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“Suberb Riad run by amazing owners!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Riad Abaca Badra

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Riad Abaca Badra
203 Arset Azoual, | Bab Doukkala, Marrakech 40000, Morocco   |  
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Ranked #24 of 1,080 Marrakech B&B and Inns
Hamburg, Germany
Senior Contributor
31 reviews 31 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
16 helpful votes 16 helpful votes
“Suberb Riad run by amazing owners!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 31, 2013

We booked this Riad originally for 5 nights on a friend's recommendation no problem by e-mail. The owners Dominique and Gilles, a French couple, arranged a very inexpensive pick-up for us from the airport. The Riad is located very conveniently in a quiet side alley from a very busy and happening part of the Medina, very picturesque and local indeed.

Once arrived, Gilles greeted us with Moroccan tea and cookies making us feel right at home. That night, we ate a fantastic home cooked dinner at the Riad made by a superb Moroccan cook, who exclusively works for Gilles & Dominique. The food was incredible and included starters, made course, wine, dessert, etc! The dinner was free for us because we booked a 5-night stay, otherwise it would have been for pay at a reasonable price.

The Riad only has 4 guest rooms, so the atmosphere is very intimate and relaxed. The owners both live in a room on the base floor. The rooms are great and come with shower gel, shampoo, body lotion, towels, fruit basket etc. Wifi internet is available in the entire house. A really nice rooftop deck makes for a great spot for sunbathing, reading, or enjoying a small whirlpool in the midst of the Medina.

But by far the best about this Riad are the owners themselves. Gilles made breakfast consisting of home made bread, cake, Moroccon pancakes, eggs, tea, coffee, juice and jams every morning at whatever time we would request - no matter if 4am or 12pm! Gilles and Dominique booked restaurants for us - even though we made them go through the trouble of cancelling them later on several times!! - showed us what places to see; Gilles even bought some Moroccan tea for us on our departure day because we ran out of time to do so by ourselves!

We also left the Riad to go to Essaouira by the coast. While in Essaouira, we decided to extend our seaside stay from 1 to 2 nights on very short notice, and even this was no problem for Gilles & Dominique. In fact, because they had been so incredibly nice and helpful to us the entire time, we wanted to pay for the one night we cancelled on them on short notice (during high season!), but Gilles refused to let us pay for it! When we managed to at least tipp a generous amount extra, he put the money in the jar for his staff (cleaning lady, cook, drivers, etc.).

Overall, our stay in this Riad was absolutely amazing! Unfortunately, we did not speak French well, but Gilles & Dominique compensated for it, so we could converse in basic English.

  • 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
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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281 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    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 (32)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Korean first
  • Polish first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Tallinn, Estonia
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 30, 2013

We only spent one night at Riad Abaca Badra but the experience was simply amazing.
The riad is very well located (some 10 minutes walking from the Djemaa El Fna's square) and the premises are extraordinary: spacious, clean and superb rooms, great terrace, magical athmosphere and exceptional patio.
We have been spoiled by the hosts (Gilles and Dominique) with a great breakfast, an unforgettable maroccan dinner and a constant assistance and support. The perfect oasis after several hours of walking in the busy Marrakech. Do not miss it!

Room Tip: For an extra cost, select the suite rooms and try their typical maroccan dinner
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled with family
    • 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
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
59 reviews 59 reviews
20 hotel reviews
Reviews in 29 cities Reviews in 29 cities
62 helpful votes 62 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 21, 2013

We have just returned from a 3 night stay in Marrakech at Abaca Badra.

What a friendly and welcoming riad!

Gilles, the owner, organised our transfer from the airport and welcomed us with some mint tea (moroccan whisky!!) and a smile, plus lots of recommendations and dos and don'ts. Since we had never visited Marrakech before, but had heard a range of stories from other visitors, this was helpful and made us feel more confident to go out and explore the city.

The riad's location is ideal: close enough to the square to be near the action, but accessible without going through narrow streets too late at night. Gilles or Dominique are always there to welcome you in or help you out. In fact, it feels more like staying with a family friend.

We stayed in the famed "dark ground floor room" but apart from maybe the lack of sound proofing, it was a lovely little room. To be honest, we were only in our room to sleep anyway! Note to young couples: there is no bathroom door - only a curtain!

Like everything else in the riad, breakfast was thoughtful and adapted to each individual. You could eat at any time you liked, which was a definite bonus.

