So when we arrived it was a little shock to the system having booked the terrace suite. Pls beware the it is one of the hottest rooms in the riad in high season. As the riad suites doors are traditional they have slight gaps in which doesn't make the air con airtight within the rooms. Plus the robes had dirt on them which didnt go down too well. We brought this to the attention of Nicholas the riad manager he looked mortified and he swiftly moved us to the red Josephine suite which was cool, large and has a massive roll top bath. Again the doors to the suite have slight gaps in and you had a padlock to secure ur door when u went out. Very strange at first but you get used to it. There is no tv, wifi worked fine with no problems.
Location- pls note the riad is in the north of the medina in a poor residential area. It takes around 15-20 mins to get to the main square which consists of thin winding streets which can be hard to navigate through (the riad give you a map with two routes). Takes about 15 mins from airport. We got lost many many times and both myself n my partner are seasoned travellers who have been to Middle East before. You will have bikes buzzing past, donkeys pulling wagons and cars driving through tiny roads/ tracks. It is crazy mad!
Staff- they r the biggest assets of the riad. Nicholas was welcoming, personable, helpful and just a really genuine guy. He would assist u with anything u needed from advice to light banter after a long day getting lost. The waiter/ server and the ladies in the hotel were friendly and attentive. Staff never ask or expect tips but we appreciated the high level of service they provided.
Food- breakfast consisted of fresh fruit, yogurt, freshly squeezed orange juice, pancakes, fresh bread and jams and fresh coffee. You could also ask for extras like omelettes etc. we had a evening meal twice in the riad which was nice and traditional. They serve wine n beer in the hotel. Moroccan wine is not bad. Try the reserve. 28 euros
Directions- *remember this point most important thing out of all the review. You will be targeted by the local teenagers, children and adults. They rely upon you getting lost to make money out of u. They blatantly lie and tell you to go in the wrong directions just so they can take u on a massive journey n demand money. We did not fall for this however I have lost count of the number of times a local has tried to send us in the complete wrong direct. We were 100 meters from the square n some local told us the square was the other way. They will tell u it's a dead end, road closed, ur going the wrong way. Ignore everything they say. Just keep walking n you will pop out somewhere thats familiar. They will approach u friendly in the street and try talking to u and say, " I don't want anything I will just walk with u". We just politely said no shukkran or said we are just exploring n ignored them. Do not listen to anyone's directions unless its shopkeepers or police.
It is an experience n was lovely to come back to the calm of the riad. I would get back to the hotel before 10pm as it can be a little un nerving walking back through residential areas late a night.
Women - as u are in a residential area u will be stared at as the majority of the women are covered up. I took a scarf or shawl for walking thought rat run to the square. In the square it's more relaxed no one is bothered what u look like. Had unpleasant experience with creepy old guy who was high on something a few roads away from the riad, who just blantently stared at my chest ( I was covered up) and followed us for 5 mins until partner shouted at him in Arabic. As the riad is not in a tourist area u need to have a map provided by the hotel with u at all times. If u get lost u can get a petit taxi for a few euros n get dropped off by bus station.
Tip - get the red double decker bus from the square. Not cheap 15 euro for 24hrs but will show u all the areas u can visit. U can hop on n off when u see somewhere to explore. Try the orange juice in the square at 4dh ridiculously cheap.
Marrakech is crazy, exciting, infuriating and an experience. Happy exploring!