A tourist takes pictures at the entrance of the 'Pousada do Castelo' (The Castle's Inn) in the medieval town of Obidos, central Portugal, on February 9, 2018.
AFP / PATRICIA DE MELO MOREIRA
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With Portugal on its knees at the time and dozens of hotels on the verge of bankruptcy as the country sank into recession, finding high-skilled, affordable workers was a breeze.Now, the 47 year old, who owns four hotels in the country with her husband Roman, says she just can't find enough Portuguese workers.Already last year, Portugal's hotels got a record 20.6 million visitors, about twice the country's population.While hotel revenue and visitor numbers are at record highs, the average net salary for workers in hotels, restaurants and similar professions increased just 7.7 percent in the 2011-2017 period to 632 euros per month, according to Portugal's national statistics institute.Pestana Hotel Group, Portugal's biggest hotel operator, said in January it plans to invest 200 million euros ($248 million) in 20 new hotels through 2020, with half of that investment to be done in its home market.The number of new hotels in Portugal increased 37 percent in the 2011-17 period to 1,945 units, according to Deloitte's Portuguese Hospitality Atlas.
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