The only negative was that the call to prayer was VERY loud during the night, but this is to be expected when visiting Muslim countries.

All in all, a lovely property, not too hard to find, made special by attentive and caring owners. I would recommend it to anyone, especially those looking for a tranquil haven from which to escape the hustle and bustle of the medina.

We hope to return soon.

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 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 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hampshire UK
Top Contributor
50 reviews 50 reviews
36 hotel reviews
Reviews in 36 cities Reviews in 36 cities
96 helpful votes 96 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 17, 2013

Just returned from, in effect, two stays there. (4 nights, then 3 in the mountains, then back for our last night.) Gilles and Dominique really made us feel at home. The rooms are nice- arranged around a central courtyard as is the case in nice Arab town-houses. There is a roof terrace, which is not overlooked, and plenty of space in other parts of the house to sit in, outside of one's room. It is in the old city and yet quiet, as there isn't much traffic. Everything of interest is no more than 10 minutes or so away on foot. There are lots of little shops in the immediate vicinity if you need toothpaste or anything else you have forgotten.
We had two meals there, done by one of the staff, and they were the nicest of any we ate in the Medina.
Gilles is a hero! He not only sorted us out with a hire car for our trip to Essouira, but drove us himself out of the city gate, and when we came back, collected us so we didn't have the difficulty of trying to drive through the narrow streets to the Riad. That's SERVICE!
Just remember, please, that Riads are, indeed, converted town houses so please don't go there expecting to be in a Holiday Inn or Four Seasons: they are not those sort of places. You will also hear the call to prayer, which is a bit intrusive, but in a Muslim country you will hear it everywhere.
When we return to Marrakech, we will not be looking for anywhere else to stay.

One Tip- there are Riads with a similar name, so make sure you have the spelling correct, or, like me, you might start off at the wrong Riad!

Room Tip: All are nice.
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled with family
    • 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 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Nottingham, United Kingdom
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
Reviews in 22 cities Reviews in 22 cities
27 helpful votes 27 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 8, 2013

Awesome place and very frielndly and funny staff. Relaxing atmosphere and great rooms with a fantastic breakfast. Just when the streets of Marrakesh tire you out, you have a relaxing place like this one to retreat to.

  • Stayed February 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 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cambridge, England, United Kingdom
1 review
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 2, 2013

Riad Abaca Badra is a great place to stay. It is located on a quiet street less than ten minutes walk from Jama el Fnaa, which is ideal. The riad is elegant and traditional, with spacious, comfortable rooms; it is also clean and very secure. The hosts Gilles and Dominique are welcoming and helpful, and always happy to provide Moroccan mint tea and sweets by way of refreshment. The breakfast (provided at whatever hour you want) includes cactus honey, freshly pressed orange juice and french coffee. Abaca Badra succeeds in combining the intimacy and authenticity of a proper riad with a very high and personal standard of service. If you are going to stay in Marakesh I recommend staying here.

  • Stayed February 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 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 2, 2013

We have just returned from four lovely nights at Riad Abaca Badra. The riad is quite small and so feels very personal. We were very wonderfully looked after by Gilles who was always available with advice or a recommendation for dinner. He provided a delicious breakfast every morning at any time we chose, so we were able to sleep late, and he also provided mint tea and little Morrocan gateaux (my favourite) whenever requested.

I really loved our room (a suite on the upper floor). It had an excellent hot shower, plenty of space, and was cleaned every day. On our first day the bed was sprinkled with petals, and there were fresh flowers in a vase. What a treat!

Finally, the location of the riad was excellent, within an easy walk of the main square but in a slightly quieter area.

The roof terrace is lovely and comes with sunbeds, towels and sunhats provided. The only slight disappointment for me was that the hot tub was not working, but I know that they are trying to get it fixed.

To conclude, Gilles consistently went the 'extra mile' to make sure we had a good stay, including accompanying me to the patesserie to buy gateaux at locals' prices, and so thanks to him and the comfort of the riad we really did have the most relaxing holiday.

Room Tip: The cheapest room (on the ground floor) looked a little dark - I would recommend paying the little e...
See more room tips
  • Stayed February 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.
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Additional Information about Riad Abaca Badra

Address: 203 Arset Azoual, | Bab Doukkala, Marrakech 40000, Morocco
Phone Number:
Location: Morocco > Marrakech-Tensift-El Haouz Region > Marrakech
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beverage Selection Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #24 of 1,080 B&Bs / Inns in Marrakech
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Number of rooms: 5
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