Firstly I would just like to mention that this is our first EVER blog post. I thought it was about time we got in on it, especially as we always have something going on at the lodge.
Luis and I set ourselves quite the challenge when we moved into the lodge. The new website had gone live and we got our first booking pretty quickly, great news of course except that it was for the second week of March and the lodge was miles away from being ready for guests!
We were in the U.K. when the booking came through as we went there to bring some things over to Portugal in preparation of our new adventure. The main thing being 25 gallons of white paint (luckily for us Luis’ Dad owns a decorating business in Manchester so we got it from the best) which we loaded into our ford focus zetec and set off from our starting point, my parent’s house in Devon.
We didn’t have a satnav or maps of where we would be travelling (who buys maps anymore?) so we entered the route into Google maps and printed out a list of the directions. My trusty co-pilot Luis was equipped with a pen and he had the extremely important role of ticking off each direction as we came to it. This system worked surprisingly well and we got to Southampton with only one missed turning and plenty of time before we had to board the ferry to travel across the North Atlantic to Bilbao.
A very long and rocky 31 hours later we arrived to a rainy Northern Spain and made our way down to Portugal and back to our beloved Praia das Maçãs where we immediately hit the hay, hay being a mattress on the floor as we didn’t have a bed yet.
The next day we donned our painting attire and got to work on painting the entire ground floor but before we could start we had to clear the area which meant getting rid of two old sofas and everything else we didn’t want to keep. Just outside the house we have something we like to call the “Praia das Maçãs Bermuda Triangle” basically anything you put by the bin will disappear within the hour.
We tested the theory with the two sofas and sure enough within half an hour a passer by stopped to ask if he could take them and then proceeded to put them onto the roof of his car. The car was actually shorter than the sofas and he didn’t have anything to tie them down with but miraculously he still managed to drive off with them in place. He promised he didn’t have to travel far and we didn’t hear a crash so we have faith he made it to wherever he was going.
Before and During photos
We worked until 11pm every night for a week as the booking was fast approaching and when it was all finished and looking respectable, within days of the first guests arriving, THEY CANCELLED *ugh*
Safe to say we were a little down heartened but on the bright side we had got so much done and got the renovation off to a flying start.
We weren’t quite finished with downstairs though, a kitchen make-over was desperately needed and the lounge felt far from being complete but alas, funds were running low. So we did our best with what we had and made the space as pretty as possible for our first guests.
This was just the ground floor, we still had 3 more bedrooms upstairs to sort out, the 15 square meter balcony, one huge roof terrace and a fourth bedroom that was missing a very key component…a ceiling that wasn’t falling in. But hey, we love a project!