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“Riad Meriem is a beautiful and tranquil retreat” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Riad Meriem

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Riad Meriem
97 Derb El Cadi, Azbest | Medina, Marrakech, Morocco   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #123 of 467 Hotels in Marrakech
London
Contributor
11 reviews 11 reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
“Riad Meriem is a beautiful and tranquil retreat”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 28, 2008

Upon arrival within the Medina walls from taxi & thereafter by foot to the Riad its a mini adventure, to give any further clues would spoil your experience, other than wear comfortable shoes. The Riad is situated perfectly for exploring Marrakech.

On stepping into the magical Riad, expectations are met with a warm welcome from Cirus with his useful 'top tips', and a glass of delicious freshly squeezed orange juice.

We stayed in the delightful 'Ivory' room, I loved the sunlight filtered onto the bedroom wall from the filigree window. So pretty.

Breakfast on the roof terrace was a wonderful relaxing start to our day. Enjoy evening drinks on the roof terrace in the cool of the night. The plunge pool is refreshing to relax in and soak after walking the souks. The Riad is absolutely gorgeous at night time, the Moroccan lighting is stunning.

The Riad is simply a tranquil retreat after exploring the chaotic streets of Marrakech. Enjoy!

  • Liked — Comfortable large bed, simple and tasteful in keeping with the Riad
  • Disliked — Nothing
  • Stayed April 2008, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
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92 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (20)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
london
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 18, 2008

Riad Meriem, Marrakech, Morroco;
A Mouthwatering Experience of Marrakech

I have just visited the above, for me the first time in a riad, but one of many trips to North Africa.

A female alone I could not have felt safer or more relaxed and likened it to "A slice of home meets out of North Africa".

There is English and French speaking management on hand 24 hrs a day offering first hand local guidance, advice and a new companion. The comfort was luxourious and unique adding to the overall experience. The food, when given notice, offered every type of flavour, plentiful and very fresh. From visiting 9 of the top restaurants I found the cuisine at the Riad very hard to beat.

The riad is local to the medina and represents the best of all African and cosmopolitan characteristics. As a fan of art; it was refreshing to find authentic art and photography to admire when not delving through the miriad of books on offer. After a long and enjoyable day out in the African heat and the bustle of car and donkey jammed streets I was able to find inner peace and relaxation in the cool silence of the courtyard before dinner on the terrace.

The rooms are safe and private with night security, beds comfortable with fine cotton linen and showers large enough for a party. The morning arrives with local birds encouraged by the ample natural flora surrounding the interior of the riad. Up the stairs to a sunfilled terrace for a hearty breakfast where again fresh local fruit and cheeses were on the table to enjoy.

I have since recommended the experience to others who have only been refreshed and amazed with Riad Meriem.

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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Birmingham, England
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed May 12, 2008

We stayed at the Riad Meriem for 4 nights and, for the first time ever, we could not wait to leave and get home.
Whilst the Riad Meriem is OK inside (and only OK!), the location and what awaits you once you step outside the front door is unbelievably BAD, especially at night when it's as intimidating as it gets.
We booked this RIAD in the heart of the Medina because we wanted to experience the true culture, etc .. of Marrakech, plus this RIAD's website portrayed a high standard, boutique style hotel with character, etc ....We stayed in the Star Suite which is located on the top of the staircase, above the front main door which meant we heard just about every movement in and out of the RIAD! You really should stay on the outskirts and maybe travel into the Medina for a day which enables you to get out and about to see the rest of what fantastic scenery and landscapes in the Atlas Mountains, etc ....
In summary, and as advice to potential travellers, I would NOT recommend this RIAD and would probably not recommend Morocco full stop!

  • Liked — Nothing
  • Disliked — Location
  • Stayed April 2008, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 30, 2008

Found this little place on the internet and so glad I did ! Any couples travelling to Marrakesh looking for a slice of Moroccan decadence should head for this place. You get met from your taxi and taken down winding alleys then through an inconspicuous wooden door and it's like stepping into a secret garden. Suddenly there's birds and flowers and the lovely Hassan and Karima asking what you'd like to drink ! We stayed for a weekend in the Star Suite which has some really cool lanterns hanging from the ceiling and a huge shower. On the verandas and in the lounge there's some really interesting artwork and down in the courtyard there's a plunge pool if you get too hot lounging on the roof terrance ! We ate on the roof terrace of the riad on the first night which was delicious and so romantic ! and then headed out into Marrakesh for some exploring the next day. You're only 5-10 minutes from the souks at Riad Meriem and they even give you a mobile so that if you get lost Hassan (the manager) will come and find you on his scooter ! Would definately recommend it, it's fabulous !

  • Liked — Cool decor, great food and convenient location
  • Disliked — Nothing
  • Stayed November 2007, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London
Contributor
20 reviews 20 reviews
17 hotel reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
22 helpful votes 22 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed March 31, 2008

Just back from a three night stay at Riad Meriem. There is no doubt that this is a sumptuously designed house and that all the positive comments that the other reviews make are valid. The location is great, it is an oasis of calm, the hospitality is very welcoming and the overall aesthetic is very “boutique”. Why then am I not giving a four/five star review? Well, this may be as much to do with the experience of staying in a small riad as it is about Riad Meriem in particular but, given the prices that are being charged, I don’t think that this place represents value for money; my abiding impression is that Riad Meriem represents a triumph of design over service.

