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“Riad helen is an oasis of calm in Marrakech” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Riad Helen

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Riad Helen
138 derb Arset aouzal | Bab Doukkala, Marrakech 40000, Morocco   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #38 of 1,080 Marrakech B&B and Inns
London
Contributor
12 reviews 12 reviews
12 hotel reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
19 helpful votes 19 helpful votes
“Riad helen is an oasis of calm in Marrakech”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 7, 2013 via mobile

I absolutely loved staying here. I had a good feeling about this when i emailed to see if any rooms were available. Mario and Maxime were quick to respond, friendly and professional. When I arrived I was thrilled. The riad is gorgeous, it really is an oasis of calm. My friend and I were made to feel really welcome and it felt like a house rather than a hotel. There was a lovely atmosphere and Mario and Maxime really should take credit for that. It was lovely to come back to the riad and relax and get away from the madness, have a chat with Mario and Maxime or the other guests. Attention to detail is brilliant, with beautiful flowers, toiletries etc, there's also wifi and free drinks. Fatiha was also amazing, making a fab dinner for us and even helping us with our souvenir shopping.
These guys are doing a great job, the riad really is a home from home. This was my second visit to Marrakech and I can honestly say that staying here was one of the highlights of my trip.

  • Stayed September 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 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.
Mario-et-Maxime, Gérant at Riad Helen, responded to this review, September 11, 2013
Hi Lucy !
Thank you so much for this quick and so nice review ! It was a real pleasure for us too to receive you and your good friend Fin. We spent such good times with you two, and Katrina and Josh. We would have liked to keep you all with us ! It's very important for us that our guests feel like they are at home, so we feel glad that you felt comfortable at Riad Helen. Thank you too for having written some words about Fatiha, who was happy to accompagny (I'm not sure it's the right word) you in the Medina. We'll keep good memories of that walk. Hope you'll think of us when you use your tray ! :-)
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156 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    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 (11)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
London
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 30, 2013

We only stayed 1 night at Mario & Maxime's riad as we were travelling on elsewhere but this was one of the best places we stayed in our trip in morocco. We felt very welcome and relaxed and Mario really helped us out by helping to book a place to stay for our onward journey, even printing us a map so we didn't get lost! Definitely the best breakfast we had on our whole trip! Prepared with great care by Fatima, who is a fantastic cook. These guys are doing a fantastic job, are genuinely lovely people and it's really somewhere you can trust will be a great place to stay and refuge from the crazy streets of marrakech! The riad itself is very pretty and there are lovely details such as rose petals on the bed & nice toiletries in the bathroom. Thanks again guys!

  • Stayed August 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
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Mario-et-Maxime, Gérant at Riad Helen, responded to this review, September 2, 2013
Hello Elisabeth !
What a wonderful review, thanks a lot ! It's been a pleasure for us to receive you and Michael, even if it was for a short stay. We are happy that you loved the place as you describe it. Thank you too for the words about Fatiha's work. And about the help for your booking in Essaouira, it really was nothing ; we hope that the place you stayed was nice too. Thank you again for your message, we really appreciate ! All the best for you two.
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Norwich
Senior Contributor
28 reviews 28 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 27, 2013

A wonderful start to our Moroccan adventure! From the moment Mario and Maxime first opened the door to us to the moment we left, we were made to feel entirely welcome. Two very lovely, relaxed guys. Through their personal recommendations and experiences we were able to learn about how to best spend our time in Marrakesh and beyond.

The riad itself is beautiful - minimalism meets classy moroccan decor. And the sens de marrakesh collection of bathroom essentials smelt divine. We have been inspired to redecorate our flat in the style of riad helen.

  • Stayed August 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.
Mario-et-Maxime, Gérant at Riad Helen, responded to this review, August 30, 2013
Hi Fran !
Thank you so much for your nice review ! We feel glad that you liked your stay in Marrakech and had good times in our house ! For us it's always a pleasure to receive enthusiast
people like you two. We hope that you enjoy (enjoyed ?) your stay in Essaouira and wish you to spend good time till the end of your holidays in Morocco ! If you plan to come back to Marrakech, you now know the adress ! Say hello to Michael, and good continuation to you !
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1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 17, 2013 via mobile

Maxime and Mario made our stay just perfect!! They made us feel home and helped us as much as they could. The day we arrived, they already had prepared a wonderful breakfast for us. I couldn't imagine a better start for our wonderful days in Marrakech at Riad Helen. I really recommend this place if you're looking for a nice quiet place to stay at. I'm sure I will stay there next time I visit Marrakech!!

