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“Cheap, no frills accommodation. Great location” 3 of 5 stars
Review of Hotel Cecil Marrakech

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Hotel Cecil Marrakech
Derb Sidi Bouloukate, Marrakech 400000, Morocco   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #569 of 1,080 Marrakech B&B and Inns
London, United Kingdom
Contributor
12 reviews 12 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
25 helpful votes 25 helpful votes
“Cheap, no frills accommodation. Great location”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed April 30, 2013

I stayed here for 4 nights with my friend. We had room 33 on the 2nd floor.
It is no frills accommodation. It is a cheap, safe place to stay in a great location.
The breakfast consists of mint tea (though it is not nice- too strong), fresh orange juice (which is lovely), a coffee, lots of bread, a chocolate filled croissant and a lump of butter and marmalade. It is the same every morning- it was satisfactory.
The guy at the front desk was helpful. I don't speak French very well, but he communicated with my friend who does and was helpful in giving advice/ directions.
My stay here was distinctly average. There is no luxury or anything to shout about, but if you go on holiday to experience the new environment, culture and explore outside of your hotel, then this is a perfect place to stay. My friend and I chose it because it is cheap and in a great location from which to explore. Don't expect anything fancy!

GOOD POINTS:
The accommodation is cheap. I was surprised by how cheap it was.

The location is central and relatively easy to find unlike some of the other hotels/ riads in the medina. The hotel is located in a little alley branching off from the main square.

Watching the swallos flying overhead while eating breakfast on the roof terrace was lovely.

The wifi connection was only supposed to work on the ground floor. The guy at the front desk told us it wouldn't work well on the higher floors, however I was very lucky and had excellent connection on the 2nd floor and even on the roof terrace. My friend only had connection on the ground floor.

BAD POINTS (It is possible that most these only apply to room 33- I don't know):
The room is very dark. The lighting inside is very dim, unless you go into the bathroom.

There was no shower curtain

It looks like there used to be a rail for a towel to hang on in the bathroom, but it was gone.

You might want to hang a towel on the shower rail (where the shower curtain should be) so that people on the roof terrace cannot see into the bathroom while you are changing. The window is positioned very high in the room.

There was a bad sewage smell coming from the drain in the centre of the bathroom on most days.

The beds are hard and uncomfortable to sleep on.

You can see Djemma El Fna from the roof terrace, but it is by no means a complete view of the square.

I booked through hostelbookers.com and on their website it said this hotel provided transfer fromt he airport. I mistakenly thought this meant transfer was included in the price. I had to book my transfer separately via GoMoCo, paying 2 euros via the website and then 8 euros to the driver in Marrakech. This is not related to the hotel, but the driver gave me change of 10 dirhams instead of 2 euros, but because it was dark and hectic when he dropped us off I couldn't tell the difference! We also had to wait an hour for him because he had decided to drop off other clients (even though we had booked him) before collecting us. I called what I assume was the driver's manager several times in the airport and she ensured me he was in the airport, then 5 mins away, then 20 mins away. Essentially, she was trying to keep me in the airport while he returned from dropping off someone else. She didn't want me to leave and take another taxi!! That said, the driver was very polite and helpful. You don't get dropped off at the hotel. You will be dropped off on the other side of the square and pointed towards your hotel. However it is very easy to find (even at night).

Room Tip: We only stayed in one room on the 2nd floor, so I can't make any comparisons. It was ok, but the...
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  • Stayed April 2013, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
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English first
Rabat, Morocco
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 17, 2013

When I arrived at Hotel Cecil, the receptionist couldn't find the reservation I made online although I had a printed booking confirmation. As I had experienced this in Marrakesch before (what is up with that by the way?) and the staff of the other place had reacted in a very unfriendly way and basically kicked me out, I got a little bit nervous since it was already late and I didn't want to search for another place. But the receptionist was really nice and after shortly checking with his boss, they offered me an even bigger room with bathroom (had booked one without) for the originl price! (I know that should be standard and nothing to be grateful for but I had my share of experiences in Marrakesch, so...)

