Love Island is back for season 9, with the second winter season set to take place in South Africa from Monday 16th January.


As well as a brand new location, contestants and some new social media rules, which will see the Love Island 2023 cast pausing their accounts while filming on the show, there's a brand new host in town.

TV presenter Maya Jama will make her Love Island debut this year, taking over from Laura Whitmore who stepped down from the show last year after three seasons.

So, who exactly is Maya Jama? And what shows has she presented before?

Read on for everything you need to know about new Love Island host Maya Jama, including what she had to say about her new role.

Who is Maya Jama?

Age: 28

Instagram: @mayajama

Twitter: @MayaJama

Maya Jama is a TV presenter, radio presenter and DJ. Originally from Bristol, Maya moved to London in 2012 to pursue a career in media first as an actress, before moving into TV presenting and modelling.

Jama made her presenting debut as a teenager, presenting the weekly music video countdown on JumpOff.TV, and later worked for Sky UK on TRACE Sports.

Since then, she's gone on to build quite an impressive CV.

She co-presented Peter Crouch: Save Our Summer alongside former footballer Peter Crouch and Alex Horne, and is the presenter of the BBC Three competition Glow Up: Britain's Next Make-Up Star, which she joined from season 3.

The 28-year-old also presented MTV's True Love or True Lies, and she hosted the first season of The Circle with Alice Levine on Channel 4, before Emma Willis took over.

What has Maya said about hosting Love Island?

Maya can't wait to get stuck into her Love Island presenting duties, although she thinks her age might have stopped her from landing the job sooner.

Speaking in an interview ahead of season 9, she said: "Once you start doing TV, you meet a lot of producers through different shows, and the heads will be aware of talent. That’s weird to call yourself talent, isn’t it? I talk for a living. It’s not exactly tap dancing everywhere or performing a ballad."

She continued: “So I think I’ve always been in their eye line, but I was super young when the presenter shifts were happening in the past. They knew about me but I was always a bit too young, and obviously, there were previous hosts anyway."

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Following former Love Island host Laura Whitmore's departure, Maya was a favourite to replace her - so of course it was a "no-brainer" for the presenter.

"It was a no-brainer because I’m a massive fan of the show and I was like, ‘Yeah, OK… when does it start?’

"It’s all a bit of a blur to be honest. But I found out and said, ‘Yes, absolutely!’ and now we’re off to South Africa."

On how she's preparing for the season, Maya added: “I have always been a big fan but I tried not to do too much research because you want to still be yourself don’t you? And ask the questions you want to know… I’m just going to approach it how I’ve screamed at the telly for years!”

There is one thing Maya would like to see on season 9 - the return of former contestant Theo Campbell.

For the first time ever, season 8 saw a contestant from a previous season brought back as season 4 star Adam Collard made his return to the villa.

Now, Maya wants Campbell, who appeared in season 3, to have another go.

Asked who she'd like to return, she said: "Theo! I found him hilarious. That line about ‘leave with them’ - it was that. We were all feeling it and Theo actually said it. You need that honesty sometimes!"

Winter Love Island starts on ITV2 and ITVX on Monday 16th January 2023 at 9pm. Previous seasons of Love Island are available on BritBox – you can sign up for a 7-day free trial.

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