Motel renovations are the latest trend in oversized remodeling living rooms


When it comes to renovation shows, streaming services are thinking big.

Not content only with the low-stakes home renovations of “Fixer Upper”, “Flip or Flop”, “Love It or List It” and “Dream Home Makeover”, Magnolia Network (available on its own app, and Discovery +) and Netflix offer viewers oversized property makeover shows that amplify the genre of home improvement programming.

Magnolia’s “Homework“Tells the story of Utah-based Candis and Andy Meredith’s journey to transforming a 20,000 square foot school into their dream home.”Auberge Les Travaux“follows Lindsey Kurowski as she restores the 12-cabin Oak Knoll Lodge in Big Bear Lake, Calif., and each episode of” (re) motel “highlights a motel owner’s transformation of their property.

And Netflix’s “Motel Makeover” (now streaming), focuses on friends and business partners April Brown and Sarah Sklash as they invigorate a dated property in Sauble Beach, Ont. It’s a second location for their June Motels brand, which offers its customers Instagram-worthy backdrops, rosé, and lots of millennial rose.

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“There’s some drama that comes with a makeover of this size, and who doesn’t watch a show for a little bit of drama?” Sklash said. “Our previous motel had 16 rooms; it was 24 rooms, so (you) are making decisions that you aren’t going to make once, but you have to love that decision 23 more times,” she says.

“Everything is on a much bigger scale, and for us that made it very difficult. We didn’t do something of that size – the rooms, the pool, the indoor / outdoor restaurant and the shop. C ‘was a lot. “

Home improvement shows are a popular draw. Nine of last year’s 30 most popular unscripted series for women aged 25 to 54 were HGTV shows like “celebrity debt recognition, “” Return 101 with Tarek El Moussa “,” Help! I Wrecked My House ”and“ Extreme Makeover: Home Edition, ”according to Nielsen data.

Excluding 24-hour news networks, HGTV was the most watched cable network of 2020. The May debut of “Home Town Takeover,” in which Ben and Erin Napier built more than 12 homes, businesses and Spaces in Wetumpka, Alabama, have garnered more than 6.5 million viewers.

Brown says shows like “Motel Makeover” can tap into this desire to build a life off the beaten track.

“There’s something about being a bit of a millennial dream,” she said, “giving up the office and buying that inn or that motel or whatever and running out of town and doing something. creative thing with your hands … It’s really cool that there’s more content like that out there. ”

Joanna gaines, Creative Director at Magnolia Network, says she felt “naturally drawn” to large-scale makeovers.

“This is the kind of programming we’ve always envisioned for the network – stories of passionate people doing inspiring things,” she said via email. “I know for us these shows served as timely reminders of what makes life so beautiful: family, adventure and possibility. When you hear these stories and watch how they play out, you can’t help but want to go out and create or experience something special for yourself.

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Lindsey Kurowski poses in front of the cabins at the Oak Knoll Lodge, a property in Big Bear Lake, Calif., Which she is restoring for "In the works," streaming on the Magnolia and Discovery + applications.

“Inn The Works” star Kurowski also hopes viewers leave feeling encouraged.

“None of this is easy, but it is doable,” she says. “To all those people who say to you, ‘Oh, you can’t. You can’t. You this -‘ You can! You absolutely can! Is that easy? No. Thought? Yeah.”

For Season 2, Kurowski is redeveloping a 9-acre motel in New Ashford, Massachusetts that is three times the size of his Big Bear property.

“I’m dealing with 20 motel rooms, four cabins probably 1,200 square feet, then at the back of the property I have 24 other rooms that have suffered significant damage – like (the) roof collapsing “she said. said.

As to where renovation shows will go from here, the networks may follow Kurowski’s motto: “Be bold or be nothing.”

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