The Block NZ heats up: Four new teams take on the firehouse

Blockaholics, rejoice! The renovation rollercoaster that is The Block NZ returns to Kiwi screens on June 17, and the heat has been well and truly turned up.

This year, four teams will tackle five apartments set in a fire station in Kingsland, Auckland - a prime location overlooking Eden Park.

"The stakes are higher than ever and the expectation on every team to pull off luxury inner-city living is huge," says host Mark Richardson.

An entire new level was added to the top of the historic building, which was erected in 1930 and turned into a boarding house over 10 years ago.

Ready to transform the firehouse once more are four new DIY duos, eager to make a profit at auction and walk away with the $100,000 grand prize.  

So, without further ado, let's find out who is strapping on their tool belt this season.

Lisa and Chris, AKA Ribz

The Block NZ heats up: Four new teams take on the firehouse
Photo credit: MediaWorks

If confidence is key, Lisa, 37 (Ngai Tahu and Ngati Kahungungu) and Ribz, 34, believe they have what it takes to unlock success. Hailing from the capital, print technician Ribz is the self-described builder of the pair, while caterer Lisa excels on the decorating and shopping front.

Ribz says he's a no-regrets kind of guy whose strengths lie in his DIY skills, patience and hard-working attitude.What Lisa lacks in building expertise, she makes up for in honesty and speaking her mind.

Lisa and Ribz are the keystone of a busy three children and one dog family, and they admit being away from them will be a challenge. The couple have spent 10 years honing their skills, renovating and decorating their own home to perfection.

Most likely to fight about: "The 'Lisa is always right' situations."

Party trick: L - "I can walk on the knuckles of my toes." R - "My dance moves!"

Biggest fear about being on The Block: "No fear and no regurts!"

Will win it because: "We believe we will!"

Stacy and Adam

The Block NZ heats up: Four new teams take on the firehouse
Photo credit: MediaWorks

Studying at Massey University nine years ago resulted in two degrees and a relationship for Stacy and Adam. Social influencer Stacy runsher own design business and Adam works as a senior concept designer for Weta Workshop.

Adam knows his architecture, and says he can handle the lack of sleep that the show will bring, but will be relying on his practicality and composure to get him through the challenges. When Stacy isn't busy creating content, you can find her working for charities and volunteering for the SPCA.

The creative pair have previously dabbled in DIY on their own home with mixed results - they accidentally painted their house the wrong colour! With their designer eyes on the prize, the couple believe their ability to style and decorate will set them apart from the rest.

Most likely to fight about: S - "The finishing touches and where to spend money."

A - " we often have strong views about what direction we should take a design, sometimes it's hard to the see other person's point of view."

Party trick: Stacey has never missed a shot at beer pong.

Biggest fear about being on The Block: S - "I have a big uneasiness when it comes to heights, but also huge stage fright if there's a Block Stars this year!"

A - "I'm nervous that Stacy and my design aesthetic won't align with what the judges are looking for."

Will win it because: S - "We each have our own strengths we can play on."

A - " Stacy and I are a very strong team and couple. We are pretty resilient but also like to joke around and have a laugh."

Ethan and Sam

The Block NZ heats up: Four new teams take on the firehouse
Photo credit: MediaWorks

Ethan, 26, (Ngati Rereahu) and Sam, 27, (Ngati Rereahu and Ngati Maniapoto) hail from the mighty Waikato with Ethan living in Hamilton and Sam calling Te Kuiti home. Best friends from high school, builder Ethan and joiner Sam are trade-proud and eager to sink their teeth into the construction side of The Block, claiming the kitchen as their dream reno room.

Nail gun accident prone, Sam has had his fair share of building faux pas but claims that Ethan's DIY skills are a force to be reckoned with. While Ethan says that the pressure will be testing, the best friends are confident that their tradie skills, project-managing experience and fast-paced working style will live up to the high standards that they set themselves.

Sam spends can often be found hunting, diving and playing rugby. Hands on and hard-working, 'kind' is a word often used to describe him. Ethan, or 'Eats' as he's often called is proud of his dedication to building and likes spending his time away from the construction site travelling.

Most likely to fight about: E - "Who is better looking - obviously me." S - "Who is the most skuxXxest."

Party trick: Sam's crayfish-catching skills.

Biggest fear about being on The Block: "Not doing a good job and everyone sees it!"

Will win it because: E - "We have the experience when it comes to building."

S - "I like to work hard, never give up and always see the good in every situation."

Sophia and Mikaere

The Block NZ heats up: Four new teams take on the firehouse
Photo credit: MediaWorks

Turangi husband and wife duo Sophia, 31, and Mikaere, 32, (Ngati Tuwharetoa & Ngai Te Rangi) met at university 12 years ago and have been together ever since. Illustrator/chef and teacher/artist respectively, the couple say their artistic abilities will be put to good use on The Block, with their creativity and work ethic giving them an edge over the other teams.

When she's not cooking or illustrating and sewing for work, Sophia is gardening, exercising her love for colour and design in everything she does. Mikaere is an award-winning artist who has worked on countless community youth and art development programmes. 

Parents to a 10 year old daughter, they are no strangers to DIY, often taking on ultra-ambitious projects on their own home.

Most likely to fight about: "Navigating our way around Auckland in the traffic!

Party trick: "Too many to list."

Biggest fear about being on The Block: "Leaving with regrets, we are so excited about this once in a lifetime opportunity and want to make the most of it."

Will win it because: S - "We have a good eye for art and design!"

M - "We come from humble, hardworking backgrounds, and our combined artistic and creative talent will inspire a new way of approaching design on the block."

The Block NZ: Firehouse premieres on Three, Monday June 17 at 7:30pm and continues on Monday - Wednesday at 7:30pm and Sunday nights at 7pm.

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