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“New Riad with Great Potential” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Palacio de las Especias

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Palacio de las Especias
Sidi Bouamar 35, Quartier Riad Larrousse, Medina, Marrakech, Marrakech 20000, Morocco   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #10 of 1,053 Marrakech B&B and Inns
Gibraltar
Top Contributor
56 reviews 56 reviews
28 hotel reviews
Reviews in 30 cities Reviews in 30 cities
48 helpful votes 48 helpful votes
“New Riad with Great Potential”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 29, 2013

Stayed for 5 nights in the second half of May , and booked the Bab Doukala double room on the first floor ... the one with the copper bath tub . Lovely room , well furnished and very comfortable .

This is a fairly new Riad which opened as recently as Nov 2012 or thereabouts . The refurbishment work has been done very well , and it is a beautiful small Riad with about 6 or 7 rooms. Its best to get a room on the first floor giving the view down over the centre of the Riad

The terrace on top of the building is stunning and most definately 5 star . There are sun loungers , umbrellas , shaded day beds , and a Berber tented area to relax in the shade . All very well done . A great place to relax in late afternoon after a day out in busy Marrakech .

The location is also good being just 400 metres to the North of the Souks whilst still being in the old Medina area . So you easily get everywhere in the Medina on foot .

This could become a wonderful 4 star boutique hotel one day , but first it has to find its feet and work out how to cater for international travellers . Here is a few of the problems we encountered which they could easily fix if they wanted to :
- Breakfast is mostly cereal , bread , cake and more cake . No eggs , no cheese , no cold meats , no fruit . Just carbs and "stodge" , day after day . So if you like fresh bread and fresh cake daily this will be heaven . The other option is to do room only and get your breakfast at Le Jardin for Dh 70 including omelette .
- They offer free WiFi but it doesn't work very well , and most of the time there is no signal and no internet access . Most of the cafes around town had good WiFi so why not at this Riad ?
- There isn't much space to store clothing and they provide only 2 hangers per person which is hopeless .
- It was mostly quiet and peaceful in the Riad , but you may not get a full night's sleep . One night there was a wedding next door and a raucous party all through the night . Hotel residents are not given a key to the Riad and when they come in at night they have to ring a bell . So when residents come in at 2am and ring the bell , and then ring the hotel phone to get in as the hotel staff are all asleep , then everyone is awake .
- All bills have to be paid in cash as they do not have a credit card machine which is incredibly inconvenient .

These problems , and others like them , could mostly be attended to . Idris and Yaseen are very helpful and do what they can to attend to problems . But there is no Hotel Manager on site at any time to monitor guest experiences , so it may take some time before this wonderful facility reaches its full potential .

Some eating out experiences .....Le Jardin ( for breakfast ) , Riad Donab (5 star Riad nearby for dinner ) , Al Fassia ( top class in new town for dinner ) , Cafe Arab ( drinks only ) .

Room Tip: A room on the first floor is preferable , and Bab Doukala has an antique copper bath .
See more room tips
  • Stayed May 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 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.
jose b, Gerente at Palacio de las Especias, responded to this review, May 30, 2013
Hello Gordon,

Thank you so much for your marvellous remark, all your sugestión will help us to improve our services and we will do it

You are right in which concerns breakfast, tastes are more sweet than salty, we appreciate your suggestions and we are going to design new breakfast including more salty tastes, eggs and omelettes. The fact is that in Morocco good cold meats are really difficult to get as pork is forbidden and the beef cold meats available in the market do not reach our quality standards.

We have cereal, cheese, milk, English tea and a huge glass fruit bowl full of fresh fruit all day long with fruit of the season as oranges, bananas, apples. Many clients think it is merely ornamental but it is not so, it is for our client´s enjoyment and tasting

We apologize for the WIFI issue because those days there was a breakdown I suffered myself as the connexion did not work properly. This eventuality has been solved successfully but believe me, in Morocco this type of situation lasted more than it would be desirable.

