OK, the hotel - we arrived at around 11:00pm and were greeted with an odd fruit drink and asked to go into the main restaurant for some food - after a 12 hour journey, all I wanted to do was get my suitcases to the room and relax but never mind. The porter took our cases and showed us around the room - if you tip him (even if it's just an English Pound coin) he will then show you around the room and how the safe and air-con works (which are free).
The room itself - the bed was probably one of the most comfy that I have ever had abroad. Rooms clearly weren't cleaned properly between guests as I found an empty plaster wrapper, long piece of cotton and sticker in the bathroom from someone's eyeliner. Nice! Other than this, the rooms were cleaned daily, clean towels if required, funky shapes made out of your nightwear if you leave it on the bed and new bottled water left daily - I'm not sure if everyone got this service as the service provided in Morocco seems to be dependant on tips - we left a Pound coin every day for the maid). There was bottled water in the room on arrival as well which was nice. The air-con is a bit of a joke, it takes the searing heat off the room but nothing else but it was better than nothing and the noise of it actually helped my sleep as it blocked out the noises from around the hotel. The halls leading to all rooms are tiled which amplifies new arrivals etc but at least there was no noise from people above so well insulated ceilings which makes a change!
Food - OK, so breakfast is a bit odd for us English people, weird little 'sausages', no bacon but then, we were in Morocco! I always found something to eat, even if it was toast and eggs (once I'd wrestled with and figured out how to use the toaster all was well although I did have one minor fire incident) - and there is every type of egg you could possibly want! Lunch is served in the pool bar. There is usually a good choice, pizza, pasta, salad, chips, tegine, odd stuff I'm not sure what it was etc but all tasty. Evening meal is in the Orangerie, the main restaurant - good choice again but very similar to lunch - the only thing is, there is a good selection of food each day - but each day it is the same. Vegetarians will be OK - those who have other food allergies will struggle.
Grounds - immaculate! There is a small army of people out every day pruning, weeding, lopping and watering - I even saw a chap repainting various bits and pieces to keep it all looking neat and tidy! There are some lovely plants in the grounds and the most fragrant blooms as you walk around.
Amenities - there is a large pool which is spotless and cleaned every night. In the main reception (which is open 24 hours a day by very patient staff who speak so many languages) you can change your Sterling to Dirhams without problem and the rate is the same as banks so don't bother joining the huge queue at the airport when you first land - no need!! There is also a pool table in the reception area which is 50cents (change available at reception) and a small shop where they do lovely safe henna tattoos for 150 to 200 Dirhams. Yes, you can get these cheaper in the Medina but I wouldn't recommend it - have a test done at the shop, see if you have an allergic reaction and have it done safely rather than getting a black henna one done in the Medina and end up scared for life - people were getting the black ones done and had some horrible reactions to them! The main bar is horrendous - Pontins from the 90's with a sauna feel to it. Entertainment is shocking and we had to walk out after a couple of nights. Drinks are not bad although don't expect the same drink every time, even if you ask for the same thing! I'm sure they water the alcohol down though as unless you are prepared to drink enough to float a small whale, you won't get drunk!! There is an onsite seedy looking bar/club - I hear it is a strip joint but having poked my nose in and found it empty at 10:00ish I'm not sure when it opens! The Tikida Balneo is an onsite spa - I didn't see anyone using it and the prices are extremely high. There is also a covered pool but this is chargeable.
Entertainment team - several things happening during the day - water polo, water aerobics, yoga, various games etc. The team also leave you alone if you don't want to join in.
The birds - if you suffer from Ornithophobia or have any kind of bird issues - DO NOT GO TO THIS HOTEL!!! The birds are there in the hundreds and will almost eat the food from your plate if you chose to eat outside. I personally loved them but I saw it causing a couple of people problems.
The ants - the hotel grounds are over run with them - if you don't like them, get a bed near the pool - the grass area is alive with them.
Watch out for lizards, they are pretty cool but difficult to spot and the HUGE grasshoppers which are bright green and about 6 inches long.
Sunbeds are plentiful and not reserved too early, I was never there before 10:00am but never struggled to find a bed except for when the Italians arrived at the weekend (who incidentally were incredibly rude but this was not the hotel's fault although it does appear that they turn up every weekend!)
Now, the actual city of Marrakech is disgusting, smelled of urine and rotting meat and actually made me feel sick. I'm normally a good traveller but it got to me. I came home half way through the Marrakesh Discovery full day excursion as I hated the place so much!! DO NOT drive here - you will get yourself squished! 5 people on a scooter and a glass table balanced on the heads of passengers - asking for trouble!!!
Excursions offered by Thomson that I went on - Marrakesh Discovery - mentioned above - also of note is the carpet shop that you get taken into and hassled to buy a carpet! Atlas 4x4 Adventure - not bad, not stunning. In July there is still some snow on the mountains but we didn't get to stop where we could take good photos and the food at the lunch stop had beetles in it and the food hygiene was appalling.
All in all, it was a good holiday, the staff really were friendly and Sandra, the rep, was fabulous. She's at the hotel every day and can't do enough to help you. Apparently the hotel has recently been taken over by Rui so it's got some improvements to do but considering the rest of Marrkesh, this place is like an oasis!
On arrival, if you are not happy with your room, speak to reception, they are very accommodating if...
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.