Road to 'Renovation Island': How Bryan and Sarah Baeumler Met and Landed Their Hit Show

See what happened before the family moved to renovate a whole resort.

You may know the Bauemlers from their hit HGTV show Renovation Island where viewers follow the married couple as they restore an abandoned resort, but how much do you know about the family? From their first meeting to their first date, learn more about how the couple fell in love before eventually moving to San Andros in the Bahamas.

1991: The Baeumlers meet but it isn’t love at first sight just yet

According to TRNTO, Bryan and Sarah met in high school but didn’t start dating until 10 years later. They stayed connected throughout university and their post-graduate programs. Fast forward to 2001 — Bryan and Sarah were copied in the same email by a friend which spurred them to start talking again. They decided to meet and grab coffee and, as the saying goes, the rest was history!

2001: The Baeumlers’ Romantic First Date

As for their first date, Bryan went with the classic dinner-and-a-movie. According to Sarah, Bryan “pulled out all the stops” for the romantic night. He took Sarah to see The Lion King theatre production and then to a sushi restaurant.

2004: The Proposal

The proposal Bryan had thought of for Sarah didn’t exactly go as planned. During a trip to visit Bryan’s family in Nova Scotia, he planned on proposing to her during a scenic hike overlooking the ocean. Unfortunately, he had chosen a day that was extremely foggy and the proposal was postponed. Then, on the drive back home, they got a flat tire. Talk about a series of unfortunate events! Luckily, Bryan waited until later in the night to propose and all the mishaps from earlier in the day were forgotten.

2004: The Wedding

Bryan and Sarah tied the knot on Sept. 3, 2004, at the Graydon Hall Manor in Toronto. While they had planned for a honeymoon by the ocean, Bryan and Sarah had to cancel their bookings for a beach house because of an unexpected hurricane that hit the coast of Florida. Instead, they went on a last-minute honeymoon to Vegas!

2006 - 2013: The Baeumler Children

Bryan and Sarah have four kids — Quintyn, Charlotte, Lincoln, and Josephine. Currently, Quintyn, who is 15, attends a boarding school The three younger children are enrolled in a local Bahamian school, Sarah says via an interview with House Beautiful.

2007 - 2016: The Baeumlers on TV

While Bryan’s first job was running an air-cargo business, he quickly transitioned into hosting home renovation shows, displaying his talent as a contractor. Even before Renovation Island, Bryan and Sarah were familiar faces to viewers as they both starred in multiple TV shows from 2007.

His first act on TV was hosting Disaster DIY which aired on HGTV Canada from 2007 to 2011. The show followed Bryan as he trained “D-I-Y”ers who had attempted and failed to renovate their homes themselves.

In 2010, Bryan got another deal with HGTV to film his family’s life in a reality TV show called House of Bryan. The show, which starred Bryan, Sarah and their four children, provided viewers a glimpse into the construction of the Baeumlers’ three homes: Bryan’s dream house, his country cottage and his “forever home.”

The show was a huge success and became HGTV Canada’s highest-rated series in over 10 years. In 2012, Bryan starred in a new show called Leave It To Bryan. Airing from January 2012 to 2017, it centered around Bryan giving advice to homeowners on what kinds of renovations were most needed in their homes as opposed to the ones they desired.

Bryan Inc. premiered in 2016, replacing House of Bryan in HGTV’s scheduled lineup. Sarah starred on the show along with Bryan and viewers followed the duo as they selected and flipped houses for profit.

2017: The Start of 'Renovation Island'

A family vacation to the Bahamas turned into so much more when Bryan and Sarah took an enormous leap of faith and decided to spend $2 million on purchasing an abandoned resort located in San Andros, Bahamas. They had an ambitious dream of turning the deteriorating resort into a beautiful vacation spot.

Formerly called the Emerald Palms Hotel, the resort featured 18 rooms, 22 villas and included a restaurant, spa and bar. After their risky purchase, Bryan uprooted his entire family and moved to the small tropical island in an adventure reminiscent of Swiss Family Robinson.

While initially expecting to invest around $4 million, the couple quickly realized the 1960s resort was in such bad shape that renovating it would cost far more than that they ended up investing around $10 million to complete their vision of restoring the resort to glory.

2019 - 2021: Renovation Island

Fans followed Sarah and Bryan through Season 1 of Renovation Island as they worked tirelessly to renovate the Emerald Palms Hotel and turn it into a luxurious, eco-friendly resort newly dubbed Caerula Mar Club. The show, which premiered on HGTV Canada in April 2019, was an instant success and broke multiple rating records.

The journey to success wasn’t without its challenges in September 2019, Hurricane Dorian hit the Bahamas. While San Andros didn’t bear the brunt of the damage, the natural disaster affected many of Bryan and Sarah’s friends and employees. They set up a GoFundMe and ended up raising $180,000 for the communities impacted by the hurricane, exceeding their initial goal of $10,000.

Then, in March 2020 (a mere six weeks after the grand opening of Caerula Mar Club), the world was hit by a global pandemic. Bryan and Sarah were forced to close the resort and postpone the opening as they dealt with the consequences that COVID-19 thrust on their dream project. Season 2 of Renovation Island follows the duo as they cope with what the pandemic means for their new resort and put all their focus on the grand reopening.

Season 2 of Renovation Island premiered on June 20 at 8/7c and fans of the Baeumler family can also watch ten all-new episodes on discovery+. For more of the latest updates on the show, you can also follow @hgtv or @caerulamar on Instagram.

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