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'Did Algarve gamble help our marriage? Tune in', says Dr Eva

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Dr Eva said there were days she ‘almost lost her dream’

Dr Eva said there were days she ‘almost lost her dream’

Dr Eva said there were days she ‘almost lost her dream’

DoctoR Eva Orsmond has revealed she would love to film an Operation Transformation-style show in the sun in her new luxury weight-loss hotel in Portugal.

The medical expert has also told how she will never cut ties completely with Ireland to move to the Algarve as she had too many close connections in this country - along with her four weight-loss clinics.

Her new RTE series, Dr Eva's Great Escape, has viewers glued to the highs and lows of her big gamble on converting a tumbledown Algarve property.

Prison

She would love to have cameras filming guests getting slimmed down in what she jokingly refers to as a "prison break".

"I would love to film more hours for RTE and show the finished product," she said.

"We want to show the guests arriving to the hotel."

Dr Eva revealed she was wrestling with her own weight during the making of the show in 2018, while recuperating from two shoulder operations.

"You can see on the footage I sort of plumped up, but you know what, I wanted to also show to people I haven't had it easy either, and I have to fight this obesity," she said.

"I put on two or three kilos which is only a half a stone but you would see it on me because as a petite person, it's still a big percentage of my weight.

"I'm back to my Operation Transformation years weight, I work hard on it."

She has been overwhelmed at the reaction to the new series, which gives a much more personal look at her family life and her reconciled relationship with engineer husband, Wyatt, after a brief split.

"I have had text messages from people I haven't heard from in years. I suppose people like the fun part of it," she said.

"We were in our element and it was quite unofficial; there were just two people filming."

In the footage, she was make-up free and much more unpolished than her usual glamorous TV image.

"I did initially think, 'My God, people are going to think that all of the pictures of me are fake'," she laughs, "but obviously good hair and make-up does its magic and that's why it's good to be a woman."

She said there are benefits to her anonymity in Portugal.

"You can look horrendous on the beach and nobody would say, 'Look at how much cellulite she has on her legs'," she joked.

However, becoming a household name in Ireland has made her feel very much embraced by her adopted country.

Pleasant

"This whole celebrity thing, if you want to call it that, is actually really pleasant," she said.

"If you think when we came to Ireland, we didn't know anybody. It's almost like it makes it more homely.

"When I go on the plane on Aer Lingus, people recognise me and say 'hi'. People are very gentle about it, that's the Irish gentleness."

She has no intention of saying goodbye to Ireland for good.

"I wouldn't like to live full-time in Portugal. I think I would be bored out of my mind. We moved to Ireland in 2000 and we had small kids and you make connections through your children's friends," she added.

"I flew in to Dublin]on Saturday. I landed at quarter to three, and at quarter to seven I was already in a pub with friends.

"I like the variety, if I could spend 10 days a month here and 20 days in Portugal, that would be ideal."

Despite spiralling budgets and building snags, she has never regretted their decision to buy the crumbling property, but there were moments that were "really fearful".

"Those days were days where not only would I lose money, but lose my dream. I would then say to Wyatt, 'Will I book myself into St John of God's now or wait another week?'," she said.

However, the doctor has kept complete faith in her engineer husband and his long-time builder colleague, Mario.

"The beautiful thing is Wyatt is seriously professional and an engineer and had done all our houses and clinics here."

She added that the peacefulness of the beautiful Algarve property helped to alleviate any stress "because it is wonderful".

Wyatt is hoping for a summer opening while she thinks October is more realistic.

As for whether the Algarve adventure breathed new life into her marriage, she jokes: "You'll have to keep watching."

  • Dr Eva's Great Escape will be shown on RTE One tomorrow at 9.30pm