Season 4 of Southern Charm is set to premiere in just a few weeks and with it will return the familiar faces we've all grown to love (or love-hate) over the past three years. But with the departure of cast member Whitney Sudler-Smith comes the arrival of a new (very handsome) face to replace him — Austen Kroll, a Washington D.C. native and friend of Shep Rose. While devoted viewers are familiar with the various romantic trials and tribulations of the core cast, Austen is a blank slate. So, the big question: is Austen Kroll single on Southern Charm?
While not much is known about the newcomer (he's not a high-profile figure, so his personal life is pretty much that — private), based on the promo material released for the upcoming season, it's safe to assume that he's unattached. Bravo's official synopsis for the new batch of episodes describes a love triangle that Austen and Shep will be locked in: "Shep’s protégé Austen joins the group and is eager to prove that he is anything but the new Shep. The sweet tea starts to spill after the two men become involved in a tumultuous love triangle that threatens their friendship."
Bravo's first look promo for Season 4 confirm that the "tumultuous love triangle" will be a major plot point for the two friends this season, with Shep tensely asking Austen if he's seeing Chelsea. Austen's Bravo bio also describes their friendship as being vaguely centered around their mutual interest in the women of Charleston: "[Austen and Shep] became fast friends, and even faster competition to the fair ladies of the low country."
Despite the fact that Austen wasn't much of a public figure before joining the cast of the new series, there are a few hints as to his romantic past before hopping aboard Southern Charm. He maintains a pretty low profile on social media, not posting often, but a few of his earlier posts feature a young woman who was clearly his girlfriend.
The photos of them stopped a few months back, so (between that and the Bravo teases for the season) I'm guessing that means Austen is definitely unattached.
If Austen winds up being on the losing end of the love triangle with Shep this season and you happen to be an eligible "fair lady" in the Charleston area, here's the lowdown on a few of the Southern Charm newcomer's favorite things, courtesy of Bravo: He likes travel, beer, Phish, and the Carolina Panthers. Do with that info what you will.