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Posted by portugalpress on February 12, 2018
Trish and Dave Guildford in Ferragudo in mid-winter
Filming at the apartment in Ferragudo

Finding an ideal property to rent in the Algarve during the winter months was the focus of the first episode in a brand-new BBC television series broadcast on Monday.

“Get Away for Winter” is the title of the series that also features the Costa Blanca, Ibiza, Lanzarote and Florida’s West Palm Beach. Ten further episodes are envisaged.

Dave and Trish Guildford, a retired couple living in Sussex in the south of England, volunteered to view four very different Algarve properties with the help of local agents.

Their mission was to see if they could find a winter getaway that suited their needs, was affordable and might even save expenditure at home.

The first episode was narrated by the BBC’¬s Gloria Hunniford, no stranger to the Algarve herself and a friend of the region’s most famous homeowner, Sir Cliff Richard.

The programme highlighted properties in the Lagos, Ferragudo and Vilamoura areas specially selected by Mandy Hughes of the Lagoa-based company Algarve Sales and Rentals.

She had been asked by an English production company, Friel Kean Filmsn, to do the background research work and selected premises in the €650 to €800-a-month range in locations less obvious than the already well-publicised Albufeira and Carvoeiro.

The filming spanned five full days early last October. On camera, Nick Austin, another agent with 14 years’ experience in the property business here, gave Dave guided tours around a fisherman’s cottage in Ferragudo, a two-bedroom modern apartment also in Ferragudo, a two-bedroom apartment in Vilamoura and a typical Portuguese townhouse in Lagos.

An unusual feature of the series is that one of the couple – in this case Dave's wife – stays at home. Although Trish was not in the Algarve in person during the filming, she was filmed daily in their Sussex home taking part in her husband's guided tours via Skype.

Dave is a 74-year-old retired independent financial adviser. Trish, 71, worked as a baby sign teacher and vibrogym exercise coach.

Of the four properties they were shown, the couple went for the Ferragudo apartment at €650 a month plus utility costs of €60 a month.

In booking it for two months from mid-December to mid-February, they would not only enjoy a long holiday but save on higher heating bills and other costs at home.

“It was quite an easy choice for us,” Dave said later. “It was really just a matter of coming to the Algarve or not - and that’s a no brainer.”

The BBC show provided their first visit to the Algarve and they soon wished they had rented for a longer period. They intend to return to Ferragudo next October for a six-month stay.

“We love the Portuguese and especially the Algarve area with its beautiful scenery and glorious beaches and walks,” said Dave.

“The feeling of friendliness from the locals is really lovely. We feel safe here and less stressed. For sure, we’ll be coming back.”

The other episodes in the series follow a similar pattern to help other would-be escapees from winter in the UK.

Originally expected to be shown next month, all five episodes were scheduled for airing on BBC1 at 3.45 pm on consecutive days this week.

The Monday Algarve programme and the others in the series should each be on iPlayer for 30 days after their original broadcast.

By Len Port

Len Port is a journalist and author based in the Algarve. Follow Len’s reflections on current affairs in Portugal on his blog:



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