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“A perfectly situated oasis of calm in the Medina!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Riad Assakina

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Riad Assakina
Derb Alaati Allah, 14 | Hay Salam, Medina, Marrakech 40 000, Morocco   |  
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Ranked #6 of 460 Hotels in Marrakech
Shrewsbury
Top Contributor
95 reviews 95 reviews
33 hotel reviews
Reviews in 42 cities Reviews in 42 cities
55 helpful votes 55 helpful votes
“A perfectly situated oasis of calm in the Medina!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 5, 2010

Michele & Grant made our stay at the Riad Assakina such a wonderful and fruitful experience!

Their attention to detail and efforts to ensure we had a pleasant stay in Marrakech were most appreciated, allied to their knowledge and advice pointing us in the right direction all combined to make our stay perfect.

We loved the 'Hammam' at Les Bains de Marrakech which Michele arranged, some of our friends have never had such an experience and it was indeed a highlight of their stay.

Restaurants recommended were all excellent as were the tours and transfers which Michele arranged!

We cannot finish without saying what an outstanding job Grant and Michele have done in creating the oasis that is RIAD ASSAKINA and we can also see why they are justly proud of the team that help them run the Riad, Naoual and her colleagues are so friendly and welcoming and just could not do enough for us...and everything was done with a smile, which makes the world of difference!

Breakfast is superb and every other meal we ate in the Riad was very tasty, and we loved coming back each day for afternoon tea and Morrocan pastries and occasionally one of Meriam's home made cakes!

The position of this Riad is perfect to explore the Medina from and we really look forward to going back in the not too distant future!

  • Stayed September 2010, traveled with friends
    • 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
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399 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
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English first
Knutsford, United Kingdom
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 5, 2010

We have just come back from four nights at the fabulous Riad Assakina. We can’t praise it highly enough, from the service we received when making the booking to the welcome we received on arrival. Over a welcome drink of mint tea and treats, Michele gave us a very informative chat with recommendations on where to eat, shop, etc together with maps. The service we received was excellent – we were even taken round to a nearby restaurant on our first evening. The breakfasts were lovely and on returning to the riad in the afternoon we would relax on the roof terrace with mint tea and pastries or cake. We stayed in the Merenid Suite which was perfect, we had flowers in the room and each day we had a plate of fresh fruit. On one night we had dinner at the riad and were treated to the most delicious selection of home cooked moroccan food - it is highly recommended and a relaxing change from eating out. We had a fascinating time in Marrakech made all the better by the tranquillity, service, accommodation and atmosphere of the Riad Assakina.

  • Stayed September 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 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
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Surrey
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 1, 2010

From the minute we stepped into the riad we knew we had chosen well. Michele's design background shows through in the gorgeous decor, the small team of staff were delightful and genuine in their desire to help and overall we just loved every minute.

We particularly appreciated Michele's orientation session when we arrived (not just pointing out things on a map but wandering round with us to make sure we knew where we were going). Her restaurant recommendations were spot on and I can't think of any criticism. Having gone on to Essaouira and the mountains the Assakina team were by far the best.

Having read the criticism about street cleanliness, mopeds etc, all I can say is that Morocco is not Surrey in the sunshine and if this is what you are looking for then perhaps Marrakech is not right for you. It is precisely because the city is crazy, noisy, dusty etc that the Assakina is such a wonderful haven to come back to each day.

Stayed September 2010, traveled as a couple
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Cheshire, Engalnd
Senior Contributor
25 reviews 25 reviews
17 hotel reviews
Reviews in 19 cities Reviews in 19 cities
24 helpful votes 24 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 29, 2010

