Meet our staff Karine

Meet Karine, 26 year old surfer from the Netherlands.

Why did you decided to move to Portugal?
After 2 years of traveling through New Zealand, Australia and Indonesia I felt I wanted be in Europe. I already heard a lot of good things about Portugal and after seeing a little surf movie about the waves in Portugal my decision was made. I applied for different job all over Portugal and my favourite surf retreat contacted me back and a month later I took a plane to Portugal to work for Chicks on Waves. From the start on I loved the women only concept. Katrien created a real paradise for women who want to learn to surf. Immediately I fell in love with this ocean view luxurious boutique style villa. A dream came true. Living next to the ocean being able to surf everyday and being surrounded by so many inspiring women.

Tell me about your job.
I run the surf and yoga retreats for Chicks on waves and One Life Lodge. I do everything behind and before the scenes. I make sure all our retreat spots are getting filled up. I answer all the emails and manage all the finances. Taking care of our amazing team, I make the work schedules and coordinate the weekly schedules with our surf school, yoga teachers, chef and non-surf activities. Besides this I take care of the marketing for Chicks on Waves this includes maintaining the Instagram, Facebook and website. I also have a big passion for cooking and once a week I cook together with Niek and Katrien the BBQ night. A few times a week I make really tasty snacks for our guests. This is in a few words what my job is about.

Explain how a day in your life looks like.
I wake up around 8 a clock and start having the most amazing breakfast with the lovely retreat guests. I love eating healthy and tasty food. For breakfast I have avocado and eggs. During breakfast I check the surf report and organize a surf with my surf girls, I pack the car and drive to our local surf spot Castelejo. For me this is the best way to start the day. We do a little surf session of 1,5 hour and after this I go back to work. I quickly eat a yummy salad what the girls from the morning shift left for me and start my daily work tasks. Around 4 a clock I make a healthy yummy cake for when the retreat girls are back from the surf. Some evenings I stay at the villa and enjoy the delicious food from our chef. Some other nights I go out for dinner with friends.

What do you like the most about your job
I always loved hospitality and organizing. Everyday I do something different. It is never the same. My job is a great combination of working a bit on the computer and being hands on. There is always something going on in the lodge, never a dull moment. I have a passion for hospitality, cooking and surfing and in this job I could do all of them. Chicks on Waves was a small a company but grow the last two years a lot. We had to come up with new systems and how to organize everything. For me it was super fun to spar with Katrien about different challenges. She always supported my ideas and I felt we complemented each other very well.

How is it to work with only women?
I love working with women and being surrounded by women. I always had way more female friends than male friends. I feel we empower each other. No mensplaining and men who try to better than you.

How are the waves around the Algarve?
I love surfing beach breaks, I always did. This area has a lot of beach breaks. The Algarve has plenty of different surf spots all around the coast. Everyday there is a wave to surf. We have waves for all kind of abilities. From small and gentle to big and powerful.

Are you ever going back to the Netherlands?
I never say never.But for now, No. I am very used to live in very beautiful places with nice and warm weather. Living next to the ocean and being able to surf everyday makes me the happiest.

After running chicks on waves with a lot of passion for 2 seasons I made the decision to explore other places in the world. I am so grateful to found this place and the last two years were amazing. I learned a lot of new things and discovered new skills. Now it is time to explore new opportunities and new waves. At the same time it is scary to leave such a nice place and job behind but I feel excited about what is coming.