"We always had an eye for each other," the Southern Charm star said
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Paige DeSorbo, Craig Conover
Credit: Paul Morigi/Getty; Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty

Craig Conover has found his snow angel.

The Southern Charm star is dating his Winter House costar Paige DeSorbo — and Conover tells PEOPLE their relationship has been a long time coming.

"We both had a crush on each other from three years ago when I came to the Hamptons for Kyle [Cooke's] birthday party," he says of his brief appearance on an episode of Summer House, adding that the two were never single at the same time. "We always had an eye for each other."

But after starring together in the upcoming Bravo spinoff Winter House  — which sees casts members from Southern Charm and Summer House living together in Vermont — Conover says their friendship "naturally" evolved into a romance.

"It was done in a healthy way. We built a friendship and got to know each other first, and it all happened naturally," he says. "You see the foundation of our relationship start to form on the show."

Conover and DeSorbo were first linked over the summer after they were photographed out in New York City and Charleston, S.C., together, though they claimed they were "just friends" at the time.

Paige DeSorbo and Craig Conover
Credit: PGA Tour

Conover says the couple made a conscious decision to keep the start of their relationship out of the public eye before finally confirming their romance last month.

"It confuses me when people didn't think it was real or that we were hanging out for publicity," he says. "If it wasn't real then I'd be posting about it. I haven't posted a single thing about it because it's so real."

But now that the news is out, he says they are excited to start sharing their love with the world.

"We are pretty happy now," he says. " I don't think either of us has ever dated someone else in the industry. We get each other, it's nice. We really are each other's biggest fans, which is something that I've always looked for."

"It'll be fun to share our lives with everyone," he adds.

Winter House premieres Wednesday on Bravo.