A few observations:
- Our room (the Red Suite) was dark. Very dark. Even with all the lights on, we struggled to be able to find our way around. It is a design-led Riad so perhaps we should be more accommodating in our views but, given the amount we were paying, we felt that at the age of 40 we shouldn't have to struggle to find things in the room because of poor lighting.
- The “Suite” was also just an average sized room with a bathroom attached but no connecting door – this latter fact really should be made clear in the room details. Describing it as a "suite" really is a bit much.
– The breakfasts were distinctly average: just coffee, orange juice and pancakes. Breakfast is also taken "as a house" round the same table on terrace. Not a problem in itself, but perhaps not everyone's preference.
- A number of basic things went wrong that shouldn't at this price. On our first night there was no hot water - instructions were to wait 15 mins then try again - which did work fine. Then the bath takes around 40 minutes to fill up – this is normal and is just because it’s so big. (Which begs the question: why put in such a big bath? Presumably, because it looks good.) Requesting drinks during the course of the day took time - 15/20 minutes from order to delivery. There was no hair dryer in the room – we had to ask for one which was provided immediately. These might seem small things but they accumulate very quickly to leave you feeling let down.
- The plunge pool is, well, very “plunge”. Little more than a pretty waterhole in the courtyard, but no sense that it’s ever used and, if you did, you’d need to come down two flight of stairs from the rood terrace and then walk back up again.
- Be under no illusions that you are living on top of other people in a Riad of this size. It can therefore be noisy when people come and go, as we found with some late night returners. Equally, we felt that we had to tiptoe around when we left relatively early.
- Finally, Cyrus is a hugely affable host who, along with the rest of the staff, will make you feel fantastically welcome. He does have strong views and will give you a long list of recommendations as to where to eat etc. Lots of people clearly like his approach and appreciate his guidance, but his forthright views won’t necessarily work for everyone.

You will need to decide whether these are the comments of a fussy traveller; indeed, reading them through again myself, it does seem as though they are relatively minor points. All I can say is that they would be fussy if we’d been paying less than a £100 a night - but we were paying twice that.

Equally, you might say that I should have researched the alternatives better and that this is the (very) high price you have to pay at the boutique/designer end of the Marrakech market. If that’s the case, then I’d suggest that you avoid this end of the market altogether unless you want to pay a lot of money to stay in a very well-designed B&B with patchy service in a good location.

Stayed March 2008
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Oxford, England
Senior Contributor
41 reviews 41 reviews
23 hotel reviews
Reviews in 22 cities Reviews in 22 cities
55 helpful votes 55 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 25, 2008

Just in from a five-night stay at Riad Meriem, and it is difficult to praise the place too highly. Booking was simple, through hipmarrakech.com, and although we had no direct dealings with the riad before arriving, everything had been taken care of. Arriving in the dark was very disorientating, especially for first-time visitors - don't panic about the dark and twisting alley if this is when you arrive, the riad is, as promised, tranquil and well-appointed. Manager Cyrus had considerately booked us a table for dinner and arranged transport door to door - there was no need to worry about getting lost (as we certainly would have done) on our first night. Rooms are comfortable and classy - evocative photography and paintings, splendid lanterns and sculptures, subtle textiles all set off by the sheen of polished plaster. The closed nature of these courtyard houses and the lack of cars in the medina mean that nights are almost totally silent. Hospitality and service were as friendly and thorough as one would imagine from people who regard these almost as a matter of honour, and we were thoroughly pleased to have continued advice on eating and sightseeing from Cyrus. The roof-terrace allows for essential decompression time with a drink after the turmoil of the medina, and on the day we could not face entering the hurly-burly again we enjoyed lovely home-cooking by the (welcome, in March) fire at the riad.
If you are keen to visit Marrakech and want to keep a foot in the familiar world of western levels of accommodation and service then the Riad Meriem is a good value option - a great setting with lovely people.

  • Liked — Friendly service
  • Disliked — Slightly dark bathroom
  • Stayed March 2008, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 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.
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Additional Information about Riad Meriem

Address: 97 Derb El Cadi, Azbest | Medina, Marrakech, Morocco
Location: Morocco > Marrakech-Tensift-El Haouz Region > Marrakech
Amenities:
Restaurant Room Service Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#127 Romantic Hotel in Marrakech
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Number of rooms: 5
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Riad Meriem is (in his own words) "a labour of love" for the New York designer Thomas Hays. He has created it with the art lover in mind with a fusion of oriental textiles, exquisite paintings plus his own Fine Art Photography. This exclusive boutique hotel has been entirely crafted by Marrakchi artisans to ensure that it retains its authenticity whilst using the talents of the best local craftsmen. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Riad Meriem Marrakech
Riad Meriem Hotel Marrakech

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