  • Stayed August 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 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.
Mario-et-Maxime, Gérant at Riad Helen, responded to this review, August 18, 2013
Hola Eva !
Thank you so much for your review there ! It's been a pleasure for us too to receive you ; you two are really nice people, always smiling... And we feel glad that you liked the place. Madrid is not too far from Marrakech, so if you want to come back, of course you'll be welcome ! And next time we'll try to speak little more spanish por el pobre Jorge ! Take care of you two and thank you again !
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Reading, United Kingdom
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 28, 2013

I spent 3 glorious nights at the Riad Helen, both Maxime and Mario are great hosts. we received a warm welcome from the airport and this continued throughout our stay. they organized trips and taxis and gave good advise on tours and places to eat.

the Riad is beautifully decorated and the rooms are all big, charming, clean and bright. on our return from days out, we were greeted with towel decorations and fresh flowers. We were also delighted with the variation of breakfasts and also had a wonderful meal prepared by Fatima.

i would highly recommend this Riad to anyone it is so close to the Medina and souks but yet located in the quiet alleyways of Marrakesh only a short easy 10 min walk to the madness (which i miss). the whole experience felt like staying in a 5 star hotel but home from home feel - with a 3 star price. you open your shutters out to both the delights of the outside world but also the court of the Riad. the terrace is well presented with both areas to sunbath and also to keep within the shade.

thank you guys for a delightful stay, nothing seems to much trouble for these managers, they truly know how to look after each guest.

  • Stayed June 2013, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 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.
Mario-et-Maxime, Gérant at Riad Helen, responded to this review, July 3, 2013
Hello Marilyn,
We would like to thank you for your nice message. We feel so glad that you spent such a good time at Riad Helen. We hope that you had good times too in Essaouira, for Gnaoua Festival ! It's been a pleasure to receive you and Asha these 3 days and we're happy that you enjoyed your room and the entire place :-) Finally, thank you for the words you wrote about Fatiha's cooking. It's very important for us to share moroccan culture with our guests and cook is of course one of the most important things to discover when you travel. We hope that we completed the challenge ! Take care of you and thanks again for having took time to share your experience on TripAdvisor. Best regards,
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Chicago, Illinois
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 3, 2013

Riad Helen is truly a wonderful place to stay in Marrakech and one of the highlights of our recent trip to Morocco. The rooms are all charming with views onto a beautifully appointed inner courtyard replete with a gently gurgling fountain "a la Moroccaine," plants, random statuary and the occasional visiting bird. The rooftop terrace is equally well appointed with chaise lounges for sunbathing as well as a canopied area to enjoy breakfast, lunch or dinner outdoors but not directly under the heat of the sun. In short, you have a tranquil resort experience away from the cacophony of the medina and the Jemaa el Fnaa.

While I imagine it is possible to find other such accommodations (albeit I imagine at a higher price), the people at Riad Helen are what make this place so special, so memorable and such a stand out to other places we stayed in Morocco and elsewhere on the planet. Max and Mario are exceptional hosts and wonderful people. They were genuinely sincere about wanting to make sure we were comfortable and welcome during our stay. As an example, I insisted that they not awake at 5:30AM on the day of our departure (for Fes) to prepare us breakfast. They politely declined, saying with a smile that they could not have it any other way and yet another copious breakfast was presented to us prior to our departure.

Max and Mario also have an "ace in the hole" with their chef Fatiha as described elsewhere among the TripAdvisor reviewers. We ordered a lamb tagine the night of our arrival which was one of the most memorable meals of our entire stay along with the chicken tagine with preserved lemons and olives that we ordered a few days later. We are discerning cooks and she is among the best I have encountered anywhere. Definitely have as many dinners as you can at Riad Helen and don't be surprised to find flower petals and a wonderfully arranged table to accompany your meal.