My wife and I recently made our first trip to Marrakech and elected to stay at the Riad Assakina. We had not visited the the city before but felt we knew what to expect after a lot of time spent in the Middle East.
However, in my experience, the Middle East has nothing like this to offer. When our driver stopped at the end of our short journey from the airport we were a little alarmed as all we could see was a little alley down which we were led. We need not have been worried, when the door in the wall opened we were ushered into a veritable oasis that was the Riad Assakina.
The owners, Michelle and Grant have completely redeveloped the whole building using local tradesmen. The result is stunning. The first sight to greet us was the central courtyard with its small pool and relaxing seating. Our room, the Berber Room, was also tastefully decorated and accessed directly from the courtyard area.
The local staff spoke excellent English and the level of service was every bit as good as 4 and 5 star hotels but much more personal. Michelle herself was very welcoming and helped a lot with local knowledge of where to eat and shop.
Halfway through our stay a suite became vacant and we were offered a free upgrade which was very unexpected but gratefully received. As a result we had the opportunity to experience another of the beautiful rooms at this Riad.
I know this may sound very glowing but we have travelled a lot for both business and pleasure and we are quite fussy yet we could find nothing to criticize. Breakfast was simple but nicely served and good quality as was the complementary afternoon tea.
The location of the Riad Assakina was perfect for exploring the medina on foot being adjacent to the Bahia Palace.
We would recommend Riad Assakina to anyone who is planning to visit Marrakech. A truly lovely place.

  • Stayed September 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 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
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London
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 19, 2010

There are many riads in Marrakech, but why would you want to stay anywhere else when Riad Assakina exists? This must be one of the best places I have ever stayed for so many reasons - most of them directly related to the thought and care Michele has put into making her riad so very special. The decor is wonderful, with lots of little touches that really make your stay special - a candle in your room to take away, fresh fruit each day, welcoming flowers, afternoon tea and cake when you arrive back each day, a picnic breakfast for our early flight home... the list goes on. Michele takes the time to make you very welcome and ensures that your stay is very special - as do all of her team. If you choose to have dinner in the riad you will not be disappointed - but you will also have a list of recommended restaurants from Michele to choose from. We are pretty fussy and know what we like and what we don't - and we certainly loved Riad Assakina.

  • Stayed September 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 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
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 6, 2010

Stayed at the Riad Assakina with my partner for three nights in July 2010.

Pre-arrival: Michele seamlessly arranged for our transfer to and from Essaouira (in an air conditioned modern SUV, with seat belts and a courteous English speaking driver - none of which should be taken for granted in Morocco!). We were met at the alley leading down to the Assakina by Hachem, the night time riad "guardian."

Arrival: we were given free mint tea and treats and a Marrakech crash course of sorts. Michele gave us very detailed maps showing: different food places; alcohol serving establishments; sight-seeing attractions; a shopping guide (which detailed which vendors were best for which items, and even how to approach certain vendors); and popular street scams for which to watch out. She helpfully made dinner reservations for us when we told her what kind of food we wanted, and Grant walked us to the restaurant the first night so that we could get a feel for our way.

Services: a very lovely, fresh cooked and filling breakfast was served for us each morning in the courtyard. There's a choice of three mains, coffee/tea, fresh squeezed juice, and various pastries and spreads. Fresh fruit was left in our rooms during the day and we received free mint tea and pastries every afternoon (and even when we came back after 5pm). When we left early in the morning Hachem brought us a wake-up coffee/tea and a pre-packed breakfast to take to the airport. Additionally, the Riad serves alcohol at very reasonable prices. We didn't do the in-house dining, so I can't comment on that.

Staff: Michele was on hand to give a pre-shopping pep talk, and she and Grant also happily made restaurant rec's and reservations for us for the rest of our stay. She provided us with playing cards and an adapter on our request (the latter of which we struggled for days to find!). Apart from Michele and Grant, the rest of the staff was similarly phenomenal. Hachem especially deserves particular praise: he really does wait up until everyone returns for the night AND has gone to bed - if you want another glass of wine, he will be there to serve it to you, even past midnight. There is also always someone in the riad who speaks English (again, not to be taken for granted in Morocco).

Location: perfect - just a short walk from the main square, and on a very quite street with few motorbikes, and none of which were speeding (which can't be said for other parts of the Medina). I slept like a baby all three nights (admittedly, I can generally sleep through an earthquake. My partner, however, who is a very light sleeper, also slept very well).

