Thousands of Viewers Vote to Make David Bromstad HGTV′S Newest Design Star
Miami-Based Artist and Designer Beats Nine Challengers To Win His Own Show on the Top-Rated Cable Network
After the paint dried and the dust from the renovations settled, David Bromstad emerged as the winner of the popular reality competition, HGTV Design Star. In just two and a half days, between Sunday, September 3 at 10 p.m. ET and Wednesday, September 6 at noon ET, viewers cast more than 630,000 votes via www.HGTV.com and mobile phone text messages to support their favorite of the show′s final two designers. During the season finale of the eight-episode series, Bromstad, 32, a Miami- based artist and designer, learned that he had captured the most viewer votes and the coveted prize -- his own show on HGTV.
Bromstad′s new show is expected to premiere in 2007. In the meantime, HGTV′s cameras will document his life-changing experiences as he makes his way from designer finalist to show host in a special four-episode series, Making of a Design Star, that is scheduled to air beginning Thursday, November 2 at 11 p.m. ET/PT.
As he and his remaining competitor, 31-year-old Alice Fakier of Temple, Texas, stood side by side in front of a live studio audience that included family and friends, HGTV president Judy Girard joined them on stage with the promised network contract. In the next moment, Clive Pearse, the show′s host, opened the envelope to reveal who had won the chance at television stardom.
"This is the best day of my life, hands down," said Bromstad. "I′m exhilarated, I feel like I′m in a dream! This is just unreal! It is exactly what I hoped for and wanted, but at the same time I knew I would have a hard time winning if it meant that Alice would be eliminated. She was a formidable competitor and I have tremendous respect for her work. It′s never easy to win at the expense of a friend."
Fakier, a gracious challenger throughout the competition, ceded the stage to Bromstad′s family and friends who eagerly rushed to offer him hugs and congratulations. She and Bromstad would later cling to each other, crying one last time as the competition came to its bittersweet conclusion. "I′m happy for David because he is such a good designer," said Fakier. "I said from the beginning that it would be fine if I lost this competition to someone who was exceptional. David is that person -- I′m honored to have worked with such a great talent."
In a surprise twist, Bromstad and Fakier, each conditioned to uncovering paint cans to find the next weekly design challenge, were presented with two final paint cans. However, when they opened them they found keys for two new SUVs -- a Mercury Mariner and a Mercury Mariner Hybrid. Both designers will be able to choose the preferred color and model of their new vehicle.
From the premiere on July 23 through last night′s season finale, the show generated stellar ratings and, according to Omniture, nearly 7.5 million page views on www.HGTV.com. The highly-anticipated season finale unfolded with a reunion of the show′s eight other finalists as well as with judges Martha McCully, the executive editor of In Style magazine, and renowned designer Vern Yip. As the finalists and judges reminisced and offered personal perspectives, they watched never-before-seen video highlights and bloopers from the competition.
HGTV Design Star premiered on Sunday, July 23 with an eclectic group of 10 finalists who represented various lifestyles and life stages, personalities and preferences, education and experience. The group included a former beauty pageant finalist and mother of two from Utah, as well as three Harvard graduates. Each week the competition in the top-rated show became more intense as the finalists were pushed to their limits in tough design challenges. For example, in one challenge, the finalists designed spaces using only items found in pet, beauty, camping or automotive stores; while in another challenge they designed using a single color -- yellow, blue, red or green -- as inspiration. Bromstad and Fakier each won a weekly design challenge before getting to the final stage of the competition. "We knew this was going to be an amazing competition that would resonate with our viewers," said James Bolosh, vice president, original programming, HGTV. "Our viewers have been very vocal about this show -- calling, writing and stopping us to tell us that they find it addictive. We love hearing that because, after all, we did promise them a great ride."