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“Basic Accomodation Amidst a Dangerous Maze” 1 of 5 stars
Review of Riad Hadika Maria

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Riad Hadika Maria
3.0 of 5 Bed and Breakfast   |   40 derb Zemrane | Hart Soura - Médina, Marrakech 40000, Morocco   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #578 of 1,053 Marrakech B&B and Inns
Cardiff, United Kingdom
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
26 helpful votes 26 helpful votes
“Basic Accomodation Amidst a Dangerous Maze”
1 of 5 stars Reviewed March 13, 2012

My partner and I have just returned from a five-day trip to Morocco, the first two-nights of which were spent in the Riad Hadika Maria.

To start with the positives, the rooms are relatively clean, and the rooftop terrace is a relaxing place to have breakfast. The breakfast itself is adequate - croissant, crepe, coffee, jam and honey. When I stayed there was wi-fi access with no PIN required; not sure if this was actually there for residents' use though, so I wouldn't rely on it.

Now on to the negatives.

Firstly, there is no hot water. I showered in ice cold water and my partner didn't wash at all. She is quite fragrant, fortunately.

Secondly, none of the doors have locks on the outside. There is a sliding bolt on the inside so you can lock the door whilst you sleep, but you cannot lock the door when you leave for the day unless you have had the foresight to take your own padlock. I did ask the owner if I could borrow a padlock but it never materialised. Consequently we had to take all our valuables with us when wandering around the medina, which only added to our anxiety.

Thirdly, the pool is too small to swim in - not really a massive negative, but I thought I'd mention it in case a keen swimmer chose this place on the basis of the pool.

Finally, and this is a much bigger negative than it may sound (were it not for this factor I would have given it a "3") this place is almost impossible to find. It is located in the middle of 6,000 virtually identical, featureless alleyways with hardly any signposts or landmarks. It is, quite literally, a maze. It took us 2-3 hours of desperate wandering to find our way home each time. The alleys are teeming with quite threatening young men who will pester you and follow you relentlessly in an effort to profit from your misfortune. At first, we naively accepted help from a man who seemed genuinely eager to help us find our way. It ended up quite ugly though when he started demanding (quite a lot of) money and rejecting what I tried to give him (which was all I had at that point). You have to very quickly develop a stern, no-nonsense demeanour and bark "NO THANKS", or "LA CHOUKRAN" several times a minute in order to fend off the constant assaults from moneygrabbing locals.


The owners will provide you with a basic hand-drawn map to help you find your way home, but it is pretty useless. I am quite well-travelled and usually unfazed by being pestered, but the intensity and aggression of the harassment in this area was something else. Me and my partner were left quite exhausted by the time we did manage to get home each time. At one point she became really upset as it looked like we would either be out all night or have to enlist the help of a dodgy teenager who would most likely rip us off and/or threaten us.

It baffles me how a place can sell itself as a tourist destination and yet be this un-user-friendly. A few signposts, some decent maps, some street names, the odd policeman, anything would help make this place less of a nightmare. Yes, it might sound cool to "lose yourself in a labyrinth of patchouli-scented souks amidst a multitude of Berber arts and crafts" but really it's not like that. It's more like endless, desperate gauntlet-running between thousands of unctuous predators bent on abusing you. I am convinced I now know what hell feels like. It is unfortunate that the Riad Hadika Maria is situated right in the middle of all this, as otherwise it is a passable place to stay.

All in all, our stay in Riad Hadika Maria left us with a very bad impression of Marrakech, and we were glad to escape. Not that Agadir was much better - just easier to navigate home amidst the obnoxious salesmen.

Room Tip: We stayed in the Sherazade, which has a bath with a shower head that you can use if you squat and ho...
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  • Stayed March 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 1 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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109 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Location
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (8)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed March 3, 2012

I feel bad for giving a bad review but when it comes down to value and safety, there are many other riads to go for. Here's my take when I went Feb 2012.

Pros:
Abdullah the guy working there is really nice. Doesn't speak a lick of English, so brush up on your French or charades skills

Cons:
So hard to find and I mean really hard to find. Problem with that is, if you arrive at night the taxi will drop you off about 3-5 minutes walk away. This part of the medina is difficult to navigate through even in day time and even more difficult if this is your first time to Marrakech. after getting lost and often down dark and scary alleys, I had no choice but to get help from one of the locals which was a huge mistake because they act all friendly to you (generally Moroccans are very nice) and when I tried to negotiate the cost up front they told me no problem, it's okay. Of course, after I was brought to the riad these kids (both around late teens) asked for 200d each (aka ~40 euros). You can imagine the shock. after some discussions they threaten to slash my face and made other threats if I didn't pay 400d. In the end we settled on 150d total (aka 12 euros) but that just left a bad taste in my mouth for my first experience of marrakech. if you think about it, that 12 euros could have upgraded me to a much nicer riad and I wouldn't have had to endure the threats and lost an hour of my time. so lesson learned there is sometimes trying to save some money isn't worth it especially if your life is threatened.

other cons: no toiletries, no wi-fi, no service.

the only reason why i'm not giving it a 1 star is because of Abdullah. after my run in with the punks, Abdullah did walk with me through the medina to get food and water. And the next day he guided me to Jemma El Fna at 7:30am to meet my Sahara tour which was really nice of him.

But like I said, it wasn't worth risking my life to save a few euros. And I felt as a staff he could have protected the interest of his guests. He was just standing there quietly the whole time while I negotiated my way out of a jam.

In case you don't believe me and you still decide to check in to this riad, just know if a kid name Moustafa comes up to you, you better walk the other way.

