a move (the Switch Toeside Wake to Wake1080). I've been able to focus on my sport, but it would be nice to share it all with someone else.
Celeb crush: Margot Robbie.
CLAIRE PARVIZ, 55, RESTAURATEUR
"Having a child and keeping a business alive for five years has been my main priority so I haven't really thought about my personal life."
I'd describe my love life as M.I.A. (missing in action). To be honest, I've put everything and everyone in my life first. I'm also old school. I don't like the idea of internet dating so it's challenging to meet people, especially in the hospitality industry, we work anti-social hours. Over the years, I've had some disaster dates. I went on a first date to a popular restaurant and ended up on a table next to my daughter and her date - awkward. I've also been set up on a blind date and he showed up wearing crocs. I've been happily single for three years and have embraced my freedom but I'd like to share my life with someone. My exes would say different things about me. One would probably prefer to never hear my name again and the other is a great friend with whom I've successfully co-parented for over 20 years.
Celeb crush: I'm a sucker for a British accent so Jude Law or Idris Elba.
TOM OLIVER, 27, SINGER/ACTOR
"Once I find complete inner peace within myself and achieve a few big work goals then I'll be in the right headspace to share that with the right person."
I'm single because I'm chasing the dream and it means I'm away from home a lot. Long distance can really take its toll on a relationship. Last year, I was in Perth for a few months, then Brisbane, a few other Aussie states and on to the United States. Next month, I'm touring Australia with Rolling Thunder Vietnam and then working in Germany for a few months. Life moves at a rapid pace and you need to enjoy the company you have while you've got it. I've been single for seven months. I'd say my love life is pretty quiet right now but over the years I've had some doozy dates. When I was young, I was driving home from a date with my girlfriend at the time and she'd eaten something bad and suddenly vomited mid car trip. The only way was up from there. I need to become content within myself before I'm able to let someone in fully but in saying that, the unexpected is exciting. I don't want to put too much pressure on it. It'll happen.
Celeb crush: Ariana Grande. She's talented, beautiful and kind.
CARA KOENEN, 23, SUNSHINE COAST LIGHTNING PLAYER
"I'm over six foot tall, hopefully that's not a deal-breaker!"
I've been single for six months now - I blame the fact that Andy Samberg is already married! But honestly, I'm enjoying myself. I believe everything happens for a reason, so I don't think there's been "one that got away". There can be down sides to being single, like being the odd one out at two-for-one pizza night, but the positives make up for it - like ordering two pizzas for yourself and taking one home for later. Eventually, I'd love to find someone who is driven, passionate and who doesn't take themselves too seriously. In the meantime I've got netball, study, friends and my adorable dog, Lola. Dog beach date, anyone?
Celeb crush: Andy Samberg.
SHANE CHEN, 36, QUEENSLAND SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA'S LEAD VIOLINIST
"I learned some wonderful lessons from my previous marriage, I'll do things differently next time."
I'm a bit of a dreamer and a hopeless romantic so I'm definitely trying to find that someone special. I learnt a lot from my previous marriage. It is something worth celebrating, but sometimes marriage doesn't last a lifetime. Of course it's beautiful when it works out but there's no right or wrong in marriage. Each of my three daughters (Olivia, 13, Rachel, 11, and Hannah, 9) would have a different reaction in terms of me finding love. However, the most delicate would be Rachel, she's the most sentimental. I'd have to make sure they feel absolutely secure and comfortable with someone new. I'm learning to put myself out there. I'm giving the dating apps a go so I can meet new people but it's really hard. There's no denying it. I'm happy to be myself and just hope for the best. I've been single now for about a year and I'm ready to take a leap of faith and dive into something new.
Celeb crush: Scarlett Johansson in Black Widow.
BELESIA BWISENGO, 22, MUSICIAN/RETAIL ASSISTANT
"I think I'm the one that got away."
