With only a three day break in Marrakech, my partner and I couldn’t believe how much we relaxed, and it was all thanks to the Riad el Fenn. From the moment of arrival at the airport, everything was supremely easy and well-organised, and an absolute pleasure. It made for the perfect short break.
What particularly makes the place is the staff, who are endlessly helpful and kind; nothing was too much trouble. There wasn’t a single exception. The riad itself is just beautiful; a series of courtyards, open spaces and cosy interiors to fit any mood at any time of the day or night. A particular highlight was the sumptuous breakfasts on the roof terrace, available until midday, with the sound of the muezzin from the nearby Koutoubia mosque floating across the air. That was after waking to flasks of tea and coffee, together with some sweet nibbles, to take in our room. If only real life was like this…
The roof terrace was a great place to spend hot afternoons too, under canvas awnings or wallowing in the plunge pool, idly dozing or reading. I had a great massage, and my partner tried the hammam, both of which were brilliant and invigorating. Otherwise, we found our favourite corners in the courtyards, by the pool or in the very relaxing bar and restaurant (the food was great too).
Our room was magical; everything as you’d want it, including a sunken marble bath and a massive, comfy bed that gave us both some brilliant nights’ sleep. Best of all, we had the riad’s colony of tortoises living by our door, which gave us many lovely moments (and a stack of photos!).
Marrakech is a wonderful place for a few day’s blast of colour, spice and excitement. The riad is right in the heart of the old medina, yet when you come back through the big wooden door, it makes for such a deliciously quiet contrast with the noise and tumult of the souks and alleyways. Rarely have I stayed anywhere that gets everything right, but the Riad el Fenn really did. We’ve been back home a couple of days now, and it all feels a bit like a dream – but one of the loveliest dreams you could ever have. Thanks to all at the riad, for they’re doing a superb job. We will be back.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- With 20 individually styled rooms and suites, a four-bedroom private riad, 3 swimming pools and its own hammam spa, El Fenn is a unique boutique hotel combining grandeur and historic architecture with hideaway nooks, terraces and gardens - making it the most peaceful place from which to enjoy Africa's most exotic city.Our story began with two friends on the hunt for a small riad to buy as a holiday home. It was 2002 when Vanessa Branson and Howell James walked into the almost ruined courtyard of one of Marrakech's formerly great private homes. Nearing dusk and with the sound of the muezzin's call to prayer echoing in the air, they instantly fell in love with the atmospheric house which was being sold with three smaller neighbouring homes. They soon realised that their holiday home was going to become so much more.At the time, only a handful of Marrakech's riads had been converted to small hotels and Vanessa and Howell knew they wanted to open a place offering something different – a home from home retreat that combined great food and service with the spirit of the building's past and a contemporary decorative twist. During a two-year renovation, local craftsman used traditional techniques to breathe new life into the building. Polished lime plastering was used in a rainbow of colours to create walls, baths and bed frames, original tiling was renovated and carved cedar ceilings restored. Retro furniture sourced from local flea markets was combined with one-off bespoke pieces to create a unique interior. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Riad El Fenn Marrakech
- Riad El Fenn Hotel Marrakech