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“Es Saaid Palace... Arabic for "Palace of Inate Sadness"?” 3 of 5 stars
Review of Es Saadi Gardens & Resort - Palace

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Es Saadi Gardens & Resort - Palace
5.0 of 5 Hotel   |   Rue Ibrahim El Mazini | Hivernage, Marrakech 40000, Morocco   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #113 of 461 hotels in Marrakech
London
Top Contributor
51 reviews 51 reviews
12 hotel reviews
Reviews in 18 cities Reviews in 18 cities
103 helpful votes 103 helpful votes
“Es Saaid Palace... Arabic for "Palace of Inate Sadness"?”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed December 31, 2011

I often "switch off" when I see what appears to be a long and bad review and quickly go to the next 5 star review because I only want to read "good". You will note by my other reviews over the years I am not, an habitual moaner. If a hotel or restaurant is great, it gets said..... conversely, if it's bad, it also gets said in an effort to advise others to avoid our mistakes. This hotel was one of our pretty rare mistakes. This is the 7th time we have been to Marrakech and seven appears to have been our unlucky number on this trip. We have stayed at La Mamounia, Palmeraie Palace and a GREAT Riad, Dar Donab, all Deluxe properties. Unfortunately they were fully booked for half term and we chose “Palace” Es Saaid on the strength of TripAdvsor reviews. This time, and unusually, we were silly enough not to have actually READ the reviews but relied on how many 5 stars reviews we saw. Upon our having ACTUALLY read themafter the event, we sincerely are at a complete loss as to quite why this relatively average property (compared to the Deluxe properties we stay at worldwide) has received, more than its fair share than it ought of decent reviews. The Palace Es Saadi is a "quiet and relaxing place"....... so long as you keep the double-glazed balcony doors closed so you can't hear the CONSTANT hum of traffic from the nearby main road which you can resoundingly hear by the pool area. This is a family run hotel with NO management structure[ that you would expect from a Deluxe hotel group and we certainly saw no sign of day-today involvement. We felt there to be an innate sadness to this hotel that we have not experienced in a purported Deluxe property before. We found there to be either false or no smiles from staff) and sincerely the worst karma we have experienced. We felt that the staff acted as though they were "scared" of the owner. From the very first 'next morning" we were literally counting the days of our to return to London. The concierge[Unknown] desk we found particularly unhelpful. There is NO structure whatsoever for complaints. (again, we are sincerely not a typical complaining couple) other than to the owner directly. We paid full price through Amex Platinum (who subbed it to Classic Collection Holidays) for an Executive suite (a massive 70 sq. metres (750 sq ft) of poorly designed room of which a third of the space was corridor with very poor WIFI facility) We requested a bed (before our trip) for our 5 year old but were told that she had to sleep on the small sofa in the room..... NOT even a proper sofa bed. We told them we wanted a proper single bed as supplied by other hotels of a similar and lesser standard. They eventually did supply a bed but "....only as "a favour just for you" (verbatim). The Front Office Manager and Deputy both tried to get us to "upgrade our room" (already one of the highest category) at a "special price of a further 2000 MD " (UK£165 per night) ....we normally charge an extra 5000 per night") so we could gain extra space for our daughter. (We had booked for 8 nights costing circa UK£4950 (excluding BMI Club Class) The Front Office Manager "accused" us of having booked through Expedia (it would appear that this is the ultimate sin) and then latter apologising for her mistake. It got to the stage where, for the very first time in 30 odd years of being an Amex member, we telephoned Amex UK to try to sort out this ridiculous situation. Incidentally, the hotel on our arrival had only 36 persons staying there so one might have thought that every effort for a full paying guest might have been "de riguer". The restaurant staff (other than the Signature Restaurant) speak the very poorest of English resulting in a totally frustrating experience full of misunderstanding and wrong orders for the 10% (certainly during our internment) of English speaking clientele. The main dining room/breakfast room a poorly designed, depressing and sincerely soulless public "airport lounge". The F&B “Manager” had an unenviable job and had been in his post for nearly six months. He didn’t sound particularly confident that he was going to be there in another 6 months. The kitchen staff were continually shouting at each other. The service around the pool area was poor. One waiter, (literally) delivering food around the pool. One day our lunch was delivered "stone cold" with the waiter blaming the 25 metre walk to where we were sitting! Food OK (ish) The two pools (neither young child or "poor swimmer" friendly (1.4 metres min depth) so if you're short even an adult can't touch the floor and have their head above the water. Holes and cracks ( See image...an accident waiting to happen) around the pool. Incidentally, on 3 of our 8 days here, the hotel "ran out" of the good quality pool towels by 09:30 only to replace them with cheap and threadbare towels that they use in the "5 Star" (see more below) sister hotel. There's a large taxi rank outside the hotel (about 90 second walk down hotel driveway. When you order a taxi one might reasonably expect there to be a "flashing light" system to alert the "next in line" taxi. Not here! The doorman walks to the taxi rank and "handpicks" (I’ll let the reader guess the euphemism".....) your taxi. We understand that the churn rate (turnaround) of "senior" staff is very high. The "3 star guests" staying next door in the sister hotel (Es Saadi Hote.....advertised as 5 star but sincerely 3.5 star max when we inspected it to see if it were any better than the "Palace") used the pool facilities of the "Palace". (Call us snobs but if Iwe are paying top dollar then I don't expect the pool area to be overrun by the 2/3 star guests next door paying half the price or less). The Casino next door is owned by the same family I understand and we popped in to check it out and, in the main, there were fruit machines in a thick cigarette smoke environment and yoy come out stinking. The Main Square is a 10/12 minute taxi ride....not a 15 minute walk as suggested in literature. Finally, lest I be accused of being totally unfair in my review, the owner has a sublime collection of Moroccan 20th Century Art which can be viewed on each floor, and, at the time of our visit, was on exhibition.

