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“SETTING THE RECORD STRAIGHT” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Riad Aguaviva

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Riad Aguaviva
Sidi Ghanem, Derb Derraz 3, Marrakech 40000, Morocco   |  
Hotel website
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Hotel amenities
Special Price
20% off room rate
Ranked #5 of 1,031 Marrakech B&B and Inns
Cape Town
Senior Contributor
29 reviews 29 reviews
10 hotel reviews
Reviews in 18 cities Reviews in 18 cities
22 helpful votes 22 helpful votes
“SETTING THE RECORD STRAIGHT”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 15, 2014

I was about to write my rave review when I read the review titled "Overpriced and overrated". That review is, in my view, not only unfair but in many respects inaccurate. For this reason I am inclined to agree with the owners (who commented on the review) that it is unlikely that the reviewer ever stayed at the accommodation.

We (my husband and my thirteen year old daughter) were also booked in the Mappas room. Although, on our arrival, we were offered the room next door for our daughter (as it had since become available and, I might add, at no extra cost), the Mappas room is in fact more than big enough to accommodate an extra adult sized bed. In fact an extra bed could also have been fitted (admittedly at a bit of a squeeze) in the room in which my daughter stayed.
The rooms of the riad are not only beautifully and individually decorated but every detail has been thought through - from the toothpaste sachets in the bathroom to proper highpowered hairdryers to decent bedside reading lamps. The common areas are gorgeous and showcase David's masterpiece paintings which are featured in many galleries and private homes. Whilst neither the bedrooms or the common areas can be described as "big", it must be remembered that this is a private home in the ancient medina of Marrakech where space is much sought after. It can hardly be expected that such accommodation is going to be large or spacious.

The location is superb - a short walk to the square but distant enough to be out of the frenzy of the center of the medina. For the first time during our two weeks in Morocco I did not wake to the calls of the Imaan. I am a particularly light sleeper and I was no no way disturbed during our four nights at Aguaviva.

What is particularly unfair about John P's review is the fact that he does not do the service at this riad any justice. My husband and I have traveled extensively and stayed in some superb and expensive accommodation in a variety of destinations and I can say, without qualification, that the service offered by the staff and the owners is the best we have ever experienced. From the moment that we arrived our every wish was taken care of. The trip of the medina with Sara (to ensure that we knew the way back) was more like a personalised guided tour. Every morning David painstakingly put together an individualised itinerary (and hand drawn map) taking into account our likes and dislikes. Thanks to the staff's recommendations we experienced Marrakech as only an insider would - we saw the interiors (which are always hidden from the outside) of many private riads, souks, restaurants and galleries which we would never have visited with a guide. In fact whereas we had arranged a guide in each place we had visited in Morocco, we felt no need to do so in Marrakech.

So - to sum up - if space is important I suggest that you do not stay in the medina in Marrakech but rather find an expensive hotel outside in the new area. But if its well located accommodation, a "beautifully appointed room", good value and unrivaled service that you are after then do not hesitate to stay at Riad Aguaviva.

Room Tip: Pay a little extra for the bigger rooms
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  • Stayed January 2014, traveled with family
    • 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.
Riad A, Propietario at Riad Aguaviva, responded to this review, January 16, 2014
All Aguaviva team thanks you for supporting our work.
Our guests know that Riad Aguaviva is more than a riad to stay.

Thank you Louise, Angie and Russell
We hope to welcome you soon!!
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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534 people have reviewed this hotel

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (34)
Date | Rating
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English first
Boston, Massachusetts, United States
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 3, 2014

I was curious, at first, what it took to be the #3 Riad (at the time of our visit) out of more than 1400 in the City of Marrakech. Truthfully, the ranking only scratched at the surface of how perfect our stay became.

We arrived in Marrakech and chose the transfer option directly to the Riad - our flight was about an hour late, but the driver waited patiently and greeted warmly - and had a nice trip right to the front of the Riad. After some ducking and winding, we found ourselves in one of the most beautiful properties we've ever stayed - truly an oasis in the midst of (what we learned) the Marrakech madness.

After checking into the Smara room (which is as beautiful, if not more so, than the pictures on the website describe), we were led on a thorough tour through the Medina with David, one of the Riad's owners. His tour was a game changer for our stay - as we winded in and out, noting points of interest to come back to later (no pressure to buy anything or even linger if not interested), David pointed out our location along hand drawn (literally drawn that AM for us) and tourist maps - so we could always find our way back and get the most out of our stay. We saw so much more than we had ever planned - even after hours and hours of research before we arrived. Such a great value.

Our interaction with this amazing Riad didn't end with checking out, though. After sharing our plans for the rest of our Moroccan adventure, the owners helped tailor the rest of our trip to get the most out of it too - helping us rent a great little car at a good price, pick out some restaurants at our next destination, see some sights along the way, and even a different Riad on our last night after returning to Marrakech (as they had no availability - it's a popular place!). It was more than we could have ever expected: to have a "home away from home" while travelling abroad. Just wow.

Some nitty gritty: breakfast is delicious, a good portion, and served on the tranquil rooftop terrace. The rooms are gorgeous - amazing clean, comfortable, and roomy enough to be very happy. The place is quiet, a welcome change from the medina. Jemaa El Fna is a 15 minute walk (at most) from the Riad, and we preferred it that way - the walk is awesome, filled with culture, nice people, and delicious food. It's also easy to get a taxi right down the street.