  • Stayed February 2012, traveled solo
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 1 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Turku, Finland
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
21 helpful votes 21 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed December 1, 2011

We were staying one night in this poor hotel. It's situated outside of bazaar area. You need to walk loooong way very small roads to reach the hotel. Taxi can't drive those small streets so you need to walk. We broke one wheel from our bag while walking those long bumpy streets. This hotel suits well for backpack travellers but don't go there if you have luggage on wheels.

There is no restaurants nearby. The small streets are like labyrinth with bad lightning. I would advice you to stay indoors when dark comes. We almost got robbed by drug addicts on those streets. It's not safe place at all.

Our room (suite) was quite ok, nicely decorated, but it had unbelievable cold floors and no possibility to lock the door even. Also there was around 5-10 cm holes around the door... so all heated air was escaping from the room. This hotel is situated in very tall stone houses close each others, so rooms are very cold (feels like in some cold cold cold castle).

NEVER AGAIN in this rat hole. Im glad we survived alive from there!

  • Stayed November 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 1 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 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.
Utrecht, The Netherlands
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed November 28, 2011

Actually we should have stayed here for two nights, but we left after one (short) night. We weren't welcomed by the staff. The staff was unfriendly and unwilling to answer questions. (Althoug they spoke English and French, so language couldn't be the problem.) The questions were about breakfast for example, common questions you should think.

Also there wasn't any hot water in the shower... For the price we payed this isn't acceptable.

Early in the morning (06:00) the staff started having an conversation at the roof. The hotal is an Riad, so even the smallest sounds can be heard because everything is open.

Overall an really really bad experience.

Room Tip: Don't go here to get a good room somewhere else.
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  • Stayed November 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 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.
Malmo, Sweden
Contributor
12 reviews 12 reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed September 16, 2011

Extremely difficult to find it in labyrint of medina. The phone number doesn t work, map provided on booking website completely wrong. Dodgy area. No welcome from the staff. No service from them either. Don t expect welcome mint tea. Moody staff and unfriendly. No internet connection. No car park. Poor breakfast. Don t ask for extra orange juice unless willing to start long negociations with the staff. No possibility to pay by credit card.

One positive, there is small swimming pool, quite cozy and nice marrocan style all over the riad.

Do not go there, for the same price you can get much better from another riad.

Room Tip: Avoid Zouina room or you can expect student sized bedroom with bathroom in the corridor.
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  • Stayed September 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 1 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 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.
Worcester, United Kingdom
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 16, 2011

This place is a real gem, the pool was very welcome in the heat! We unfortunately spoke very little French which made it a bit of a struggle at times as the owners didn't speak much English. It was also really really hard to find. If this is the only place you are staying then I would urge you to pay the money for an airport transfer, it's 20 Euro which in comparison to the little taxi's is expensive but well worth it as the last part of your journey is on foot! So take my advice and get the transfer! The room was very clean and really beautiful, having breakfast on the roof terrace was lovely and very cheap too. The evening meal we had was also really really tasty if a little expensive in comparison to eating in the Place Jemaa El Fna.

  • Stayed June 2011, traveled with friends
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Stirling, United Kingdom
Contributor
12 reviews 12 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 16, 2011

We stayed at this Riad for 7 days. It is a very pretty, clean guesthouse. Each bedroom is individually named and styled.

The staff made it extra special, they did speak some English, however, French was the easiest way to communicate. They were very helpful and looked after us, in particular when I got ill for 2 days.

The review stating that it is far from the centre of town is incorrect. Marrakech has 3 main ‘central’ areas, The Ville Nouvelle, Place Djemaa El (Main Market/Terrace Restaurants) and The Mellah (Jewish Area/Kasbah). The Riad is located about 7 mins from the Souqs, 12-15 mins from Place Djemaa El and 15-20 mins from the Mellah. If you want to stay in one of the large hotels next to McDonalds, Zara, and the large international shops then this Riad is about 50 mins walk away from this area. However, if you want to have a real Moroccon feel to your holiday then The Riad Hadika Maria is ideal.

The breakfasts were lovely and although we didn’t eat dinner at the hotel they can provide you with a Moroccon style meal. I would recommend booking the airport transfer for arrival as the Riad is not on a main road, once you are there though they will give you a map of the area and it is hard to get lost when following it.

Our only criticism would be that the walls were quite thin and depending on your neighbours in the next room you could hear sometimes.

All in all I would have no qualms recommending this hotel to anyone. It is a jewel in heat and bustle of Marrakech. I loved it and if we go back to Marrakech we will be staying here again.

Room Tip: just ask, they do their best
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  • Stayed June 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Riad Hadika Maria

Address: 40 derb Zemrane | Hart Soura - Médina, Marrakech 40000, Morocco
Location: Morocco > Marrakech-Tensift-El Haouz Region > Marrakech
Amenities:
Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( Wi-Fi ) Restaurant Spa Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #578 of 1,053 B&Bs / Inns in Marrakech
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:3 star — Riad Hadika Maria 3*
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The riad Hadika Maria has 8 rooms around two patios, the one with fountain, the other one with swimming pool. The charm of this riad is characterized by its decoration traditional Moroccan and its numerous trees and plants.Situated in a family and quiet street of the Medina, you will be woken by the birdsong in the morning!!! The Moroccan traditional breakfasts are served on terraces brightened up for winter periods or at the cool at the edge of the swimming pool for warmer periods.The riad has a service snack bar at any time but you can also taste earthenware cooking pots and others couscous, made by Halima our cooker who fetches fresh products to the market every morning. The meals in private can be served to the lounge in front of the fireplace. You will find on the spot a service of shuttle airport or station, a massage room, an office of excursion, board games or coloured pencils for the children and books. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Riad Hadika Maria Hotel Marrakech

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