Sara Vale on her and Hayden’s home renovation and life after winning The Block 2018

Hayden and Sara walked away as winners of The Block 2018 with a total of $645,000 in prize money.

Since then the couple has used those funds to renovate their dream home in the beachside suburb of Stanwell Park in New South Wales.

While the project is not yet complete — with a bathroom and landscaping left to finish — you wouldn’t know it looking at the stunning interior transformation.

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Hayden and Sara stayed in a rental property down the road while the building work was done, and were able to move in and enjoy the new space during the coronavirus pandemic when restrictions kept us mostly at home.

“It actually feels like we’re on a holiday every single day. When you feel like that in the home you love that’s the perfect combination,” Sara told 9Entertainment.

The Block 2018 winners Hayden and Sara with their children Lawson and Harlow. (instagram)

The home renovation features a mix of urban, coastal and nature influences reflective of the local area, which includes ocean views and a rainforest escarpment.

“We made the palette quite neutral, but we do have the deep ocean blue for our joinery. We’ve got that for upstairs and the kitchen area, we’ve also got that in the laundry, and our walk in robe and also downstairs is dark grey,” Sara said.

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“The reason we did that was because if we were to sell our house — mind you, we don’t want to sell our house — it would be just a general calming palette throughout the entire house. Then someone wouldn’t need to come in and change the joinery it would be like a lick of paint for them if they wanted to change anything on the walls.”

Hayden and Sara The BlockThe kitchen is next to a balcony where Hayden and Sara can enjoy beautiful escarpment views. (supplied)

Hayden and Sara’s home also has a striking ceiling, which was a highlight of the project for the Hayden.

“The raked ceiling was by far the best part of the build for me. I was really experimenting and pushing myself design-wise, but it worked out really well. I used Gyprock Supaceil plasterboard on all our ceilings, including the raked ceiling, and the finish is sleek and stylish,” he said.

Hayden and Sara The BlockHayden and Sara went neutral and industrial with coastal and nature influences for their reno. (supplied)

Sara has a different favorite feature, which comes as a surprise to both Hayden and herself.

“I am absolutely loving my laundry. I never knew that I could be in love with a laundry space so much, and there’s nothing extravagant about our laundry or anything like that but its got literally everything you need in it,” Sara explained.

“It’s a small space but we’ve made it look extremely large… because we’ve been able to open up the space by using the mirror as a splashback it’s become the most calming place in the house — I really enjoy it.

“Don’t get me wrong, I also enjoy the master suite because I designed the entire thing. So, I love our bedroom and ensuite and our adjoining walk-in-robe, but the next best space would have to be the laundry for me.”

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Hayden and Sara The BlockSara loves the master suite but admits the laundry reno turned out so well it’s her favorite room now. (supplied)

Hayden and Sara’s children Harlow and Lawson also have gorgeous new rooms from the renovation.

These spaces feature a softer palette, with pops of color through furniture and home décor, such as the yellow bedding in Harlow’s room.

And to ensure a quiet and peaceful space for both parents and kids, the couple used Gyprock Superchek and Supaceil plasterboard on the walls and ceilings to reduce sound transmission between rooms.

Hayden and Sara The BlockHarlow’s room features calming colors with a splash of fun yellow. (supplied)

With the renovation mostly finished, and COVID-19 restrictions eased, life is relatively back to normal for Hayden and Sara.

Hayden is flat-out with building work, while Sara has returned to the skies working as a flight attendant. The pair also collaborate on building projects for clients with Hayden looking after the building side and Sara doing the interior design.

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Sara continues to be recognized from her appearance on The Block 2018 but she’s recently also found fame as “TikTok’s favorite flight attendant”.

“During COVID I dabbled a little on TikTok and my TikTok has kind of blown up a bit. So now whenever I’m on the plane I get, ‘Oh wow you’re Sara from The Block and also TikTok, so people are starting to re-recognize me I guess you could say,” she laughed.

Hayden and Sara are still good friends with the other Block teams from the 2018 season. Most of them reunited in May last year for Spence’s 50th, but Western Australian couple Courtney and Hans were unable to make it due to border closures.

Sara is hoping all five teams will be able to catch up this year to celebrate Hayden’s 50th birthday.

Hayden and Sara winners of The Block 2018Hayden and Sara celebrate winning The Block with the other contestants after the 2018 auctions. (Sara and Hayden are the winners of The Block 2018 / Nine)

But don’t expect to see the couple return to compete on The Block as All Stars anytime soon, though Sara is open to coming back in a different capacity.

“It would be fun, but I don’t think they would pick us because we already won. So for us we don’t have anything to prove… I would never say no to doing a guest appearance on The Block, we love those guys, we love working with them,” she said.

Sara did however tease the possibility of another non-building related TV project, though is keen to enjoy spending time with family in her newly renovated property.

“There’s a couple of things that might be in store for us for 2022,” she hinted.

“But just really looking forward to the future and being able to relax in our home and settling down properly, and getting back into the swing of things because we’ve not stopped since 2018.”


Inside Hayden and Sara’s apartment


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