The block is over | Girls vs Boys

The Block NZ is a wrap for another season. There was much excitement in our household last night as we watched the live auction. Before I get to that though, let's have a quick look at the very last room reveal for the season. Just when the teams thought they had finished renovating, Mark announced one last challenge - House 5. The house was divided up and spaces were allocated to the teams. As the winners, Sam and Emmett had the enviable task of choosing the auction order.

Sam and Emmett - Bedroom + Ensuite: 1st place - 18.5 points (9.5 points from Fiona and 9 points from Paul)

The judges obviously loved the boy's master bedroom and ensuite. It was certainly a far cry from their very first bedroom in week 1. There was a subtle sophistication with a slight masculine edge.

Niki and Tiff - Kitchen, Dining + Guest Bedroom: 2nd place - 16.5 points (8.5 points from Fiona and 8 points from Paul)

I really liked seeing the girls present a different style to their Block house. The kitchen and dining had a modern retro feel. I love the black subways laid vertically, and the chairs were cool, albeit the table a bit too small for the space.

The guest bedroom was beautiful and very feminine. Those pendant lights are gorgeous, and the colour palette is simple and pretty, inspired by the artwork.

Dyls and Dylz - Main Bathroom, Garage + Laundry: 3rd place - 15.5 points (7.5 points from Fiona and 8 points from Paul)

I don't understand why D+D decided to copy N+T's tribal style in this bathroom. It was similar to the girls' style but not as good (in my opinion).

Their garage and laundry was similar to their own Block house, so it was good, but a bit lazy from a design aspect, I thought. This house was a chance to embrace a different look.

Emma and Courtney - Living Room, Entrance + Stairs: last place - 15 points (7 points from Fiona and 8 points from Paul)

I loved seeing some colour in the girls' living room. The blue of the sofa is gorgeous and works really well with the tan leather chair.

I recognise that console table in the entrance from E+C's Block house, so, once again, it was a shame they didn't try something new. The fact that the teams managed to complete this house in one week though is pretty incredible.

Choosing to have their Block house auctioned last, well and truly paid off for Sam and Emmett. Their profit of $380,000 over the reserve price (the largest profit in The Block NZ history) crowned them the winners of The Block Girls vs Boys. As the winners they received an extra $100,000 bringing their total to $480,000 - amazing!

Emma and Courtney came second with an impressive $300,000 over reserve to split between themselves. Dyls and Dylz gained $151,000 over reserve, and also walked away with a brand new Honda HR-V Sport for being voted The People's Choice. Although last, Niki and Tiff still won $150,000 from the sale of their house, so a hugely successful way to finish this season. Catch up on all The Block news and many more photos on the TV3 website, where they're already looking for 2017 Block applicants - will it be you?

The Block Outdoor Areas | Girls vs Boys

Last night saw the final room reveal on The Block Girls vs Boys - can you believe it's finished already?! It looks like something else might get thrown at the teams in tonight's episode, as it didn't feel like Mark was quite finished with them, but essentially their houses are finished and nearly ready for auction. Niki and Tiff finished on a high and in spectacular style with a win for their outdoor area.

Niki and Tiff: 1st place - 17 points (9 from Fiona and 9 from Paul and a -1 from D+D)

The girls gamble to spend big bucks ($20 odd grand I think) on their built-in outdoor fireplace really paid off. It looks amazing!!! I want one, complete with marble tiles, although I'd quite like a pizza oven in the mix too. The white with touches of black is totally in keeping with their indoors, and a touch of blue in the cushions links back to their laundry tiles.

The rainwater tank with vertical vege garden is really cool, and kids and animals will love the pocket of grass. The only thing I didn't like was the choice and the placement of the outdoor furniture. It is so impractical and will not stand up to the elements, and impossible to mow around. I think it would've made more sense to put the table and chairs on the tiled area. It's all very well making a space look pretty, but if it's not functional it's just a waste.

But, back to the built-in fire and bench seat... it's amazing, and Niki and Tiff absolutely deserve this win.

Dyls and Dylz: 2nd place - 16.5 points (8.5 from Fiona and 8 from Paul)

Sam and Emmett had the "-1" to play, but realised after the judge's comments that it wouldn't be enough to help them this week. Rather than not play it at all, Big Dyls offered them $1,000 for it. It was a gamble that didn't quite pay off as D+D were still half a point behind. Theirs was definitely my second favourite space, I really like the indoor/outdoor flow and the Louvretec roof that can be open or closed.

It was a shame the boys couldn't use their building skills to build in their BBQ, it would've looked a lot smarter. But I know they were flat out doing other jobs, and I do love the curved wooden walkway they built. I guess there is only so much they can achieve in the time frame.

