Taniya Nayak on How Season 4 of HGTV’s ‘Battle on the Beach’ Is Different


It’s summer! This usually means barbeques and fun in the sun. And for HGTV, it’s also time for another Battle on the Beach. With one win apiece, Taniya Nayak, Ty Pennington, and Alison Victoria look to one-up their fellow network stars with a victory in Season 4.

They’ll head to Oak Island, North Carolina to link up with the respective team each will mentor. The duos have six weeks using the biggest-ever budget of $100,000 to renovate similar four-bedroom, two-bathroom coastal properties initially sight-unseen. Every week focuses on another space with the winners receiving a $3,000 bonus.

Expert judges Bryan and Sarah Baeumler (Renovation Island) decide who receives the cash and wins the ultimate $50,000 prize. The one team who adds the most value to their home. Beyond the straightforward challenges, there are carnival-themed games, a relay race on a historic battleship, and these renovators having to maneuver through whatever unexpected twists.

For Nayak (Build it Forward), who teams with Samantha and Sean Kilgore of Richmond, Michigan, it’s about bragging rights. Here the Season 1 winner previews the heated competition to come.

Alison Victoria, Ty Pennington, and Taniya Nayak with judges Bryan and Sarah Baeumler in Battle on the Beach

Alison Victoria, Ty Pennington, and Taniya Nayak with judges Bryan and Sarah Baeumler in Battle on the Beach (HGTV)

Seeing you on The Great Christmas Light Fight and these HGTV shows, what do you enjoy more judging or competing? 

Taniya Nayak: That’s a good question. When we’re out on Battle on the Beach we’re mentors. Then on The Great Christmas Light Fight, I’m a judge alongside Carter Oosterhouse. To me, they can be similar. However, I like to be in a position to give encouragement, advice, and tough love if that’s the case. I also love building things out like I did on Restaurant Impossible for so many years. But yeah, I prefer being a judge.

You had the first winning team for Battle on the Beach. With everyone with a victory now, does it feel more competitive? 

Yeah, big time because the three of us are like siblings. We always have that competitive rivalry. It’s an even playing field again, so definitely there is a lot more competition this round. Although that first season was intense, but now it feels like it’s full circle again.

What have you taken from the past seasons in approach with the team you work with? 

It’s interesting because every year I’m really learning how I prefer to mentor. I think sometimes in the beginning I was a little aggressive, a little pushy maybe because I wanted to win so badly. Then I started to think that these teams coming in have talent. That’s why they‘re there. So, it’s our job as mentors to encourage them and see what they do with it. Sometimes we have to let go, no matter if we win or lose because it’s out of our control. We’re there to give advice. If they take it? Great. If they don’t, and it happens a lot, then they don’t. The outcome or consequences are ultimately theirs.

What did you think of the judges? 

They are lucky they are so nice. Those Canadians are so nice all the time, but they are tough. They are lovable, but so tough. They are so well respected because they come from a place of great experience. They know what they are talking about, so there are never any hard feelings. They will definitely say it like it is. You need that.

How was it working with your team, who had only flipped one house before this? Did you consider yourself the underdog going in? 

Yeah, for sure. Not only did they only flip one house, but it took them three years to do it. All the things that don’t make for the right competitive edge on this show are there, but they worked really hard, and I’m proud of my team. Without giving too much away, I’ll leave it at that.

Taniya Nayak in Battle on the Beach

HGTV

What can you say about the challenges they’ll face? 

This season I think the challenges are amped up. There are a lot more challenges involved, which I love because it takes everyone out of these stressful situations and getting outside a bit. You’re going to see challenges within challenges. There is the kitchen, main suite, bathroom. Along with those challenges, there are little ones to give them a chance to get a leg up on the competition. Maybe they get a little more money or an extra contractor to help them for a few hours. You never know what is going to happen. There are a lot of variables involved.

There are carnival games and relay races teased. Those do sound like fun distractions too after working on these houses day in and day out. 

It does give everyone a breather. I will tell you whenever we pull them out of their houses, it almost feels like the last thing they want to do is be pulled away from doing their work. It does give a reset button because everyone is laughing and having a good time. It’s a life lesson too. When things are getting hectic and crazy, it’s good to stop for a second and have fun. As for the games and relay races, we have a challenge producer who used to work on The Ellen DeGeneres Show. They definitely leveled up.

What stood out about Oak Island? 

It was so nice. For Alison and I, it meant no humidity. We had great hair days every day. That was a big one. Oak Island is so charming. We were eating seafood, which was off the charts. The area and people were so welcoming. Everyone was thrilled about us being there for the show. They were super awesome. I would definitely go back.

How has it been getting to know Alison and Ty so much as you’ve worked together on various projects for so long? 

We were instant besties. Ty is like a brother I never had. I love him. He is so silly and has the biggest heart. He is so genuine and so extremely talented. I absolutely love him. Alison and I are best friends. We travel together. She just came to visit me in Boston. I go to visit her in Chicago. There is such a synergy between the three of us that it really conveys on camera I believe. I think that is what makes the show fun to watch because while we are competing against each other, we’re laughing and having a great time. It’s a nice kickoff to summertime watching this show. It feels good.

Tell me about the rivalry though with bragging rights on the line. Do things get a little heated? 

For me, it’s the kitchen challenge. Alison is the kitchen queen. I love her dearly, but she loves to own the kitchen. All I want to do is win a kitchen challenge. For me, that’s the biggest challenge of this rivalry. I want to beat Alison at a kitchen challenge.

Taniya Nayak

HGTV

How much of a difference maker was having $100,000 to work with this season? 

You’d think it would be a big difference. I think we started with [$75,000] in Season 1. I know it sounds like a lot of money, but to do an entire house in six weeks and have to do everything from plumbing, electrical, flooring, siding, new doors, new windows, and sometimes new ceilings. Then all the furniture and staging, it goes very fast. Don’t forget about the trades too. They can’t do everything themselves. They have to hire someone. It eats up a huge piece of the budget. The pricing has gone up from three years ago. It almost feels on par with where we started.

How would you sum up the season? 

There is a lot of unexpected twists and turns. There is a deep layer of intense competition. Not only on the houses but the other challenges. All of it is fun. Everyone is having fun and friends at the end, but it is intense during. When they are in it, they are there to win. These competitors leave their lives for six weeks. They can’t go home. Some of them have families, jobs. Just other things going on in their lives. Can you imagine picking up and disappearing for six weeks and not even saying where they are? It’s a big commitment there. That’s why they are there to win. They are not there to play. Alison, Ty, and I are having fun, but it’s their competition to win. There is a lot at stake. It’s $50,000 plus to walk away with. That’s a big amount of money, especially in a six-week time frame. They put their heart and soul into it. You’re going to see tears, blood, and a lot going on.

Where would you want to see Battle on the Beach go next? 

Take me to St. Thomas, St. Barts, Bahamas, French Riviera, Mykonos, line them up.

Battle on the Beach Season 4 premiere, June 3, 9/8c, HGTV





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