  • Stayed November 2011, traveled with family
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 9
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
WonderfulMorocco, Room Division Manager at Es Saadi Gardens & Resort - Palace, responded to this review, May 27, 2012
Dear JefeyS,

First of all, accept our apologies for not replying earlier but we are not used to discuss with rude people insulting our staff or mentioning erroneous information about our resort. We appreciate that you decided to review your comments with more civilized words.

We have checked your other reviews in the past few years and it seems that you are a very keen traveler yet demanding which is a compliment in our industry. We can only improve with your comments and positive criticism.

We understand and accept that you do prefer a hotel group to a family run business. However this is structure (that we do have with a GM, AGM and all other heads of departments) gives us our strength and stability. We are very proud to be managed by the same family for over 50 years now and even prouder to see the young generation profiling to take over in a few years.

Of course it means that there are less “procedures” and “rules” (and yet, they do exist!) but it also means that we are more flexible and most of our guests feel at home with us, returning year after year sometime even twice a year! Guests are asking for Errouk, our Chief Concierge or Karima our Front Office Manager and they have built a strong relationship with most of our clients.

We are very sorry that we did not manage to give you and your family this impression and it is always a sad feeling for us when we fail to please our guests!

I would have been glad to discuss with you should you have requested to speak with me at some point during your stay. I was at the front desk several times when you stopped to take your key or discuss about the kids club for your daughter and would have been glad to assist you then. But you never mentioned any dysfonctionnement.

Regarding the restaurant and following your comments we have reorganized the service, and all changes have been given lots of satisfaction to nowadays guests. Kevin is the happy father or two twin girls since end of April and has even less the intention to leave!

Concerning the taxi stand, as in many other places in the world, we have to work with the local taxi organization which is supervised by the official Tourism Board.I do not know any hotels which have a “flashing light” to call the taxis. Most will ask you to go to the head of the stand and take the first taxi available.
We confirm that the walk is about 15mn to reach the Jemaa el Fna Square; however we cannot control the taxi taking a longer route to take you there. Again, should you have pointed this issue to my attention; I would have informed the Taxi Association immediately.

We do hope that you will come back to Marrakech and you will stop by to discuss and see our improvements as well as organize another visit of our Art Exhibition that we decided to keep longer for our guests’ pleasure.
Warm regards
Laurence Jeanvoine
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
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English first
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 24, 2011

The palace is an absolutely beautiful hotel. It is the nicest place I have ever stayed. Putting just another 5 star next to this hotel is not giving it enough credit. They did not cut one corner on this place. I just love it here they have a butler at your call and they make up your room twice a day. I honestly could go on and on. Bottom line everything is incredible. Anyone that could think of one bad thing to say about this place is crazy. It's pricey you get what you pay for.

Room Tip: Staying in the palace a must!
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  • Stayed November 2011, traveled on business
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
WonderfulMorocco, Room Division Manager at Es Saadi Gardens & Resort - Palace, responded to this review, June 3, 2012
Dear ispeakthruth,
A heartfelt thank you from all my team here at the Es Saadi Gardens & Resort. We truly appreciate you taking time to share your thoughts and comments. There is nothing more energizing than a positive feedback from one of our guests. Again, from all of us here, "Thank you" for your business and the kind review.
Warm regards, Laurence Jeanvoine
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London
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed October 30, 2011

Perhaps one of the most depressing and disorganised hotels we have stayed at. The service, at best, was three-star and at worst two-star. The staff did not speak English of an acceptable standard of even a four-star property making it very difficult to communicate. Often no towels by pool. Food at breakfast was very acceptable but more often than not shambolic and understaffed service. The training at this hotel needs desparate attention. Certainly some of the reviews I have read seem "suspect" and certainly do not reflect my experience. (For the avoidance of doubt, we stayed at the Es Saadi Palace and not the Hotel of a similar name next door) Certainly,the few English speaking families we met were unanimous in their agreement that they would not return.

