TV show highlights Nanaimo

A new fantasy TV show is highlighting Nanaimo's real estate market and beautiful natural surroundings for potential homebuyers from across Canada and possibly even the world.

Realtor Troy Gibson shows the interior of a Nanaimo townhouse that will be featured in an episode of Live Here

A new fantasy TV show is highlighting Nanaimo’s real estate market and beautiful natural surroundings for potential homebuyers from across Canada and possibly even the world.

Live Here, Buy This! takes Canadian couples on an armchair tour of three destinations that meet their lifestyle and budget criteria. The show will be aired on HGTV Canada sometime next spring.

TV crews tour two houses in each destination and show off some of the attractions each location boasts that fit the couple’s lifestyle.

The couples, who are not ready to buy, do not go to the places featured in the show but at the end of each episode, they are asked which house and location captured their hearts.

Troy Gibson, with Re/Max of Nanaimo, took film crews to two new townhouse developments earlier this month, one in the Old City Quarter and one in the north end.

Gibson picked the two developments based on information from the show’s coordinators about the family – a young couple living in downtown Toronto with a five-year-old child. The couple enjoys city life and culture, but is looking for something a bit more laid back.

Gibson chose the Old City Quarter development for its proximity to downtown and the harbour, and highlighted the natural attributes of the north-end development, including panoramic views and proximity to parks, for camera crews.

“I think it will open up some people’s eyes to what Nanaimo has to offer,” he said. “It’s a great opportunity for Nanaimo to get some international exposure.”

Chelsea Barr of Destination Nanaimo said the publicity is great for the city, especially since it’s a positive show that will feature the bright points of living in the Harbour City.

“It’s just a great marketing piece that we could have never paid for to reach that many people,” she said.

Vyvyan Campbell, president of JV Productions Inc. and executive producer of the new show, said the program will likely be aired on an American TV channel and possibly overseas, as well HGTV.

For the first season, the company is profiling Canadian couples and their fantasies, but the second season might open the show to couples in other countries, she said.

Camera crews are travelling the world searching for dream houses for these couples, Campbell added, including England, France, Thailand, Argentina, Italy and Portugal.

“It’s so interesting to compare what your house is worth to what the rest of the world has to offer you,” she said. “Everybody has a fantasy of where they would like to live.”

The couples usually come up with one or two of the destinations featured on the episode and the show’s researchers throw in the other option or two that fits with price point and lifestyle.

“Sometimes they are really amazed with what we come up with,” said Campbell. “It’s purely entertainment, it’s purely fantasy.”

Past JV Productions shows include Selling New York and Big City Broker.

For more information, Live Here, Buy This! has a Facebook page.