Aileen Survivor

“It was one of the loneliest moments of my life”: Survivor’s Aileen reflects on the Jury Villa

"Cheers to all my friends, who are not here"

Aileen Chong is officially the first member of the Australian Survivor 2024 Jury, and the strategic mastermind revealed just how isolating the Jury Villa was.

The final eleventh castaways are sent to Jury Villa straight after their elimination, where they live a life of luxury and attend each of the remaining Tribal Councils as viewers. At the finale, they’ll vote for who they think deserves to win, and the contestant with the most votes will be crowned Sole Survivor.

While going to the Jury Villa means contestants get unlimited food, soft beds and showers, during a post-elimination interview with Chattr, Aileen revealed the negative impacts of the move.

Aileen at the Jury Villa. Survivor. Ten.

“I’m not gonna lie, it was actually quite lonely,” she said. “You’re suddenly removed from being in a camp with over, like 12 people [contestants] and cameras and crew. It actually felt like it was one of the loneliest moments I felt in my life.”

Aileen said that while in the outside world, she loves taking time to herself, the isolation in the villa made her question her gameplay.

“It feels very different when you’re on an isolated island, and you have just been voted out. You’re in your thoughts, thinking about all the could have, should have, would have.”

The perks of the Jury Villa

While Aileen admitted to feeling lonely in the jury villa, she added that she couldn’t complain about the perks. Especially after coming in after 33 days in the jungle.

“Going to Jury Villa and seeing that banquet of a feast for myself with a beautiful sight to see,” she laughed. “I was wondering how I was going to be able to stuff everything in my mouth.”

“Then you go to the beautiful room where the luxurious king-sized bed and all the snacks are, that I missed from home. And all I could think about was, how much food can I stuff in my face?”

Aileen at the Jury Villa. Survivor. Ten.

Aileen will try and influence other Jury member’s votes

Staying true to her reputation on Survivor, Aileen said she will be watching the game closely and voting for who she thinks has played the best game.

She added that if she hears of fellow Jury members who intend to vote for their friends, she’ll try to make them reassess their approach.

“I wouldn’t just persuade them to vote for one person that I would, I would encourage them to keep an open mind and view things in different perspectives and analyze the game based on multiple factors, not just, “I had a close bond with them and we were friends”.

Survivor. Ten.

Australian Survivor 2024 airs Sundays – Tuesdays at 7:30pm on Channel 10 and 10Play.

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