'Renovation Island' on HGTV: 5 things you didn't know about Bryan and Sarah Baeumler
Think of 'Fixer Upper' on the beach as you watch the couple refurbish a resort on a distant island in the HGTV show
If you don't like Bryan and Sarah Baeumler, we'll presume you haven't seen 'Renovation Island.' The HGTV series follows the duo as they remodel a resort on a distant island — like 'Fixer Upper' but on a seaside.
The Baeumlers converted an old, deteriorating hotel into a luxury resort in the first season of 'Renovation Island,' a task made more difficult by the devastation caused by Hurricane Dorian, which struck the Bahamas in 2019. According to Bryan, the resort was in the "right state of disrepair and at the right price." Prior to the renovations, the family had spent time getting to know their new island home. "There's such a rhythm to this island and so much personality. More than anything, I just started to feel more grounded," Sarah said.
While the Baeumlers were able to open their resort, Caerula Mar, called after the cerulean blue sea, they suffered a setback during the COVID-19 pandemic. "The hotel was full, there was energy in the air, then COVID hit," Bryan later told the Toronto Sun. "The place may have been closed, but the work does not stop," Sarah continued. Of course, the task did not stop there. But first, let's meet the pair behind the renovation show.
A 'Renovation Island' spin-off is in development
If you've followed along as the Baeumlers negotiated the twists and turns of developing a resort from the ground up on the Island of Bryan, or Scott altered Canadian rental properties on 'Scott's Vacation House Rules,' then grab your hard hats and prepare for the mash-up of your dreams. That's right, Bryan Baeumler and Scott McGillivray are teaming up for an all-new HGTV Canada show called 'Renovation Resort,' which will debut in Spring 2023.
Bryan gives a helping hand to Scott's freshly purchased lakeside resort in this seven-part competition series. There's only one problem: It is in shambles! The two house renovation veterans will mentor four outstanding contractor-designer teams as they compete to bring this long-forgotten fishing lodge back to life, one cabin at a time. Bryan and Scott will bring in special guest judges to monitor each makeover while providing expert advice and chuckles along the way.
Baeumlers had to acclimate to island life
While the Baeumlers are certainly living in paradise, whether in the Bahamas or Florida, life on the island had "been an adjustment" for the family, who had previously lived in Canada. Sarah told People about some difficulties associated with the latter location. "Stores are small and don't always carry the variety we used back home," she said, adding, "If we run out of milk, we can't always get to the store to get more; sometimes we need to wait a week until the next ship arrives, so we drink water or juice." However, the mother of four explained why these changes were beneficial to her family. "It actually reduces stress because you start to realize that you don't need everything instantly available at your fingertips to survive and be happy," she said.
Nevertheless, the island has made their task more difficult due to logistical issues. Bryan explained that they have only had a few small planes and ships to transport their materials. "If we're missing something, it's either not coming for a few weeks, or we need to charter an airplane at a great expense to get it here," he added.
Important decision made within minutes
Bryan and Sarah Baeumler didn't seem to think about buying and renovating a Bahamas property for long. While many people would worry over whether to uproot their families and go to another nation, the Baeumlers evidently made their decision in a matter of minutes. Sarah told People how they initially became acquainted with the Bahamas. "We have a property in the Florida Keys where we keep our boat, and we have made quite a few trips over the Bahamas," she explained. She elaborated on why they choose Andros in particular. She said, "Every trip, Bryan is always scouring the charts for new places to explore. Andros (known as the Sleeping Giant) always caught our attention because it's by far the largest, yet least developed Island in the Bahamas."
Sarah also revealed how the pair discovered the resort. "During our trip, we were shown the old 'Emerald Palms' hotel," she stated. "I think it took about 5 minutes of touring the hotel until we all looked at each other and said, 'Let's do this!' Bryan looked at me and I could tell by the look in his eyes that this was something he wanted to do," Sarah told the Toronto Sun.
Outside the physical building, the surroundings indicated that they were in the proper place to begin planning. Sarah said, "Mother Nature is doing all the talking. The color of the ocean is absolutely exquisite. ... There's no competing with those shades."
Baeumlers enrolled their children in Bahamian school
The Baeumlers have four kids, Quintyn, Charlotte, Lincoln, and Josephine, whom they started raising on the secluded island alongside the resort rehabilitation project. With that came the responsibility of educating them, which Bryan and Sarah took upon themselves at one point, as per House Beautiful. Nevertheless, as seen on 'Renovation Island,' after the development of the resort began and the couple's schedules grew more hectic, they thought it was best to enroll Charlotte, Josephine, and Lincoln in a regional Bahamian school.
Their eldest, Quintyn, is studying at a boarding school away from the island. While the family didn't get to see the teenager on a daily basis as they had in the past, Sarah stated on the show that Quintyn was only a 20-minute plane journey away from South Andros, so they could still see each other frequently.
The Baeumlers' domicile may now be in Florida, but it appears that while the children weren't in school, they took advantage of the island's natural beauty, as Sarah uploaded photographs on Instagram of Lincoln feeding ducks, Jojo on chicken coop duty, and Quintyn caring for horses.
It appears that the choice to open a resort was also influenced by the children. "We really wanted to create a place where our family would want to spend time," Bryan told People. And it looks like the mission was successful.
Bryan and Sarah have previously rehabilitated challenging projects
The 'Renovation Island' Bryan and Sarah Baeumler have extensive experience redeveloping the property and appearing on television. The pair previously appeared on DIY's 'House of Bryan,' in which fans watched as the family demolished their bungalow to build their dream home. Bryan also appeared on 'Leave It to Bryan,' where he aided homeowners with home renovations, and 'Disaster DIY,' where he assisted others who made mistakes while performing their own home repairs.
Bryan is a qualified contractor who says he learned his trade from his father, an aeronautical engineer. Bryan began his own handyman business when he was 14 years old.
Sarah works as a project manager for the company and has featured as an interior designer on a few of Bryan's shows. Sarah was in charge of developing the resort for this specific Bahamas project. She was tasked with designing 18 hotel rooms and 22 villas, as well as a spa, bar, restaurant, and clubhouse for Caerula Mar. According to The List, Bryan added, "This is the biggest change our family has faced and the largest project we've ever taken on." However, it is evident that these types of modifications are something they can tackle, and at the end of the day, they welcome the opportunity. According to Sarah, "Most people work 51 weeks a year, so they can spend one week in paradise. We're here every day!"
New episodes of HGTV's 'Renovation Island' will premiere on Sunday, July 24, at 9 pm ET. Discovery+ will also have access to the eight-episode season.