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“Wow!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of El Fenn

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El Fenn
4.0 of 5 Hotel   |   Derb Moullay Abdullah Ben Hezzian | Bab el Ksour, Medina, Marrakech, Morocco   |  
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Ranked #47 of 461 Hotels in Marrakech
Nottingham, United Kingdom
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
“Wow!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 13, 2013

We spent a long weekend here with a group of friends to celebrate a very special birthday (the oh-so-generous Claire’s) and it’s difficult to describe the place other than in superlatives.

Exiting the hubbub of the street through a solid, if somewhat unprepossessing doorway, one is suddenly transported into an oasis of calm, elegant chic – all very much in the traditional Moroccan idiom but with lots of sexy contemporary twists.

The ratio of around 25 rooms to 50 staff gives an idea of the service level. Everyone was hugely friendly and accommodating but without being in the least intrusive - and the grub was top notch, too!

Our ground floor room, accessed from the Tortoise Courtyard (home to free-range tortoises), was spacious and very stylish, complete with semi-sunken marble bath and deluge shower – lovely, and all immaculately maintained.

By way of entertainment, the Tortoise Courtyard is currently the roosting spot for several hundred small birds of various denominations (apparently they do sometimes transfer allegiance from courtyard to courtyard), so be prepared for a cacophony at sunset and sunrise! Please note, however, that the birds’ detritus disappears as if by magic thanks to the efforts of the ever-industrious staff.

And talking of sunrise, it’s well worth taking a hike to the roof terrace first thing (the birds will tell you when!), from which the view is simply breath-taking.

Many thanks again, Willem and Megan, for your tremendous hospitality.

  • Stayed October 2013, traveled with friends
    • 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.
MeganLD2013, Director of Sales at El Fenn, responded to this review, October 24, 2013
The tortoises and the birds are a great feature here at El Fenn - and we're happy that you enjoyed so many other things too! Thanks so much.
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465 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (101)
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English first
London, United Kingdom
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
19 helpful votes 19 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 11, 2013

What can I say...what a place to host your 50th Claire ...a huge thank you to the team at the El Fenn and to Claire XXX The hospitality, service, standards and friendliness was just great, fast and efficient. Pools superb, tortoises wandering around in the reception all very serene. DJ till 4am ...bar manned superbly. Just what we all needed! Bathrooms clean and service good. Lovely food and very healthy, lots of fruits and yogurts too.
Family holiday (not sure) best for adults who want luxury. Hotel provided tour guides, gifts, beauty treatment, afternoon movies, dinners on the terrace, a mean Bloody Mary, and great fresh orange juice too...Perfect for a break with friends and to celebrate in style!

Room Tip: Inner court yard rooms are large and spacious.
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  • Stayed October 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 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
MeganLD2013, Director of Sales at El Fenn, responded to this review, October 24, 2013
It was a delight to host such a great group for this celebration - and we're delighted that you enjoyed your stay so much. Thanks for the kind words!
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Nassau, New Providence Island
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 10, 2013

Spent three lovely nights at The El Fenn in the middle of Marrakech with my wife and mother (who had a separate room). Had a truly wonderful room - exceptionally spacious, clean, and comfortable with an amazingly large bathroom with all the necessary mod cons. We had an upstairs room which, despite being right in the middle of Marrakech, was quiet and overlooked a beautiful oasis - the courtyard below. Especially liked all the comfortable seating, both inside and outside the room, for the required napping and other relaxing episodes. Always felt safe and the staff were extraordinarily helpful and friendly. Food was excellent - very tasty....which was made all the better when taken on the lovely terrace at the top of the riad. Watch out for the adorably cute tortoises that roam the main courtyard!

Room Tip: Stay in room 20! Truly amazing! Ticks all the boxes.
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  • Stayed October 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.
MeganLD2013, Director of Sales at El Fenn, responded to this review, October 24, 2013
The tortoises are always a hit with guests - and glad you liked so much about the hotel. Thanks for taking the time to review.
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Hook, United Kingdom
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 10, 2013

El Fenn surpassed all expectations. Beautifully furnished in true Moroccan style and looked after lovingly.The room was spacious and elegant.The staff were so friendly and nothing was too much trouble. The food was delicious.The courtyards and the pool and room terrace were wonderful places to relax after the busy souks!

