We generally eat out in local restaurants each evening – occasionally we go into Albufeira itself as well as nearby Guia . We go to good quality restaurants with reasonably varied menus. Most do a range of chicken, steak, kebabs, pork, lamb, prawns, and omelettes, with choices of salads, potatoes and chips. Fish of course is the local speciality, including sardines. Regrettably vegetarians do not appear to be that well catered for although we notice this is improving each year, it is never normally a problem for something to be prepared individually.
The restaurants are not horrendously expensive, but they are also not cheap. The total bill for the group for the evening will be shared equally. The Club of course pick up the girls’ share within the budget accommodated in the trip fee. Each photographer pays an equal share of the remainder of the bill including a tip to the restaurant! Should you wish to eat elsewhere you are free to do so, you are not tied to be with the group 24/7 although we would like everyone present on the first and last evening meals.
As an indication, the cost per person tends to be in the region of 30 to 35 euros, allowing for 2 courses or sometimes 3 courses, drinks are additional (not over the top on the Red wine though as this becomes expensive and unfair to those who don’t drink wine) with dinner.
Please note, as in the UK there is no smoking at the dinner table or indeed when we go to any restaurant, bar inside or outside or cafe at any time.
One night during the week, we are likely to have a barbecue at one of the villas and by the pool. Everybody is expected to help out with the preparation and most importantly apart from equally sharing the bill cleaning and washing up afterwards with no excuses! It makes a change from going out; is less formal; and makes for a somewhat cheaper evening to offset one of the more expensive nights out. If you are not prepared to help prepare and or clean and wash up then maybe this evening isn't for you?
There is a very simple welcome pack when we arrive but it isn’t great and wont last more than 5 minutes. Each villa is responsible for its own provisions. The guys and girls have joint responsibility for ensuring that their villa has enough food and drink and other essentials. Shops aren’t far away - come to agreement on what you need between yourselves; do your own villa lists; and both the photographers and models are expected to do their share of the shopping during the week. Don’t overdo the shopping, but don’t starve – always make sure you have the core things in.
The core things will vary villa to villa – but beer, fags and vodka is probably not likely to satisfy everybody. Each villa is likely to have a variety of cereals, breads, butters, jams, hams and cheeses, salads, fruit, bacon and eggs, biscuits, crisps, fruit juices, milk, coffee, tea, still and sparkling water, a bottle of wine or two and beer, beer, beer, and beer. Spirits, chocolate and ice cream tend to be a personal purchase, but can be a core purchase if everybody likes the same thing. Also you will need to get salt, pepper, vinegar, sugar, etc., and don’t forget the loo rolls – they seem to disappear quickly. You will need washing-up liquid and washing powder.