When booking Riad Razane, we were blown away by the photos of the courtyard and the rooms. On arrival, we were just as amazed by the decor and were relieved to see that it certainly lived up to the pictures that had encouraged us to book.
We were greeted by Mustafa and his wife, who throughout our stay were delightful and always available to help. Soon thereafter, we were introduced to Ali, the multi-lingual owner who took us under his wing and became our best friend over the next two days. Ali took us to the Carrefour to get wine, he took us on an evening medina tour, he went to dinner with us, took us to the tanneries and even introduced us to a Jewish antique collector who showed us his impressive gatherings. It was a great introduction to Fes and we were infinitely grateful for the hospitality - these were all excursions that other riads would charge for. Ali knows everybody (literally) and there isn't a service in Fes that he doesn't know a guy for.
If you cannot be bothered to navigate the maze that is the largest medina in Morocco looking for food, Mustafa's wife rustles up some very good traditional food. The free breakfast consists of good strong coffee, french baguettes, crepes, apricot jam and yoghurt. The dinners are varied but all very delicious albeit a little pricey at nearly $20pp.
The roof terrace is beautiful and arguably the best place to watch the sun set over the medina. As the riad is on the outskirts of the medina, it offers unbeatable views over the entire area.
Reason for only 4 stars instead of 5?
- The directions could be improved. The map provided doesn't help too much and until you get to the front door, you don't know you're there (see Tips below for my directions)
- No Wifi. Now, I know that this is a massive first-world pain and not something I usually complain about, however, we were here on business and the internet was integral to our decision to stay here. We were fobbed off with excuses about the medina not having good wifi but we had stayed in a riad prior to this that was more central and had decent speeds so this was not an excuse. After a couple of days of complaints, Ali did save the day by bringing us a WiFi dongle to use for the duration of our stay.
- On Booking.com, it said that the room was soundproof (Sahara Suite/Junior Suite). Not only did we not want the poor people in the courtyard, sipping their mint tea to hear our private antics but we also didn't want to hear the goings-on from the bustling streets outside. After five days of awkward stares from other guests and early morning wake-ups from the call-to-prayer, I can tell you now that the soundproofing claims are very false!
Other than the few minor points mentioned above, we thoroughly enjoyed our stay at Riad Razane and would recommend it - just make sure to take Ali up on anything he offers, it's always guaranteed to be hilarious!
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