Nowadays, being on a dating show comes with some perks like Instagram followers and temporary fame. But, for me, the biggest incentive to going on a dating show is having a free vacation at a luxurious resort in a tropical location. On Too Hot to Handle, Netflix’s latest release, it appears a majority of the budget went toward housing the contestants in a villa that will make practically anyone consider signing up for reality television to live there for a little while. The Too Hot To Handle filming locations are lush.
After some research, we are almost certain that we found the exact villa where the cast lived for about a month. You could stay there too, without all the cameras and Lana, but it’s going to set you back quite a bit of money.
A Netflix rep for Too Hot To Handle confirmed to Refinery29 that the show was filmed in Punta Mita, Mexico. Unsurprisingly, (considering regular vacationers don’t pop up in any of the episodes), the spot is a private peninsula.
After doing some quick Internet browsing of all the beachfront villas in Punta Mita, Mexico, we found this very similar villa, called Casa Tau, for rent. Netflix has not confirmed the exact filming location for the new series, but this villa boasts a sizable palapa that is absolutely identical to the one where the contestants gather to find out who broke Lana’s rules. So, if you are willing to spend nearly a whopping $11.5K per night, you can walk the grounds where Harry and Francesca refused to play by the rules and cost their fellow contestants thousands of dollars almost every day.
Compared to other reality shows like Love Island, (which Too Hot to Handle seems to have borrowed a few ideas from) the entirety of the villa isn’t shown in most episodes. While Love Island constantly films aerial shots of its villa, on Too Hot to Handle, viewers only see the contestants in the grand vanity area getting ready, in the giant bedroom sleeping area, or outside, on the grounds facing the beach. There is also a special, private suite revealed in episode 4 that is assumed to be connected to the rest of the villa. Unlike Bachelor in Paradise or Love Island, where the contestants leave their living area for activities, even the dates are held at "the retreat," as Lana calls it. They all take place near the pool, the fire pit, or on the adjacent beach, excluding the finale dates.
Although viewers don’t get to see all of it, the villa from the show must be huge, much like this Casa Tau. It'd need to house all the contestants, plus the production crew and showrunner.
Whether we've cracked the mystery or not, the location of "the retreat," somewhere in Punta Mita, is practically paradise. Plenty of reality TV shows have had much worse living conditions, so it’s pretty hard to take the contestants seriously when they are complaining about the chaste living quarters. Look at where you are, people. Some of us have been on the same couch for the last 38 days, okay?