Facilities: stunning is a gross understatement. Michele was an interior designer in a previous life and it shows. There's a before and after album in the lobby showing what the building looked like before Michele got her hands on it. It is absolutely amazing what she did with the place: there's no detail left unnoticed; everything is tastefully chosen and coordinated. The engravings in the walls around the riad are beautiful. The rooftop is great to lay out on with a book. Our room was furnished to a very high standard, and the beds were comfy. The tile work on the bathroom counter was also beautiful. Our room was also cleaned daily, and the common areas were spotless. There is one cat, who Michele and Grant rescued, and it definitely did not go in our room. In fact, I'd say the riad was the ONE place in Marrakech I didn't see stray cats (sadly, they're so prevalent you'll even see them in nice restaurants). There's also free wifi and a communal laptop if you don't bring a computer.

Quibbles: I am REALLY struggling here, but if I had to find one: the bathroom in our room was open air - there was a wall and a door, but the wall didn't connect with the ceiling. Didn't bother us, but I could see how it would be awkward for friends vs. a couple. I didn't realize that from the pictures, and just looking again now at their website can *barely* notice, but I don't think it would be noticeable if you hadn't seen the room. It might be good if they could note which rooms have open air bathrooms in their room descriptions.

Summary: I feel like their moniker "your residence in Marrakech" is somewhat misleading, because my home is no way near this luxurious!! Marrakech was a bit too hectic for our tastes and I don't think we'll be returning, though as my partner said "if we could just get a teleporter to bring us here on weekends I'll be back in a heartbeat." Given what a miracle worker Michele is, I would not put that out of her reach!

In the interim, however, I wholeheartedly recommend the Assakina.

  • Stayed July 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 6, 2010

We stayed at Riad Assakina in February of this year and had such a wonderful experience at this Riad that we meant to write a review of recommendation on returning home to the U.K., but got so involved in our own restaurant that, to our own shame, we didn't manage to doit.
We now are very ready for another break and our thoughts have turned to our marvelously relaxing stay in Riad Assakina, the perfect escape for a little while from our own hectic existence. The Riad is perfectly located in terms of all of the key sights, activities and sounds of Marrakech; after experiencing the hustle, the bustle, the frantic activity of the streets of Marrakech- no matter how fascinating and seducing they are- the return to the tranquility and pampering attention of the Riad Assakina is a wonderful relief. Nothing is too much trouble for the staff at Riad Assakina; a particular delight is to be served mint tea and pastries on the sunlit roof terrace in the mid afternoon. The local knowledge of Michelle, one of the pleasantly agreeable and highly attentive owners, seems unlimited and we were given whatever advice we needed in terms of customs, sights, places to eat and generally how to cope outside the Riad.
The Riad is beautifully decorated and spotlessly clean with great attention to detail. The rooms are a comforting mix of Moroccan and European decor with some magnificant individual artistic and architectural pieces.
All in all it is a great antidote to the world outside; the contrast couldn't be greater and therefore makes the whole experience of Marrakech all the more intense and enjoyable.
The real recommendation for this Riad and its surrounds is the fact that we are about to return for another dose of tranquility versus the frenetic; we are booked for a stay again at the Riad Assakina in the Autumn.

  • Stayed February 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 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
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Riad Assakina

Address: Derb Alaati Allah, 14 | Hay Salam, Medina, Marrakech 40 000, Morocco
Phone Number:
Location: Morocco > Marrakech-Tensift-El Haouz Region > Marrakech
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#10 Romantic Hotel in Marrakech
#37 Family Hotel in Marrakech
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Number of rooms: 7
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Riad Assakina is a beautiful, light and spacious riad, ideally situated in the historic Mellah: the ancient Jewish quarter of Marrakech's Medina. It directly overlooks the famous Bahia Palace; and is within an easy stroll of the city's other famous attractions. It is also well placed for enjoying some of Marrakech's finest restaurants and bars. The Riad subtly blends the best of local tradition and craftsmanship with all the refinements of a bespoke private residence. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Riad Assakina Marrakech
Riad Assakina Hotel Marrakech

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