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​The Votes Are In For Maree & James

With the conclusion of Season 10 of Three’s The Block NZ: Redemption, Suzuki would like to extend a huge congratulations to all the teams who revisited the show for their second chance at DIY success.

The biggest congratulations go to Maree & James Steele for taking out The People’s Choice Award for 2022! They’re looking right at home in their new Suzuki Vitara.

We decided to sit down with Maree & James to talk all things redemption, their opinion of the all new Suzuki S-Cross and what the future may hold for this husband and wife duo from South Auckland.

What were your reasons for coming back to The Block NZ for another season?

Maree - I most definitely have the DIY gene in me and coming back for me personally meant getting on the tools as well as learning a bit more about styling and designing spaces. Being on The Block NZ you have access to everything you need so while having professionals on hand I thought, why not take a bit of time to learn a few skills I could then take home and use on our personal spaces.

I have also been so consumed with motherhood since the last time we were on the show, so coming back was a chance to find myself again and remember that I’m more than just a Mum!

How did you find the experience on The Block NZ: Redemption this time around?

Maree - It was soooo much fun! Knowing what we were getting ourselves into really helped the process and understanding what it takes to build also made the process easier. I always felt very lucky to be on the show again and to have access to what we did. I also got to spend 12 weeks with my husband alone again – it had been a long time since it's just us doing something we both really enjoy.

James - Although it's definitely still hard, knowing the process meant we could have a bit more fun. We really enjoyed our time on the show and are really grateful to have had a second shot at it.

Were there areas on the show that were more rewarding the second time around - such as what you achieved design/decoration wise and the skills you learnt?

Maree - We knew coming into this season the market was declining, so we made sure we had a different mindset than last time. This time we focused on the budget, utilising sponsors as best we could and making the most of the opportunities in front of us – and of course HAVING FUN!

Learning how to tile and plaster have most definitely been my highlight as a lady tradie apprentice. We had such an awesome team who really supported me to learn. I’m so grateful to them for seeing my enthusiasm and letting me have a go. Last time we were 'Design Rookies’ and I really felt like we redeemed ourselves this time round.

This year saw the all new Suzuki S-Cross being used as the teams every day transport. What did you think of the S-Cross that you drove on The Block NZ this year?

James - We were amazed at all the features the car had.

Maree - I drove the car the most and I loved it! It was so good on petrol and super smooth to drive. I managed to fit so much in the back with the seats folded down and the heated seats were always a treat, especially after wet challenges. The larger screen and reversing cues were some of my favourite features. The 360 degree camera is a game changer!!! I was blown away by how you could see from a bird's eye view when reversing into spaces. That was cool.

Let’s talk about your prize - What does it mean to you having just won the Suzuki Vitara in the People’s Choice award? Where might you take the family in your new Suzuki Vitara?

Maree - We are still very blown away that we won People's Choice. It's not something we ever thought we’d be in the running for. When we read the comments people left, sharing why they voted for us it was very humbling. We are just so grateful people saw us for who we are, and appreciated seeing two hard working parents being brave and giving something a good go.

James - The kids love Rotorua so we definitely have to make a trip to the luge.

Maree - Trips to the beach this summer will also be a must!

James - Maybe we might be able to convince them to try something new and venture a little further....

What are your plans for the future – what’s next for Maree & James Steele?

James - Try and keep the creative juices flowing and get straight into a little home makeover for us and the kids. Our parents also need a bit of help so no doubt we will be keeping busy.

Maree - I think it’s time for a rest!!! It’s been a busy year for us. I look forward to just spending time with our kids. I personally will be focusing more on our hair salon and then working with James to do some home Reno’s. I’m pretty excited about this because it means I’ll get to be on the tools again.

Suzuki has been delighted to be involved in another great season of Three’s The Block NZ, helping contestants navigate their DIY journeys with everything from hauling paint to driving to challenges and everything in between.

Well done to all who were involved!