Just in time for the holiday season, HBO Max released a Christmas-themed reality dating show — and Douglas Elliman luxury agent Garrett Marcantel is one of the stars.

Featuring three young singles who travel to Austria for love, 12 Dates Of Christmas follows Marcantel, former National Football League cheerleader Faith Fernandez and watch company founder Chad Savage as they live in a snowy European castle and juggle local suitors in the hopes of finding love just in time for the holidays.

Marcantel, who hails from Louisiana and New York City but now sells high-end homes in Los Angeles, is repping both the LGBTQ community and real estate agents on the show. During the first episodes released on Nov. 26, he meets a number of eligible men as they go on a number of European adventures such as skiing and attending a holiday masquerade ball.

Here are some fun facts you need to know know about the show’s agent lead:

1. He is a Douglas Elliman agent

Although Marcantel’s agent bio is sparse on details, he moved to New York from Louisiana to work as a real estate agent. After relocating to Los Angeles, Marcantel joined the Ernie Carswell and Associates team at Douglas Elliman.

He sells homes in the Beverly Hills and Hollywood neighborhoods and specializes in finding homes that are at once high-end and sustainable.

2. He hopes his appearance on the show will help draw attention to various LGBTQ causes

As Marcantel reveals in the show’s reels, he has known that he was gay his whole life but did not officially come out until he was 24. He is hoping that the show will help him find the first partner he can bring home to meet his family in Louisiana while also normalizing LGBTQ relationships in popular entertainment.

“I think it’s a really exciting time that we are finally in a place where you can be anywhere in America and can watch gays go through this dating process simultaneously like straights do,” Marcantel told TV Insider. “This is something I would never have thought I would be experiencing, but it feels right, too.”

3. He’s really into sports

The Instagram account Marcantel launched to promote the show regularly features him hiking, swimming and doing other sporty activities around Los Angeles.

Although a complete reversal from the sun-filled city, the show’s leads and contestants take advantage of everything Austria in the winter has to offer — skiing, snowshoeing and other outdoor snow adventures.

4. He advocates for climate action

Marcantel uses his Instagram account to draw attention to a number of causes, from voter registration to youth engagement. Climate change, however, is a cause near to Marcantel’s heart and he regularly discusses natural climate-fueled disasters in his home state.

5. He had to keep a big secret

12 Dates Of Christmas was filmed in February and March of this year, right before the coronavirus pandemic hit the United States and Europe.

As with most reality shows, the leads had to stay quiet about the show’s filming and outcome — a process that became increasingly difficult as he went about his regular real estate work this year.

“This has been a crazy year,” Marcantel told TV Insider. “We started it thinking it was going to go one way and entered the show thinking we would go back to our normal lives. Then when we got back to the States it wasn’t. It felt like this crazy experience continued but in a different way. This is the perfect show to have right now.”

Email Veronika Bondarenko

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