An beautiful riad with service that was the best I've experienced in years of travelling.
You will step out of the colourful craziness that is the medina through a little wooden door, and in to absolute cool, calm.. trickling water from the pool, and always welcoming smiles.
Owned and run by Massiliano (Italian) everyone is warm and friendly, and will go to whatever lengths necessary to ensure that you have a great stay! You will be welcomed with mint tea and bags whisked away to your room while you unwind by the pool and get shown around: Lounge (lovely fireplace for winter), pool with chairs to chillout, hammam, massage room, beautifully decorated rooms (huge attention to detail), and a great roof terrace with loungers, canvas umbrellas and large sitting area.
To give you a flavour of the service..
- They were in touch by email prior to arrival, organised our airport transfers, suggested excellent restaurants and booked for us (and which one of them escorted us to through the many alleyways that make up the medina),
- brought us breakfast (each day with different homebaked breads, cakes, omlettes, pancakes, yogurt, fruit, excellent coffee) when ever and where ever we desired, on the roof terrace, or downstairs by the pool, and made a beautiful and delicious (!!) cake especially for my friend's birthday and surprised her with it singing happy birthday arabic at breakfast,
- organised our day trip to Imlil in the Atlas Mountains (70euros for both of us - own car, driver/tour-guide) - worth it,
- arranged for massages and henna tattoos at the riad at a time that suited us,
- we got in from a day of trawling the souks exhausted and requested dinner in at very late notice - no problem - table set and an entire 3 course meal laid on! I thought the various starters were the main meal as they hadn't had time to prepare.. no no! I had to make space for two more courses. It was 23 euros I think, and 110% worth it. The food out of the kitchen is all fresh and wonderful! (and offer cooking classes),
- we exchanged mobile numbers with the staff so that if we ever got lost, they would come and find us.
The location is great.. just off a spice market in the medina, (taxis will drop you 1 min walk away), 2min from Bahia Palace, 5min walk to Bab Agnaou, 10-15min to El Fna. Highlight was El Fna by night! Amazing. And we felt safe walking home from there.
I have seen other reviews about the noisy call to prayer. This is Marrakech, there are mosques every 100 yards, you will always hear the call to prayer a few times a day, its simply all part of it.
We were sad to leave. It felt like home very quickly and we were very comfortable and taken very good care of. Certainly good value for money. I will be coming back here, and the ultimate test: Yes, I would recommend it to family and friends!
Enjoy your stay in Marrakech!
- Head to the Beldi Country Club for lunch outside, rose fields, Atlas Mountains in the distance, followed by lazy afternoon by the pool.
- Cafe de France on Djemaa El Fna - excellent views from top floor terrace - watch the sun go down over El Fna
- Haggle - ignore their starting prices (extreme chancers) - decide in your head what you would pay in your own currency, convert to Dirhams, start below, and don't go much over before walking out. They will cave in. Otherwise you will walk away feeling like you've been taken..
- While we felt very safe in Marrakech (they have plain clothed policemen so no one knows who they are), DO NOT let anyone come into your personal space and distract you with 'where you from' while trying to sell you 28 things at once - they are pickpocketing you. (this was en route to Imlil, and luckily had unzipped an empty pocket).
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- The Riad Azoualy is located in the Medina of Marrakech, in the middle of the Mellah, the ancient Jewish quarter of Marrakech, a few steps away from the Bahia Palace and a 10 minute walk from the legendary Jemaa-El-Fna square. The Riad Azoulay combines the comforts, the traditional ambiance and the charm of old riads. The building has been restored to its former splendor of the past using the traditional materials, finishes and techniques. ... more less
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