Junior did a great job around the side of the house, I love the little river stone walkway and the boxed herb garden.

Emma and Courtney: 3rd place - 13 points (6 from Fiona and 7 from Paul)

The girls have some nice elements in their space like the slatted wall and the retractable awning, but there was nothing that really 'wowed' me.

The glass balustrade doesn't allow a lot of privacy, and I wonder if repeating the wooden slatted wall and carrying it up a bit higher might've helped with this. I like the frame behind the table, it will look lovely once the plants become more established and start covering it.

Sam and Emmett: last place - 12 points (6 from Fiona and 6 from Paul)

It was another tough week for the boys with sooo much to finish off inside and out. Unfortunately I found their outdoor space a bit busy with the checkerboard pavers in two different greys and the brown furniture.

There's not much more to say other than this last photo is my favourite of theirs. I really like the materials used on the house - the large blocks of dark weatherboard and light brick, and the vertical wood cladding.

With everything finished in the houses, what will this week bring? Stay tuned to TV3 to see all the drama. With auction day looming, who is your pick to win this year? Did any of you make it to the open homes? I'd love to hear what you thought.

The Block Garage + Laundry | Girls vs Boys

The Block houses are nearly complete. The last week was spent on the garage and laundry, as well as fixing and finishing any last details throughout the house. It was another action packed week with loved ones visiting; a mysterious leak at Emma and Courtney's house; challenges that involved helping the community; and another altercation between Big Dyls and Peter Wolfkamp over the use of power tools after 6pm. All that on top of very little sleep and budget troubles, it's exhausting just watching! E+C took out their second win in a row, so their money worries are looking a little brighter.

Emma and Courtney: 1st place - 16.5 points (8 from Fiona and 8.5 from Paul)

High scores for spaces that are more about function than style, but the girls made some great choices. Their carpet is a practical grey that should hide many sins, and the teak cabinetry around the laundry warms the space and adds a bit more interest. A peg board tool wall and a pull-out work bench are handy and clever additions.

The laundry is practical and tidy with plenty of bench space and storage, and I like the subtle tiles which add a bit of texture. As much as we may not want to, we have to spend a fair bit of time in the laundry, especially if you have kids, so you want the space to be nice as well as functional.

Dyls and Dylz: 2nd place - 15 points (8 from Fiona and 7 from Paul)

With polished concrete floors and ply lined walls, the boys' garage is minimal but pretty cool. I like that mix of materials, and again it will be really practical and easy to keep clean.

Their clever addition is a set of pull-down stairs up to an attic space, which provides valuable additional storage.

The laundry set up is simple but practical. The black light switches are a nice touch.

Sam and Emmett: 3rd place - 14.5 points (7 from Fiona and 7.5 from Paul)

I really like Sam and Emmet's spaces, and I think it must've only been their finishes that let them down. They have a couple of extra rooms, which is great for re-sale but just more work for the boys to complete. They also used ply on some of their walls and I like the way they've finished it with the simple skirts and trims.

The Bosch tool wall won in a previous challenge is a massive plus for the future owners, and the bulk head with built-in speakers in very cool too. The boys had a "-1" to play but decided, after hearing the initial comments about their space, that they would hold on to it. This turned out to be a wise decision as it wouldn't have helped them win.

Sam and Emmett are the only ones with a seperate laundry, and it's a great space with fully tiled walls and large bench space for folding washing or laying out woollens to dry. The black and white links back to their kitchen.

Niki and Tiff: last place - 12.5 points (6 from Fiona and 6.5 from Paul)

It's not often we see Niki and Tiff at the bottom of the points ladder unless part of a strategic move. Their laundry space was their typical style with some beautiful tile choices. I love these along with the painted brick and panelled sliding door.

A wine fridge and a smaller fridge in the garage will come in handy, I'm sure, but I knew the jet black carpet in the garage was a mistake as soon as I saw them choose it. It looks smart for about 10 seconds and then "everything" will show up on it. I made the mistake of putting really dark carpet down once and never again - it was a nightmare. I know this is just a garage and not a living space, but because of that it's likely to get twice as dirty.

As usual the girls' styling and attention to detail is fantastic. I love the black sink and tap with the crisp white bench and dark blue tiles, along with the styling touches. Unfortunately, one of the reasons for their low scores were some untidy finishes, so there will be a lot for all of the teams to finish up this week in time for their open homes.

It's hard to believe the houses are nearly finished, it still amazes me at the rate these homes are turned around in. This week is outdoor week, and judging by the state of the mud around, it'll be an interesting one. I don't envy them! Catch up on all the news on TV3.