The sun’s shining in Barbados, but A$AP Rocky and Rihanna are keeping it cozy! HL learned EXCLUSIVELY why Rihanna decided to invite her rumored flame to spend the holidays in her hometown.

A$AP Rocky raised eyebrows when he was spotted arriving at the airport in Barbados on December 23, luggage in hand. Barbados, of course, is the homeland of his rumored flame, Rihanna. Was he on the Caribbean island to spend the holidays with the Barbadian beauty? HollywoodLife has learned EXCLUSIVELY from a source close to the Fenty designer that she, in fact, invited him to spend Christmas together at her secluded coastal villa.

Rihanna’s friends are more than thrilled for her, the source told HL. “It’s a huge sign of how happy she is with him. Rihanna is all about family so the fact that she invited him is very meaningful,” they explained. “Her friends are taking this a sign that she’s getting serious with him.” Rihanna and A$AP have been close pals for years, and have dodged romance rumors for that entire time. But it wasn’t until late November that the stars aligned, and the twosome were spotted grabbing a cozy dinner together in Manhattan.

The dinner came nearly a year after fans were sure A$AP and Rihanna were together. The two were spotted hanging out together the same day news broke that Rihanna split from her boyfriend of three years, Saudi billionaire Hassan Jameel in January 2020. HollywoodLife learned at the time that A$AP and Rihanna were just close friends at the time — nothing romantic at all. Rihanna didn’t want to jump into another relationship so quickly. But, a year has passed.

Fans knew something was up when photos of A$AP in Barbados surfaced. Rihanna arrived in her home country just days prior, a lucky fan revealed when they posted a video on December 20 of the “Umbrella” singer at a “random gas station” on the island. She had traveled home via private jet (A$AP flew commercial). HollywoodLife also spoke to a source close to the “Fashion Killa” rapper, who said “there was no way” A$AP was going to miss spending the holidays with Rihanna.

“They had plans all along for him to join her. [A$AP] just had to tie up a few loose ends before flying out,” the source told us EXCLUSIVELY. “He’s so excited to spend their first Christmas together. He’s had a thing for Rihanna for a few years now, and he’s so happy things have come full circle. Although this year has been tough for everybody, he’s so grateful to be ending it on such a high note by celebrating with Rihanna by his side.”

HollywoodLife reached out to A$AP Rocky and Rihanna’s reps for comment but did not hear back as of press time.