I'd love to find a good Christian boy who is funny, ambitious and will love and respect me for who I am. I've been single for about 10 months and enjoying life. I'm not really looking for love as such but if it finds me, I won't complain. I believe in fate. The best thing about single life is definitely learning to love myself to the fullest and being independent, especially when it comes to decision making. Making decisions for myself without worrying what my partner will say feels amazing. That being said, the single life can get lonely.
Celeb crush: Brad Pitt. He seems to be mature yet young at heart.
STEVEN OLIVER, 45, WRITER/PERFORMER/COMEDIAN
"What would your ex say about you? I'll ask him when I attend his wedding in Ireland later this year."
I'm finding love by singing top note, Ready for Love by India Arie. None of my neighbours have responded yet. One of them may have called out to me but I don't think, "Shut the bloody hell up" indicates they're keen. I'd love to find someone sexy. That to me usually means nerdy, caring, book/comic/movie enthusiast, empathetic, understanding, creative, musical, lover of life, deep thinker and a whole lot of other things relating to a person's being and actions rather than their looks. I need someone who challenges me. I wondered if I was too fussy, but I promised myself in my 20s, I won't be with someone for the sake of it. I don't want someone to fall for, I need someone to rise too.
Celeb crush: Hank Green if he was single and gay.
LORETTA RYAN, 54, ABC RADIO HOST
"There's no point hanging on to something that's not working; I have in the past, but I never will again."
Getting up at 3am every day for work can be tough on the social life. This is my 37th year in radio, I started at 17 so I've always been independent and focused on my work. It doesn't leave much time for other things. I've been dating on and off for a few years (more off than on!) and a standout date was one I went on with a lovely guy who I'm still friends with. We were saying our goodbyes in the car park and he was backing out. He was so nervous he didn't see the cement pole and crashed into it. He was so embarrassed. I felt so sorry for him but it was nice that he was nervous! I wouldn't say there was one that got away, I think it was more the relationships weren't right at that time in my life. Now I go to Bunnings every now and again looking for love (ha, joking but you never know?). I do, however, have a lot of love in my life with wonderful friends and family.
Celeb crush: Roger Federer.
OLLIE McCORMACK, 28, TV PRESENTER
"The downside of being single is when I'm trying to ride my tandem bicycle alone."
I'm still single because I've watched too many sappy rom-coms. They've given me an unrealistic expectation of dating and love. I'm a passionate and chaotic person so I'd describe my love life the same way. I once had my heart smashed to pieces but I'm fine and rebuilding my life like anyone my age would: by looking for love on Tinder. So far, it hasn't worked out. I've been single now for two years and counting. I think my exes would say I'm exhausting but loveable, so I'm hoping to find someone who can handle that. Dating can be fun and awkward. One of the more embarrassing dates was when I went to an all-you-can-eat Brazilian barbecue and after an hour of eating straight meat, I got chronic meat sweats. It was terrible. Bad dates aside, there are some bonuses to being single, I get to eat both meals when I order a two-for-one special. I'd love to find someone who is happy to eat takeaway and watch trashy reality TV at least four times a week.
Celeb crush: Any of the cast members from Netflix doco Cheer.
MEL BUTTLE, 38, COMEDIAN
"I had a girl come on a date to my house, she turned up in pyjamas and brought something of hers for me to sell on her behalf on Gumtree."
As Kanye West once rapped in his song Gold Digger, "I'm looking for the one have you seen her?" I've been single now for five months and it's probably because I'm very shy around new people. I forget names easily and find myself playing on my phone and wishing I was at home watching The Office with my dog instead. I've also quit drinking, so making an approach is now extra terrifying. I'd love to find someone who will compliment my cooking and ask how I made it but never for the recipe. I need someone who will let me listen to true crime podcasts as I fall asleep each night, that's non-negotiable. I guess I want someone genuine who has goals and dreams that we can work on together. Must love Hawaii.
Celeb crush: Amy Shark.
PITA TAUFATOFUA, 36, ATHLETE/YOUTH WORKER
"I'd love someone who isn't scared to take risks."