The room was pretty basic but clean and comfortable and the view from the roof top terrace over Djemaa El Fna is spectacular! Getting there is also pretty easy although you shouldn't follow google maps as I did but just go through the door right before Cafe Glacier on Djemaa El Fna. At the same time, however, this great location comes at a price as you can hear the drums and the noice on the square in your room. Some people with light sleep might be droubled by this, I didn't mind.

The breakfast was served by a very friendly man on the roof, also a great experience! The receptionist also gave me directions to the airport bus, which I find worth mentioning since I had heard that several hotels in Marrakech will tell you it is not runing to get you to book their aiport transfer. Hotel Cecil offers such a tranfer as well and so it was for me a sign of their honesty that he helped me in that respect.

If you are looking for a basic and clean place to sleep in a great location and don't mind a little noise, I can recomend Hotel Cecil to you.

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled solo
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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Omaha, NE
Contributor
18 reviews 18 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed April 17, 2013

This hotel could only be in a better location by a few meters. It is in a little alley right off the southeast edge of Djemaa El Fna square. If you walk to the end of the alley you immediately see the snake charmers, orange juice stands, and fruit and nut carts in the day or the food carts, street performers and street vendors at night. Mentally prepare yourself for people asking for change continuously, and people asking way more than things are worth... no matter what it is though, you can always talk them down to about a quarter of the price (or maybe less).

My negatives from staying with them were clogged faucets and shower heads, and the fact that it was pretty out of date. Also, despite the fact that I had reserved an air conditioned room, they told me they didn't have any left and put us in a non-air conditioned room for the first night. We did get air conditioning on the second night. The only other problem is they outright refuse to provide a telephone number, so perhaps the AC was confused in the booking process.

Despite those negatives you really can't beat it for two things... location and price. Like I said before the location can't be very much better (especially since I don't think I'd want to be right on the square). The price we paid was 585 Dirham (under $70) for two people for two nights with ensuite facilities and air conditioning on the second night (price is the same with or without AC).

Don't book this hotel expecting to live in the lap of luxury, but if you want to explore the Souks and the Djemaa El Fna square, and just need a place to shower and crash... this is a solid bet, and leaves you more money to barter with!

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
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Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed March 27, 2013 via mobile

This was our third trip to Marrakech, it's a vibrant and exciting city. The locals, although at times unscrupulous, are welcoming and there's plenty to keep you occupied. When deciding where to spend a few days in the sunshine with our 18 month old daughter it seemed the ideal choice, being only a short plane ride away.
We'd previously stayed at a hotel a little out of the city centre and decided on a more buggy friendly central hotel this time. You can't really get more central to the Medina than Hotel Cecil, it's literally a stone's throw from the hustle and bustle of the main square, Jmaa El Fna. Considering its central location, you might expect it to be noisy but those clever Moroccans know how to build. I wans unable to hear any noise from the square other than the call to prayer from the nearby mosque which was quite lovely in an eery way. Most of the noise came from fellow guests who banged their doors all evening. The hotel is also cool even in the heat of the middle of the day. It has a beautiful roof terrace with shade and comfy seating which gave us all somewhere to escape the heat of the day.
Hotel Cecil is not a luxurious getaway, if that's what you're after then be willing to pay for it. What it does have to offer is a central location, a cracking roof terrace and a perfectly adequate breakfast included in the price.
So no so good points? When we arrived we were given a room on the ground floor (at our request). It was very smelly and damp and actually set my asthma off during the night we spent in there. I've travelled a bit am not afraid to rough it but this was horrid, the drains made me feel sick. I reported my concerns to the owner of the hotel who was very helpful and offered to move us. Within an hour we were ensconced in our first floor room which was smaller but about a million times more pleasant.
The rooms at Cecil are basic. You get what you pay for after all. We had to go reception and ask for them. Our room wasn't touched by housekeeping during our 7 night stay. I wasn't worried about the sheets but the floor could have done with a sweep and the bathroom became very musty/damp/smelly. The smell of the drains was off putting, I ended up sleeping in a single bed separate from my husband to try to be further away from the bathroom drain smell.
So in conclusion, hotel Cecil is cheap and relatively cheerful. Nice staff, good breakfast.
Would we stay here again? Probably not, I'm getting too old for the hosteling vibe and I like my creature comforts. That said, if your trip to Marrakech is all about 'location, location, location' then Hotel Cecil is the one for you.

