The Block
The Block "Blocktagon" contestants Kingi and Caro. Channel 9

The highs and lows of The Block’s first room reveals

A BUDGET blunder saw Kingi and Caro get off on the wrong foot on The Block tonight.

The Townsville parents were heavily penalised for going over the $3000 budget of the 24-hour bedroom challenge, used to determine which teams will renovated which floors of South Yarra's eight-story former Hotel Saville.

The challenge, which saw the teams trekking up and down 100 stairs from the ground floor to their rooms, was a steep learning curve for most of the teams.

Kingi and Caro were given the lowest score for their incomplete room, which featured old furniture for the hotel upcycled to make up for the budget blow out on their timber feature wall.

"That is breaking the rules and also disrespecting the other teams," judge Shaynna Blaze said.

The couple took the criticism on the chin, and promised host Scott Cam he wouldn't have to bail them out again.

"I think we've seen worse today… at least I'm seeing a glimmer of something in here," Neale Whitaker said.

"They've created an ambiance, a warmth."

Caro and Kingi in a scene from The Block
Caro and Kingi examine the plans for their first-floor apartment on The Block. Martin Philbey

That "worse" room belonged to Andrew and Whitney, who failed to finish their room or even the painting of their feature colour.

Upon entering the room, Blaze broke out into the giggles.

"What were they thinking?" she said.

"What scares me the most is these guys have a whole apartment to do."

Whitaker called it the worst room he'd ever seen in a Block challenge.

"It's like they've gone to a skip to get everything. That's what it feels like," he said.

Block super fans Dean and Shay showed they'd learned from all their hours watching the show, coming first in the challenge and nabbing the coveted penthouse apartment.

The Block
Dean and Shay are the team to beat in the coveted penthouse apartment. Martin Philbey

Second-chance contestants Luke and Ebony placed second, while Gold Coast mums Suzi and Vonni were surprised to come third for their unfinished room.

 "There's just enough in here to hook me," Whitaker said.

"I'm already thinking I would love to see what these girls do if they got another 24 hours."

Once the apartments were assigned, each team given budget of $150,000 cash to be used along with sponsor vouchers.

But the teams were thrown another curve ball when they were told the first room they'd be renovating was the main bathroom, unlike a guest bedroom as in previous seasons.

Only hours into their renovations, some teams had already made controversial decisions.

Shay and Dean plan to not have a door to their main bathroom, while Andrew and Whitney want to install a glass bathtub.

The Block
Whitney and Andrew are struggling with the demands of The Block. Martin Philbey

Site foreman Keith Schleiger discouraged the idea, calling it a tacky swimming pool.

He then had to chastise the couple for spending their entire first day shopping together while their room sat idle.

Renovation will continue on the show this week with the finished rooms to be delivered on Sunday.


The Blocktagon pecking order

Dean and Shay - 27/30, fifth floor apartment

Luke and Ebony - 24/30, fourth floor apartment

Suzi and Vonni - 20/30, third floor apartment

Andrew and Whitney - 7/30, second floor apartment

Kingi and Caro - 5/30, first floor apartment