The new “First Dates Hotel” format will start on Monday (April 20, 8:15 p.m.) as an offshoot of the VOX dating show “First Dates – One Table for Two”. Host Roland Trettl (48) and his well-known “First Dates” team welcome singles to a French boutique hotel for a blind date in a holiday mood. After dinner they can decide whether they want to get to know each other better at the hotel. In an interview with the news agency spot on news, Roland Trettl explains why he likes to play Cupid and which story of getting to know him from “First Dates” most affected him. He also talks about his current cooking videos on Instagram and has advice for couples in the Corona period.
With “First Dates” you are already part of a successful dating format. What can the audience expect at the spin-off “First Dates Hotel”?
Roland Trettl: You can expect an enchanting journey to Provence and many singles who are really looking for love and will hopefully fall in love – in a setting that is the best is suitable for this. For us it is the next step, “First Dates” is a successful format in which a date takes place in a restaurant for two hours. In a hotel you can get to know each other better and possibly before the date. After a meal, you have time at the pool or – maybe for the very fast – in the room to get to know each other better.
What is special about getting to know each other in the holiday mood?
Trettl: You get on a plane south and come a place where the weather is better, the smells are different and people receive you with a smile. Of course, it is easier to fall in love under such circumstances, I've seen that before. I lived in Mallorca for five years and lived the magic of the south for a long time.
What do you enjoy most about your work as a Cupid?
Trettl: The hostess and the psychology behind the encounters. I love watching people see how different their approach is, be it reserved, shy, talkative, charming or uncharmant. The funny thing is that everyone comes to us with the same intention, namely that they no longer want to be alone. And yet everyone does it differently, which fascinates me. I'm always amazed at how strange people can sometimes act (laughs).
But there are also success stories. Which experience from “First Dates” has touched you the most so far?
Trettl: To this day it is the mother who met me on the street with tears in my eyes two years ago and was so happy that we were have found the right partner for her son. The two now want to get married even in summer. This sustainability that we create for people that we will never forget is something wonderful. I have now developed a feeling for whether it fits between two people. On a date I said to the camera after five minutes that the two were going to get married. A year and a half after their first date, they came back to us and he asked for their hand.
At the moment, many couples have to spend a lot of time in a confined space. Do you have a tip for them?
Trettl: It's a good test. They also say: If you are with someone, take a two-week vacation with them, then you know whether it is really the right person for you. The couples who are just getting crazy just because they spend a lot of time together don't go together anyway. Basically, I currently advise everyone not to stick their heads in the sand. I decided that I didn't want to talk to people who were freezing around the clock anymore. We all don't know what will come in the future. What we do know is that we'll all die someday, but that's why I can't blow tribulation now. For me that is reason enough to live as intensely as possible. You have to see it that way and be happy that you are forced to have time together. Now is the time to get creative, cook together, exchange ideas or develop joint projects.
You yourself spend your time in the kitchen and offer recipe tips in Instagram videos that your wife films. How did the idea come about?
Trettl: It all started with a Bolognese. My wife said we could share cooking on Instagram and Facebook with people and make them happy in Corona times. The whole thing went through the roof and we reached 1.5 million people on Facebook in no time. Since then, our cooking time has been half past ten, my wife is the camera operator and moderates the action. What is more authentic than a presenter with whom you share the bed every day (laughs).
What is your personal recipe highlight?
Trettl: We now have around 25 dishes together, I don't have a particular favorite. I am always surprised how well I can cook every day (laughs). Yesterday I made gyozas, Japanese dumplings, they were sensational. Today there was a different kind of tiramisu, with raspberry syrup, gin and raspberry powder. It is important to me that the dishes can be cooked well at home. Of course, shopping shouldn't be missing, but I don't use Atlantic turbot, Bouchot mussels from Italy or the Gambas from Spain. They are groceries that I get on the doorstep in a normal grocery store.
How does the corona crisis affect you personally?
Trettl: Not yet strong for me. I have no employees and no restaurant to worry about. But I watch colleagues from the catering trade and you can see how it has helped some to have been active in social networks in recent years and not to have demonized them. You now have a clear advantage. Facebook and Instagram can now be used to offer and promote delivery services.
What do you want for the coming time?
Trettl: I hope that we all learn something from it. The fact that we stick together again, not everyone points a finger at each other and everyone thinks about themselves – that starts with politics. If there is criticism from Bavaria that the Austrians are loosening some measures again, I would like everyone to take care of their own stuff. Nobody knows the perfect recipe for Corona. Therefore, everyone should look more at themselves and not denounce others. This also applies to the question of the guilty. I find it cheeky to hold people in Ischgl responsible. That doesn't get us anywhere. I hope the discussions will end soon.