Listen to the owners. They have amazing recommendations, and will make your trip so much better.

Literally, can't wait to go back.

  • Stayed December 2013, 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.
Wassenaar, The Netherlands
Top Contributor
67 reviews 67 reviews
14 hotel reviews
Reviews in 26 cities Reviews in 26 cities
30 helpful votes 30 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 2, 2014

My husband, myself and our 2 teen boys stayed for 4 nights. Both rooms were very clean, spacious and comfortable. The owners and staff were so welcoming and kind. We were quite unsure of ourselves and they really made everything as easy as possible (arranged transportation to and from airport, showed us around, made dinner reservations, showed us where to get taxi etc). The breakfast was delicious and different every day. One night they made dinner for us-absolutely delicious-it was one of our favorite meals.

The place is filled with kindness and creative energy. Highly recommend!

  • Stayed December 2013, traveled with family
    • 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.
Middlesex
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 1, 2014

My husband and I spent 7 lovely nights here. The owners and staff all did all they could to make our stay a very memorable experience. We were treated like part of the family rather than just more tourists. The room was very pleasant; we stayed in the Baraka room which had the advantage of having a very big bath - with room for two. Breakfasts were a highlight with something different every day. We also loved the recommendations for sightseeing and restaurants and these certainly helped to make our stay an enjoyable experience. We would not have found some of the restaurants recommended or the more local Marrakesh without their help.

  • Stayed December 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 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.
Barcelona, Spain
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 30, 2013

It was a beautiful experience for my mum and myself to stay 3 night in this Riad. The place have a beautiful decoration and each room is different with a theme. We especially apreciate the map room and the sultan room. The ambient was very quiet and we slept perfectly. The beds are very confortable too. The breakfast on the riad terassa was the best moment of the day, enjoying the sun and the food. David an Manel, the owners helpt us in our touristic visits, explaining their vision of Marrakesh and how to discover the best and original places of this city. For sure, we will repeat again in a future trip

Room Tip: Map room and Sultan room
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  • Stayed December 2013, traveled with family
    • 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
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Los Angeles, California
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed December 27, 2013

I am just stunned at the reviews for this Riad. While the owners and nice and helpful in showing you around, the rooms are very small and overpriced. We had prepaid for 2 nights at 125 Euros per night (low season) for the Mapas room. When we got their and saw how tiny the room was. Basically the Bed took up the entire room, we expressed that we were not happy with the room. They owners were nice about it and offered a refund, but we were exhausted from the long journey and decided to stay for the two nights since we were coming back at the end of our trip for 5 nights.

The Breakfast was ok, and the Riad itself is very small and the common areas are very small and you can hear every door open and close in the place.

Our second day we found another Riad just 5 minutes away (Riad Nabila) that was so much nicer and our room was literally 10 times the size for half the price. The common areas were very big and beautiful and It really made us feel like we were duped by all these reviews. Myself and my wife are self sufficient and care more about having a beautifully appointed spacious room and this hotel does not come close to living up to the reviews on this site as far the rooms and common areas. The owners are very nice and accommodating, but you can find that at most nice Riad's in Marrakech as we experienced at Riad Nabila when they walked us a half hour to the post office to help up ship souvenirs back.

Room Tip: All rooms except for the suites are very very small!!
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  • Stayed November 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Riad A, Propietario at Riad Aguaviva, responded to this review, January 3, 2014
We can assure that this person has never been in our Riad and for this reason this person doesn't know Riad Aguaviva's real added value.

The only aim of this person is to destroy our task as a competent and honest team.

We find it unfair that another Riad gets publicity at the expense of our efforts and of all our guests' real opinions about us.

Manel y David
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Glasgow
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 24, 2013

We stayed two nights in this riad in early December. We cannot praise the welcome and the staff enough. We arrived quite late but were warmly welcomed and our room (Clementine) was lovely - especially as the weather was a bit cooler than we expected. The riad is beautifully decorated. Sara gave us wise advice for places for dinner on both evenings as well as taking us on a short but interesting tour around the medina - including an unforgettable avocado milkshake which was divine! She also took us to see some of the modern secrets hidden in the medina which we would never have believed were there. This riad is in a very beautiful and quiet area just like a film set but it was a little confusing coming back late in the evening - don't use shops as the signposts as they close quite early. Breakfast on the roof terrace was perfect in the sunshine despite the chill - unfortunately we left very early the second day and missed a second one but we were presented with a nice packed lunch for the train trip to Fes. Overall a most enjoyable stay - would highly recommend it.

  • Stayed December 2013, 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 Aguaviva

Also Known As:
Riad Aguaviva Hotel
Riad Aguaviva Hotel Marrakech
Address: Sidi Ghanem, Derb Derraz 3, Marrakech 40000, Morocco
Location: Morocco > Marrakech-Tensift-El Haouz Region > Marrakech
Amenities:
Room Service Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #5 of 1,031 B&Bs / Inns in Marrakech
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Charming Riad in a traditional and quiet neighbourhood in the Medina. A place to relax after an exhausting day in Marrakech. ... more   less 

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