  • Stayed March 2013
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Scunthorpe, United Kingdom
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 15, 2013

excellent value for money, room basic but clean,staff very helpful, location perfect, breakfast more than adequate on the rooftop terrace,Would recommend this hotel to friends and family. Marrakech is not somewhere I would take small children, and I wouldn't go for more than 4 days unless you love shopping

  • Stayed March 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.
Swansea, United Kingdom
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 20, 2013

Not luxurious -fairly basic, but an excellent choice for a hotel that is literally seconds from the main square in Marrakesh.Ensuite hot showers,clean hotel and usual Moroccan breakfast on the rooftop terrace with views over the square which can also be used in the evenings . Ideal choice at very reasonable price. Recommend booking taxi through hotel if arriving at airport as cheaper than haggling with taxi drivers. Cost in January 2013 was 4 Euros per person if 4 people in car or 5 euros if only 2 people. Otherwise there is a bus from the airport to the main mosque which cost 30 Dirhams per person. Asked staff to book taxi back to the airport for fixed price of 70 Dirhams. Found all the staff very helpful. There is some noise (drumming)from the square but we found this added to the atmosphere of our stay. The hotel can be found opposite the number 35 juice seller on the square- look through the arch and you can see the Hotel Cecil. Would happily stay there again.

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Truro
Contributor
20 reviews 20 reviews
14 hotel reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
16 helpful votes 16 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 16, 2013

Hotel Cecil was an absolutely great hostel to stay in to really experience Marrakech and be right in the hub of all the action. Such good location, it is literally 10 seconds away from the main square, which means you are central for any sightseeing etc. I thought the hotel was a lovely place, clean and we had our own bathroom however it felt like a hostel as it was quite big (compared to the 5bedroom riad al jana we stayed later at) however it was exactly what we wanted and it ad a large terrace with views of the square and an included breakfast of coffee, orange juice and croissants early in the morning. Good service on reception and I liked the way there was continuously 2 men there.

On a 7 day trip to Marrakech we stayed here for our first two nights and online before we left we booked via hotel cecil website their desert tour with Ando Voyage which was also fantastic and we thoroughly recommend. For approx. 60 Euros we did a 2 day 1 night desert trip to Zagora, be prepared for a long windy journey high in the Atlas Mountains but it is definitely worth it to experience a sunset camel ride, sleeping in a Berber tent after drums and singing round the campfire with brilliant local guides giving you a real Moroccan experience! Included in this tour was a free pick up from the airport (even though our tour was 3 days later) you email the people with your flight info and a man was waiting at the airport for us with a name board at the airport. On the way back to hotel Cecil he did just pull in on the side of the road and another man from Ando tours got in! Was all very unexpected and we paid the remaining balance of our tour there and then in cash! We were worried we wouldn't see them again but it was all legit and we were given a receipt and were picked up 7am from Cecil 3 days later! We were dropped unknowingly 5 mins from the hotel however we had no idea at 8pm at night where we were. we were then approached by one of the many guides offering to carry our bags - as we had no idea where we were we had to accept and be took us down dark souks and windy alleys and eventually we got to the hotel where e demanded 50mad. The following day we realised we were literally seconds from hotel Cecil by using the main streets so ensure whoever drops you tells you the direction of Cecil and not tell you to use a guide! Excellent trip definitely recommend it!

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hotel Cecil Marrakech

Address: Derb Sidi Bouloukate, Marrakech 400000, Morocco
Location: Morocco > Marrakech-Tensift-El Haouz Region > Marrakech
Amenities:
Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #569 of 1,080 B&Bs / Inns in Marrakech
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Number of rooms: 18
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Djemaa El Fna Hotel Cecil. ... more   less 
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