Room Tip: Room 21 was wonderful
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  • Stayed October 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
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
MeganLD2013, Director of Sales at El Fenn, responded to this review, October 24, 2013
How pleased we are that we exceeded expectations! Delighted that you had a great stay.
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London, United Kingdom
2 reviews
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 9, 2013

I have recently returned from a perfect stay at El Fenn. I love Morocco, and have visited/toured around the country c 15 times, including at least eight stays in Marrakech at a selection of hotels.

Quite simply - the El Fenn is the best this country offers. From the moment you enter the Riad you experience the perfect combination of Moroccan culture and stimulating quirkiness, while enveloped in the most attentive service. The decor is gorgeous (on a previous occasion I asked to see every room, and over a three day period was able to do so - so cannot understand what the earlier reviewer is referring to regarding her room) and each one is a room I would be more than happy to spend weeks in.

The staff at the El Fenn are the most friendly, attentive and willing staff you could ask for. It is clear that their only wish is for you to be happy and for you to have a great time. If it is sometimes a tad less seamless than in New York or London, that is part of the charm of being in Marrakech rather than being on a work trip in a business city!

The food is delicious. Frankly, even though Marrakech has loads of lovely restaurants, when you are staying at the El Fenn you end up choosing to stay in for most of your meals.....

The spa is small - but has great treatments (lovely hammam, and relaxing massages).

And, finally - the setting. It is possibly the most perfect location for a stay in Marrakech. It is just inside the Medina walls - so, (a) you are in the old part, with the feel of being at the heart of the city, yet (b) it is at the edge, so no risk of getting lost in blind alleyways (and you can catch cabs within 100 yards), which means (c) you can walk to any of the main sites (including the souks and the Yves St Laurent Gardens) without getting lost.

If you have not experienced Riad El Fenn yet - then you must try it soon!

Room Tip: All of them are great, but: if on a budget go for the Tortoise Courtyard (get woken by birdsong - bu...
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  • Stayed October 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 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
MeganLD2013, Director of Sales at El Fenn, responded to this review, October 24, 2013
Dear ClaireJ. What kind words! Thanks so much for reviewing. All best.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 9, 2013

An absolutely fantastic setting for a large group birthday party, offering a wide range of room sizes for various guests, extremely helpful staff, organised group activities and lots of down-home fun. My room (number 10) was particularly special with polished turquoise walls, romantic lighting, huge stone bathtub and massive shower. A maze-like setting of hidden courtyards and intertwining original architecture added to the mystique and allure of Marrakech with high contrasts and drama at every turn. Three days seem to become weeks as the late nights melted into days in a truly festive environment which ironically also offered privacy and quiet when necessary. A terrific place to unwind and enjoy ones' friends. Very near to souks and traditional old city artisans.

  • Stayed October 2013, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 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.
MeganLD2013, Director of Sales at El Fenn, responded to this review, October 24, 2013
So pleased you loved the room, the building and of course the parties! Come back and see us again soon?
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Edinburgh
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 9, 2013

First time ever in Marrakech and, staying in the Riad el Fenn, I now know what Paradise must be like. We were with many friends celebrating a wonderful friend's birthday. The staff were delightful and friendly and genuinely pleased to see us having such a relaxing time. Nothing was too much trouble and every whim was catered for in the most charming way. The rooms are intoxicating and the food quite simply delicious. El Fenn is luxurious but also delightfully unstuffy and unpretentious. Everything about the place is exquisite. Let's hope our dear friend decides to celebrate her xty-first birthday there as well!

  • Stayed October 2013, traveled with friends
    • 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.
MeganLD2013, Director of Sales at El Fenn, responded to this review, October 24, 2013
You were such a great group to have here. So pleased that you enjoyed your stay.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about El Fenn

Address: Derb Moullay Abdullah Ben Hezzian | Bab el Ksour, Medina, Marrakech, Morocco
Phone Number:
Location: Morocco > Marrakech-Tensift-El Haouz Region > Marrakech
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( Wi-Fi ) Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#14 Spa Hotel in Marrakech
#18 Business Hotel in Marrakech
#18 Luxury Hotel in Marrakech
#43 Family Hotel in Marrakech
#48 Romantic Hotel in Marrakech
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:4 star — El Fenn 4*
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

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