I've been so focused on reaching my goals that I haven't put much time into my dating life. I wrote my first book The Motivation Station, qualified for two Olympic Games (summer and winter) and learnt to ski in under a year to qualify for the Winter Olympics in cross country skiing. All those things aside, it's time to keep the balance and share my life with someone. Someone who isn't scared to climb the mango tree to get the sweetest mango on the highest branch; will strap on a snowboard and fly down the slopes. I like the people who talk about the things you shouldn't talk about. I've been single for over a year. I've found many people are OK in the good times but struggle with the tough times. Anyone can be great during easy times, but I like to see how people deal with tough times.
Celeb crush: Anyone who is looking to do their best in life.
CAT HENESEY-SMITH, 26, EX-BACHELOR CONTESTANT/BUSINESS OWNER
"My funniest dating story would be competing with 28 women for one man on a reality show."
I'm very recently back on the dating scene, my last relationship ended about a month ago. I'm young and ambitious and have so many things I want to achieve before settling down. I think trying to find love is the worst thing; love happens when you least expect it. All of my relationships served me a purpose at the time and none of my exes would be right for me now. But they would all say I'm fabulous, obviously. I'm enjoying being single. I can put myself first and do exactly what I want to do, when I want to do it. The downside though, is there's no one to watch Netflix with me when I'm hungover.
Celeb crush: Chris Hemsworth.
BEN ZABEL, 37, BRISBANE PERSONALITY
"I can fall in love with the person that checks my ticket, smiles at me in a crowd, or hands me a champagne at an event."
After my time on Big Brother (2013), my social life has gone through the roof. I'd easily be out over 200 nights a year attending different events or performing, but for some reason dating hasn't happened for me. Before television, no one took any notice of me. No one. But after television, everyone wanted a piece of me and my time. It's made me guarded when I meet new people. I always wait for someone else to make the first move, which often they never do. It's very difficult to know if people like you for you, or for what they've seen of you on the television or stage. As much as I appear joyful, I have days when I think if only I was different, I would have a partner. Being a child of divorce, I've asked myself a lot if I believe in marriage. Sometimes it seems unnecessary but I do believe in love and standing by the person you are committed too. I can be very easily infatuated. It's possible in one week that there can be 30 people "that got away".
Celeb crush: Ryan Reynolds. Gorgeous, funny and he loves Betty White!
WAVENEY YASSO, 26, PUB CHOIR GUITARIST
"Being single has taught me to be independent and I'm proud of what I've done for myself on my own."
There have been so many amazing opportunities working with Pub Choir, I couldn't imagine having time for another human. Last year, I spent more than 140 nights away from home! I really applaud those people and their partners who have incredible understanding in those situations. I think things happen for a reason. We can either choose to grow and learn from that or dwell on it and think "what if". My ex-girlfriend would say I'm the least affectionate person ever but also I'm a romantic and my gestures can be too big. We weren't right for each other but I'm glad I was able to learn from it. Dating apps are not for me, they're not my speed, they are way too fast-paced. I'm open to love and am ready for someone else to love me and vice-versa. Although, I might need lessons in flirting because that's a language that still seems foreign to me. Being single has really allowed me to focus on my career and creative projects. I can be selfish without impacting negatively on anyone and I can demand things from myself. Sometimes being single means you show up to things by yourself.
Celeb crush: Marlee Matlin, yes she's married with kids but what an inspiration!
MARK POWER, 39, ENTREPRENEUR
"The downside to being single is always having to sit in the middle seat on a plane."
My dog has just had puppies so I can't say I'm totally single, they're keeping me busy! Jokes aside, I'd love to find a partner to share the craziness with. Someone energetic, fun and who will let me watch the trailers instead of the actual movie. I absolutely believe in marriage. I admire couples who raise a happy family and travel and grow together. Sometimes, it's all in the timing. You never know where you might meet someone. It could be grabbing a falling lemon in the queue at Coles? Single life has been a brilliant way to focus and achieve goals which require sacrifices. I've built my own company across various fields: Organic Island, Goodwill Projects and Power Hotels.
Celeb crush: Michelle Monaghan.