Concerning the hooks in the wardrobes it is strange because we usually have 6 or 8 hooks in each… I do not know the reason you only have two hooks in your bedroom. You could ask for more hooks to our staff, they would have supplied you. I will talk with our maintenance staff to look over this.

I regret your stay was at the same time that a wedding in the neighbourhood but this is something which has nothing to do with us. Moroccan weddings last several days, they are really spectacular but noisy too. This is the reason we do not celebrate Moroccan weddings in Palacio de las Especias as our clients rest is the main important thing for us. A wedding in the roundabouts is unusual.

I really want to thank your e-mail as your suggestions help us to improve. We are pleasant you categorize our hotel as 4 or 5 stars due to decoration, staff, the terrace. Thank you to have chosen our Riad for your holidays.

Gordon, we will be glad if you came back to our riad in case you travelled to Morocco again so you can enjoy 100x100 of the improvements made due to your remarks.

MANY THANKS
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238 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    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 (7)
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English first
Lisbon, Portugal
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 7, 2013

We travelled, May 1- to May 5, 2013, 8 decade long friends for a celebration. Having organized everything, my self, I was anxious that the Riad stand up to expectation as the web pictures can always look fashinating.

The Riad is ABSOLUTELY WONDERFUL. It exceeds any web presentation.

The light within it; its light, balanced, heritage mind soothing ambiance - almost ZEN - of cool tranquility and efficiency.

It is spotlessely clean on arrival, and always during one's stay.

An efficient staff, which one lightly takes notice, given their discretion, whilst catering for one's every needs and requests. Their genuine sympathy and committment to resolving any matter thrown upon them, be it securing a booking for a venue, contracting a guide, or whatever else.

Driss and Yashmin were absolutely excellent.

We had an initial evening dinner in the Riad with music and entertainment which went excellent: timely, genuine, excellent guitarists, and very good professional dancers.

Out of curiosity we visited two other Riads (one just down the road) and the comparisson was overwelming; Las Especias is ever so much better that there actually is no comparisson.

We are still in the cloud of the Riad's quality and balance.

I can not recommend it more. A must. It went so far as after having an afternoon tea in Mamounia a member of group mentioning, literaly: I would not trade if for Las Especias.

A last note to emphasise that one feels literally at home. It makes one wish to go back almost immediately.

Thank you José Bernal for all your efficent handling leading up to the visit; for creating such a delightfull place.

Room Tip: If possible choose rooms up stairs, and within these, Bab Agnou or Bab Doukala. Notwithstanding Bab...
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  • Stayed May 2013, traveled with friends
    • 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.
jose b, Gerente at Palacio de las Especias, responded to this review, May 10, 2013
Hello Afonso,

Thank you so much for your kind remark, it has touched us a lot.

We are very pleased everything was so perfect. Palacio de las Especias works so hard for having everything perfect. We pay a lot of attention in the little details which make the difference in order to our guests had the ideal holidays.

Is our pleasure to have kind and charming clients like your friends and you. Driss, Yassin and all the staff greet you.

If you visit Marrakech again we will be delighted hosting you again. Having wonderful clients and friends as you make our work a real pleasure, So, what to say, just thank you.
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London, United Kingdom
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 30, 2013 via mobile

If you're visiting Marrakech don't even consider staying anywhere else but here! From the moment we stepped through the door we knew this was a beautiful place. All the staff were so friendly and helpful, nothing was too much trouble. The riad itself is stunning, we stayed in the El Khemish room which was gorgeous. Breakfast was delicious - a different selection of yummy baked pastries every day. After a busy day exploring the amazing city, walking through the riad doors is like being greeted with a warm hug! I really can't rate this place highly enough. Go now!

