Avoid Rose Garden at all costs. For a so-called 'luxury resort', it falls flat on all aspects, from service (which by even the most meager standards was not provided) to facilities (broken showerheads, blocked drains, rooms not turned over, no wifi in rooms). In staying at the Rose Garden, you will most certainly not get your money's worth, rather, you will endure gouging at all levels (bottled water, meals, so-called 'excursions' (or, rather, an all-day taxi driver)) as well as the insults of the staff.
The 'resort' staff is horribly underpaid, or this hotel goes out of its way to hire rude, mean spirited, and stupid people. The staff are incapable of addressing simple questions such as the address of the hotel, directions to the hotel, a schedule of events, schedules and prices of excursions, directions to one's cottage, how to operate the safe in the room, and so on.
Simple expectations of a hostel or B&B are not met by Rose Garden. Bottled water is extra, costing 3 Euros per bottle). Rooms are not turned over. Towels are not provided. Nothing is communicated - in any language - without much tooth-pulling and interrogation. Any sort of follow-up requires three to four calls, appearances at reception, and other reminders, in order to elicit any action.
The resort location (address or otherwise) is not listed on GPS, so unless one knows the neighbouring establishments - such as Chez Ali or Île de Fantasie - only a few taxi drivers will know where to find it. Finding it on your own is very dodgy. This was a shocker for Morocco and the level of the resort, given that I was able to a) find as well as b) receive accurate and detailed instructions for arrival at all other places I have stayed in the two trips I have made to the country. When arriving, Rose Garden could not be found by myself or any taxi drivers I found whilst in Marrakech, and I rang the hotel. The response of the desk was "hire [another] taxi to take you here" - no address, no instructions, no mention of landmarks, nothing. When asked to speak to someone who knew what they were doing, the desk rudely and abruptly rang off.
After a harrowing experience making it to the resort (three hours late and in the dark), I was surprised to see that no one was on hand to help me with luggage. After checking in, the path to the cottage was confusing and there were no boards, landmarks or sufficient light on hand to help navigate after dusk. I needed to demand thrice that staff help me find the cottage before I could make my own way.
At that point I was not in the mood to get lost in Marrakech again, and as the resort demanded a deposit prior to booking, I was not keen to leave. I really should have left at that point.
The room was not turned over, the shower equipment was broken, the drain blocked, the safe locked out, and there were no towels in the room. There were no instructions for using any of the room's 'amenities'.
I then foolishly opted for the evening event. I was shocked to learn the price of the event was €160 per person, 1.6x the price of a similar engagement at the local 5 star restaurants. Things went quickly south from there.
The bloody staff either could not or would not tell me any details of the event, including that the event started at 8pm. I only knew it was on when I could hear the Chaabi musicians from the cottage.
The event was poorly attended, indicating that only those who had been shell shocked by Marrakesh roads and taxi drivers gouging them were staying. The quality of the event was low, from the bland and tasteless food, to the third rate and non-complimentary drink (for €160?), to the poor entertainment (low grade, and poorly paid, chaabi musicians, band, belly dancers, and fire eaters who kept asking for tips with every alternate breath).
The morning after the event, the dining hall not cleaned up from the night before. It looked like a tornado had passed through, with broken glass, drink stains, and food strewn about. There was one man that morning to serve breakfast, make coffee, squeeze orange juice, etc.. For the rates they charge, they couldn't hire some more people from town to staff meals, cleanup or anything else?
Everything, from bottled water, to hand towels, incurred extra charges - and in Euros, not dirhams. I expect for people to try to gouge me at the souk, but not at a so-called luxury resort. I would have been far better off anywhere else.
The staff at the hotel was extremely rude, uninformative and inhospitable. Asking any questions - in French or Arabic - received either no response, or opaque, conflicting information. One had to pull teeth to get the basics on anything - and that was what the staff would eventually answer. However, the staff were very spry and quick to offer excuses and demand money. They were very slow to deliver anything, and had to be chased down to do so.
This place is run by management of a devious nature, and should be shut down.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Situated in the Palmeraie Desert, Our majestic four-star getaway is located 14 kilometers (8.7 miles) from the Mystical City of Marrakech. Featuring 60 Suites and Villas you will find that at Rose Garden Resort and Spa every detail reflects true Moroccan style and architecture. Experience a small city setting where you will find amazing gardens through our stunning property. Discover our various offerings of fine dining, spa, activities including tennis and outdoor tours of the mountains or of the city. Here you will find your Rose at Rose Garden Resort & Spa! ... more less
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