We really enjoyed our stay at this Riad. Everyone was so helpful and very nice. We feel we have new friends in Marrakech. It's decorated quite lovely and very clean. You'll doubt this as you wait outside the door when you arrive, but have faith! It's located in a quiet neighborhood but still inside the Medina so you're close to the grand plaza, the souks, great restaurants, and the oldest Mosque. In fact there is a small mosque close to the hotel which helps eager visitors to rise early! :)~
This Riad also has it's own Hammam (self service, but private) which is quite nice at the end of your busy day. We recommend on your busiest tour day to reserve in advance along with dinner from the Riad kitchen for a nice quiet romantic night in.
*Consider renting a scooter for a day to tour outside the Medina (~200 dirham/day)
*Take an excursion (with a guide or with your rented scooter) to Atlas Mountain - there are many fun shopping stops there, small mountain villages, great views, and lunch along the river (and a waterfall (or 6) at the end of the road)
*The only store to sell wine and spirits is the big supermarket (ACIMA or s'thing like this) in the new part of town. It's easier with a scooter, but walkable (likely 60 minutes round trip). It's nice to share a bottle of wine in the Riad Hammam or for an afternoon break on the sun patio.
*there are a few small little shops in the Riad neighborhood or off the main plaza that sell cheap shampoo, shaving cream, etc. (you don't have to do to the big supermarket for this)
*The spices we bought have been fabulous as we've already been cooking at home recreating some of our favorite Tangines. We found the best prices in the Spice Souk.
*Take a Hamman spa visit in your first day as you'll likely want to do this every day of your visit. You can find several that provide couples services -private just for you two - or many traditional that are women only in the AM and men in the PM.
*Our favorite points of interest were the Palace Bahia, the old school Ben Yousef, and the garden of Yves St. Laurant. The museum store there also had the nicest earrings I think.
*The Opera theatre in the new part of town is worth a visit and may be restored when you visit. We missed seeing Moroccan independent films, but I understand they have some talented works.
*Plan 3 or 4 nights max in Marrakech as it's quickly discovered. It's a 2 hour train ride to Casablanca and the souks of FES (along with it's historic Medina) are highly recommend.
*We had no health issues tasting the food in the main plaza. It's recommend to eat with your fingers and the bread (they only rinse the utensils there we're told). Try to eat where you see locals, we feel the food is better and cheaper there :)
*We dined at some great places.. we found a great Lebanese place on our way west from the Palmerie, CozyBar in the Jewish square was excellent (we actually had sushi there) and Mama Ti Lee near the large Hamman Z... something near the Palace Bahia on the east side of the Medina is not to be missed!
Note - Mama Ti Lee is hard to find, but worth it!
We also enjoyed a few lunches at the Cafe d' espice (this is in a small plaza by the carpet souks. There are two tall restaurants here with sun decks great for people watching and sunsets).
*Touring the tanneries is also very interesting though hopefully you'll get led to one with nice leather goods to choose after your visit (it's nice to buy s'thing and they will try to sell you hard) - a nice tip for the tour is also a good substitution for purchase)
*Best to get a ride from the airport from the hotel - you can request when you confirm your reservation. It is half the price (or less!) verses random taxi from airport. The car will drop you at the entrance to the alley which is also very close to the hospital (it's too narrow for cars to bring you all the way to the Riad door). Follow the alley down and around past the mosque then straight for many steps. Don't turn right - the door to the Riad is just past that right alley then. It seems far when you first arrive, but it's not bad when you know where you're going.
The Riad will give you advice on where to change money and almost everything else. They are wonderful. Great place to stay close to the action in the old city yet on the edge so it's quiet at night.
Thank you very much!
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