Feel free to contact me if I can provide any other information. And by the way, the location is excellent.

Room Tip: They are all great. Check out the web site for pictures of all of them. We stayed in the Jauj room...
See more room tips
  • Stayed May 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 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.
Mario-et-Maxime, Gérant at Riad Helen, responded to this review, June 5, 2013
Hello Daniel "Le Troubadour" and Kimberly. What a delightful surprise to read your nice review on TripAdvisor ! Well, not really a surprise because you told us you were very happy to stay at Riad Helen. But thank you so much for the time you took to share your experience here. We feel pleased that you spent good time at our home (sorry for my english ; I'm sure I'm making many mistakes writing these words) It's always a pleasure for us to receive and have conversations with curious and smiling people like you are. And thank you too for the nice things you wrote about our wonderful cooker Fatiha (who is more than a simple cooker). It's important for her too to share her passion with our guests and we are happy that you enjoyed her cooking. We told us all the nice things you wrote on her ; you know such an humble person she is but she thanks you a lot and send you friendships. You speak a perfect french so... merci encore pour votre gentillesse à tous les deux. Nous vous souhaitons une bonne continuation et qui sait, peut-être à une prochaine fois ! All the best,
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Paris, France
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 31, 2013

My friend and I stayed at the Riad Helen for 5 nights two weeks ago. We had such a wonderful time that we didn't want to leave the riad at the end of our stay. We have been welcomed like stars in the riad as a cab booked by Mario and Maxime, the riad's managers, took us from the airport directly to the riad and there were also roses' petal everywhere in the bedroom with a delicate oriental smell spread in the whole riad. What we clearly liked the most was the beauty of the riad in general, our lovely bedroom (the one called wahda), Mario and Maxime who were very friendly, discreet but also told us loads of tips, and last but not least, the huge and delicious breakfast (taken on the terrasse on the roof of the riad) prepared by Fathiha who also cooked wonderful dinners for us. In the end, even though the price is quite high, it was clearly worth it with regard to the great quality of the accomodation offered by the riad Helen. We had a wonderful time and are looking to come back soon! Many thanks to Mario, Maxime and Fatiha

  • Stayed May 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.
Mario-et-Maxime, Gérant at Riad Helen, responded to this review, June 4, 2013
Google Translation
Bonjour Mathieu, bonjour Simon,
Merci beaucoup à tous les deux pour vos commentaires. Nous sommes ravis que vous ayez pu vous relaxer pendant ces quelques jours à Marrakech et que le Riad vous ait plu. Quel plaisir aussi d'avoir pu partager avec vous les petits-déjeuners sur la terrasse ensoleillée ! Nous avons cru comprendre qu'il faisait enfin beau à Paris ; ceci dit, si vous avez besoin de vous en échapper quelques jours, n'hésitez pas à revenir nous voir, nous nous ferons un plaisir de vous recevoir à nouveau. Et la prochaine fois, c'est promis, nous goûterons tous ensemble au couscous royal de Fatiha ! Bises à tous les deux et à très bientôt. Prenez soin de vous :-)
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Additional Information about Riad Helen

Address: 138 derb Arset aouzal | Bab Doukkala, Marrakech 40000, Morocco
Location: Morocco > Marrakech-Tensift-El Haouz Region > Marrakech
Amenities:
Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #38 of 1,080 B&Bs / Inns in Marrakech
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Number of rooms: 5
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Between the great Bab Doukkala mosque and Dar El Bacha Palace, gateway to the antiques district, Riad Helen is only 10 minutes walk from the famous square Jemaa el Fna.Its 5 spacious and bright rooms are equipped with a double bed (possibility of an extra bed in one of them). In bathrooms covered with tadelakt (traditional Moroccan plaster) you will find towels, bathrobes and shower brand Les Sens de Marrakech.The Riad has a central patio with fountain where you can enjoy your breakfast or meals. Unless you prefer the dining room, convivial or terrace and a beautiful view over the rooftops of Dar El Bacha Palace.At Riad Helen there is no preset menu. ... more   less 
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