HGTV’s ‘Rock the Block’ season 4 features Atlanta’s Michel Smith Boyd

Atlanta interior designer Michel Boyd Smith (left) with Atlanta fashion designer Anthony Elle (formerly Anthony Williams) on HGTV's fourth season of "Rock the Block." HGTV

Credit: HGTV

Credit: HGTV

Atlanta interior designer Michel Boyd Smith (left) with Atlanta fashion designer Anthony Elle (formerly Anthony Williams) on HGTV's fourth season of "Rock the Block." HGTV

Atlanta-based Michel Smith Boyd, who hosts HGTV”s “Luxe for Less,” is hoping to win the fourth season of the network’s “Rock the Block,” which features multiple HGTV personalities competing to design the best home on the same block.

Boyd, teamed with fellow Atlantan and “Project Runway: All Stars” winner Anthony Elle (formerly Anthony Williams), is up against three other teams of HGTV stars from shows like “Farmhouse Fixer,” “Fix My Flip” and “Renovation Island.”

This season, set in a newly built cul de sac in picturesque Berthoud, Colorado, is hosted by former Grant Park resident and “Extreme Home Makeover” star Ty Pennington. The homes are super luxe, with 5,000 square feet and a starting value of $1.9 million.

Each week, the teams are given a portion of the house to upgrade and judges from HGTV decide who did it best. Given $250,000 each, the duo who has raised the value of the home the most after six weeks wins bragging rights and their name on the cul de sac street.

Boyd, an interior designer who has run his own company for 17 years and previously hosted Bravo show “Buying it Blind,” is a relative newcomer to HGTV and during the opening episode, said he hoped to take down the “OGs.”

“I think the other teams may underestimate us thinking that luxury means expensive,” Boyd said on the show, “and [that] we’re going to spend our money way too quickly. Luxury for us means knowing how to spend the money and how to create an experience.”

He added: “We’re fashion boys so if it’s happening on a runway today, it’ll trickle down to interiors in the next year.”

In an interview with The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Boyd said the weather was all over the map last fall when they shot the show. “Sometimes it was 20 degrees, sometimes it was 80,” he said. “That element was an extra obstacle that made the show this much more interesting.”

Boyd said yes to “Rock the Block” because “it’s such an honor. It’s one of the biggest shows on the network. I felt like HGTV would not have asked me if I wasn’t up for the challenge.”

He said he’s competitive and “we fought every day. You don’t go through those elements and make it to this point in your career and even take on a challenge and not want to win. We took a break from our businesses for a couple of months. It’s the hardest thing I’ve ever done.”

And as a man who has lived in New York and Atlanta, Colorado was a major change. “They live so differently from our clients in Atlanta,” he said.

The homes included massive windows so the owners could enjoy seeing the Rocky Mountains. “All of us were designing around the views. Not only do they want to see it, but they want spaces that have dual purposes for indoor and outdoor,” he said. One idea he used: accordion doors that recess into the side of the walls and opens into the backyard.

In comparison, he said, Southerners design for entertaining. “In New York, I had friends for years whose homes I’d never been to,” he said. “Everybody in New York meets at the bar or a restaurant. In the South, we entertain at home.”

He said he has learned over the years how to stretch a dollar, which has been the crux of his HGTV show “Luxe for Less.” “I hope viewers are learning something every time they tune in,” he said.

While HGTV hasn’t given “Luxe for Less” a second season just yet, he is bullish about it. “I’m all smiles regarding ‘Luxe for Less,’” he said. “There will be an announcement soon.”


“Rock the Block,” 9 p.m. Mondays, HGTV, available the same day on Discovery+