  • Stayed October 2011, traveled with family
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
edinburgh
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 25, 2011

Stayed in Es Saadi Palace corner suite- room beautiful, not as large as in photos but really lovely. Staff charming, welcoming and helpful. Food good, slightly limited menu so better for a short trip. Limited children's menu but staff happily adapted dishes from normal menu. Very good stay. Took meals at original hotel, make sure you know which accommodation you are booking. Original hotel oridnary but with a retro charm. Spa treatment wonderful. All in all very good if a bit pricey.

Room Tip: Ask for a room away from road.
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  • Stayed October 2011, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Luton, United Kingdom
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed October 22, 2011

I recently stayed at the Es Saadi as a single traveller on a half board basis and although the hotel was of a good standard there were some disappointing features.. On the plus side, the staff were very friendly and the room I occupied was clean and maintained to a good standard. The hotel is set in very attractive gardens with lovely flora and because there are very few cats or dogs in Marrakech there are plenty of birds within the grounds. However on the negative side the food was mediocre. For exampleIi chose the fillet of fish one evening and the bone was blooming massive and when I pointed it out to the senior waiter he simply shrugged his shoulders. There may have been a language issue but a massive bone in a fillet of fish does not take a lot of translation!! There was a choice of restaurants,but the one night me and two other guests decided to try the alternative to the main restaurant we were the only eaters and were outnumbered by about twenty to one. when we asked why there was so few customers rthe waiter explained that in that part of the hotel guests were so exclusive they preferred to eat in their rooms out of site of the public!! needless to say we did not eat there. I would therefore heavily recommend that should you decide to stay at the Es Saadi then choose the bed and breakfast option. Ther are plenty of excellent eating places within wallking distance or a short taxi drive away.

  • Stayed May 2011, traveled solo
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sezana, Slovenia
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 4, 2011

The most beautiful place in the world witch i have ever been.
Service, food, accomodation and hospitality are on a highest level.All resort is surrounded by old trees, you can feel the nature from every part of the resort.
Safe place with beautifull pool and SPA, best personal, witch take care of every guest 24 hours.

I really recomend to visit Es Saadi palace and resort.

  • Stayed August 2011, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Los Angeles, California
Contributor
20 reviews 20 reviews
15 hotel reviews
Reviews in 15 cities Reviews in 15 cities
20 helpful votes 20 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed August 5, 2011

There are two completely different hotels on one property. Also be aware that the normal star rating system in Marrakech is not consistent with the rest of the world. This property looked like it would be a nice place to stay. I stayed in the hotel located at the back of the property. Which was disgusting. Make sure you are staying at the palace. The hotel is completely different. I will review the hotel property on the hotel site on tripadvisor. I have read other reviews whom have made the same mistake. I tried meeting with the owner, after conferring with tripadvisor after checking in, which stated the owner was easy to meet. I was told the owner was hosting guests the night I checked in. For the next 2 days I tried meeting with her to discuss my displeasure and ask to correct the hotel name problem, so other guests are not burdened with booking a 5* hotel and getting a run down 3 star hotel. Which by the way, guests of each hotel has access to the grounds of the other - odd mix to see the 5 star guests with the families and shenanigans of the 3 star guests. The owner set up an appointment, but when I showed up the manager met with me and tried to put me in a suite in the same hotel, a bigger lousy room. I wanted to meet with the owner to show her the shower nozzle that fell off in my hands. Before the meeting the owner did not make, I asked housekeeping if I could look in my previous room. Sure enough to prove my point, the hotel put the shower lever back on without fixing it. I brought it to the meeting with the Owner, which she did not attend, and the manager grabbed it out of my hands and hid it behind the desk. BE VERY CAREFUL!!!!! Very deceitful people who refuse to correct the confusion the hotel creates by naming two different quality hotels the same name on one property. Who puts customers from a 5 star hotel with a low quality 3 star anyway?

  • Stayed October 2010, traveled with friends
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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Additional Information about Es Saadi Gardens & Resort - Palace

Address: Rue Ibrahim El Mazini | Hivernage, Marrakech 40000, Morocco
Location: Morocco > Marrakech-Tensift-El Haouz Region > Marrakech
Amenities:
Business Center with Internet Access Casino and Gambling Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#1 Casino Hotel in Marrakech
#5 Business Hotel in Marrakech
#28 Family Hotel in Marrakech
#42 Luxury Hotel in Marrakech
#42 Spa Hotel in Marrakech
#108 Romantic Hotel in Marrakech
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:5 star — Es Saadi Gardens & Resort - Palace 5*
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Our Palace, member of Prefered Hotels & Resorts, is exclusively composed of suites, from 70 to 210 m², decorated in Moroccan or contemporary style. Top-level services are provided by a “golden keys” Chief Concierge.Full access to resort activities: Bars and Restaurants, Spas, Morrocan Diner-Show, Casino de Marrakech, Night Clubbing, swimming-pool of 2400m² (including 300m² heated).Located in the heart of Marrakech, in the “Hivernage” residential area, and surrounded by 20 acres of beautiful gardens. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Es Saadi Palace Marrakech

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