  • Stayed March 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
jose b, Gerente at Palacio de las Especias, responded to this review, March 31, 2013
Hello Emma!!!
Thank´s a lot for your kind opinion. We feel happy to see another satisfied visitor.
We are happy to read your great experienc, it´s the reward of our work.
We wish to see you back again and of course we will be glad to receive your family and friends.
Our team sends you a warm greeting, (Driss, Youssef, Yassine, Loubna, Fatima, Jamilla)
Best Regards.
Jose & Higinio
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Madrid, Spain
Contributor
12 reviews 12 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 20, 2013

This wonderful riad is the perfect spot to visit the amazing city of Marrakech. Not only because its perfect location in the old town but also because its charming atmosphere, nice staff, comfort and care in every detail.
The breakfast memorable, and my room with a tub like that you see only in the movies so I took pictures and sent them to all my friends ( it's better if I don´t show those photos here, ha ha!!)
One of the nicest places I have ever been in my life. I'll be back (hopefully soon!)

Room Tip: tell them to get my room!! one with a brass bathtub...(I don´t remember the name)
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  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 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.
jose b, Gerente at Palacio de las Especias, responded to this review, February 21, 2013
Hello Alberto!!!!
Thank you so much for your advisor. We really appreciate them. We are very happy you had a great time in our hotel boutique. We work hard to have everything perfect for our clients.
Hope you see you back soon in Palacio de las Especias.

Best Regards,
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Barcelona, Spain
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 20, 2013

We have just returned from our stay at the Palacio de las Especias and words cannot express my feelings about this place and the wonderful team here. It was our first (and certainly not last) visit to Marrakech. The people here are truly unique. Genuine warmth and kindness infuses this place. The smiles, care and attention are amazing. You are made to feel like part of their 'family' and that this is your home.

Some things:

The breakfasts are so tasty and good.
The beautifully decorated rooms. Spotlessly clean.
The stunning Riad and rooftop terrace where we spent many hours chilling out in the tranquility.
The attention and kindness of people working there.

Believe the reviews on this place. It is amazing. We are already preparing to return next year.

We wish the staff there health, love and happiness and look forward to our next visit.

  • 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.
jose b, Gerente at Palacio de las Especias, responded to this review, February 21, 2013
Thank you so much for your kind and warm advisor. We are really happy with the final result and with our team. Hope you repeat many times in Palacio de las Especias. You will be very welcome!!!
Looking forward to see you soon!!

Best,
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San Diego, California
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 8, 2013

My girlfriend and myself were so lucky to be the first to stay in this amazing Riad!!

The luxurious Riad has a great location about 10 minute easy walk to Djemaa el Fna. Includes breakfast & Free WiFi

Palacio de las Especias was opened in Dec 2012 after a couple years of meticulous renovations by the owners. Jose did a wonderful job of keeping the historical integrity of the Riad. As you enter a feeling that you have walked into a luxurious palace from the 18th century transcends. There are doors and other accent pieces throughout from hundreds of years ago that decorate The Riad . The guest rooms were designed with great detail, including lighting, bedding and local wood work. In the bathrooms there are bear claw bathtubs.

Jose and his team provided second to none service even inviting us to go out to dinner with him.

The detail and service is truly what separates this Riad from the hundreds of others in Marrakech. After a long day wondering the souks this is a perfect Riad for relaxing.

On my next trip to Marrakech without a doubt I will be staying here again.

  • Stayed October 2012, 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 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
jose b, Gerente at Palacio de las Especias, responded to this review, January 9, 2013
Hello Bryan!!!
I hope you are fine.
Thank you very much for your advise. You was our first client and now you are again our first adviser, so clearly you are the NUMBER ONE.
We will be happy if you decided come back to visit us again, for us it will be a pleasure and sure we can open one bottle of good wine while talking.
Best regards!!!
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Additional Information about Palacio de las Especias

Address: Sidi Bouamar 35, Quartier Riad Larrousse, Medina, Marrakech, Marrakech 20000, Morocco
Location: Morocco > Marrakech-Tensift-El Haouz Region > Marrakech
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( Wi-Fi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #10 of 1,053 B&Bs / Inns in Marrakech
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
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