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“Highly recommended” 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 #37 of 465 Hotels in Marrakech
1 review
“Highly recommended”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 8, 2011

We filmed this Riad for a series called "Hotels of the World" (or it's real title: "Gwestau'r Byd") for Channel 4 in Wales, UK. We filmed more than thirty locations and for me, Riad El Fenn tops the list for its cool decor and chilled atmosphere in the heart of a bustling medina. Very fond memories of breakfast in the morning air on the roof and the discreet but attentive service by all who worked there.

Stayed April 2010, traveled on business
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501 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 (112)
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English first
Birmingham, United Kingdom
1 review
3 of 5 stars Reviewed February 16, 2011

I agree with the reviewer earlier, who said that room 12 in Riad El Fenn is massively over-priced for what you get. We paid 260 euros to stay in a tiny room. Although the layout is interesting, the fact that the toilet is opposite the door into the room is a bit bizarre! For some reason you also don't get an i-pod dock in this room, which is a shame as the pool pump is just outside on the balcony and makes a loud hum 24 hours a day. The communal areas are nice and we loved the roof terrace, but if you're staying there I would recommend that you request not to be in room 12. Also check your bill at the end - we had around 300 euros extra put on ours, it was completely by accident but it took a long time to sort it out.

  • Stayed February 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
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2 reviews
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 8, 2011

I've just returned from another perfect stay at Riad El Fenn - and I just wanted to say how fabulous it was, even better than before. The new management has really stepped it up a gear while keeping the relaxed charm. I also like the little shop in the main reception which saved me for a last minute gift. Over a year ago I stayed in Room 16 - all sumptuous red leather walls and plush bed. This time I stayed in room 21 which was beautiful and enormous and looked over both courtyards. My flat in Sydney is the size of this room and I could have fit about 20 people in the shower room alone! It's so much fun to stay in different rooms - each one has it's own character and gives me reason to return again and again. Alessandra took us on a tour of the other unoccupied rooms and they each offer something special. The size varies considerably so it's important check which room you have booked and make sure it suits your needs. We went for a cocktail at La Mamounia - and although it was pure marbled luxury - it lacked the character, warmth and authenticity of El Fenn. We could have been in any 5* luxury hotel in the middle east or north africa. We were also really lucky with the weather - hot in the sun and brisk in the shade, perfect for walking around. Breakfast and lunches on the roof terrace were particular delights. The breakfasts really set us up for a day of walking the city - their cinnamon porridge remains my all time favourite and my friend swore by the scrambled eggs each morning. It was also fun to see a group of photography students staying there - I didn't realise that they had courses on offer. Marrakech was quite quiet this time in comparison - several locals explained that tourists are staying away because of events in Egypt. I hope that this in not the case. It is on the other side of the continent and Morocco is a happy place where the royal family is loved and respected by its people. It's a very stable and warm country - every time I go, I feel welcomed and safe. Even better, at El Fenn, I feel like a movie star.

  • Stayed February 2011, 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
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Huddersfield, UK
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 6, 2011

I had heard about Riad el Fenn through friends and got the chance to go and stay in early January.What a beautiful place it is,from the moment you step through the door from what was a typically bustling,noisy street in the old medina you are enveloped in a calm and peaceful luxurious enviroment.Walking to my room, I seemed to pass many courtyards with fountains and lush plants and trees, always with the sound of birds singing and amazingly no sounds from the outside!I could tell as soon as I entered my room that it was no ordinary room,but a very beautiful suite with its very own outdoor sitting area with a plunge pool!The indoors was pretty special too. Everything about this place says quality right from the wonderful staff who couldn't do enough but weren't intrusive to the very high standard of food served.One favourite was the little pastries served on the drinks tray delivered before breakfast to our rooms,a very nice touch!
There can't be many,if any other roof terraces in Marrakech with the chance to play Golf,albeit,crazy golf,swim in one of three pools or just sit and eat a lazy breakfast,lunch or dinner with the most amazing views of both the Atlas mountains or the famous Kotoubia Mosque!I hope it won't be long before I come back again!

  • Stayed January 2011, traveled solo
    • 4 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
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Scottsdale, Arizona
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 5, 2011

A friend from London had recommended Riad El Fenn and after watching a cool utube video I felt this would be a safe haven for me, an attractive female traveling alone to Marrakech. I am so happy I followed my intuition, what an amazing stay for 6 nights. As soon I arrived, Karima, a smart and beautiful young woman checked me in and became like a guardian angel to me for my entire stay. She made sure my every need was attended to, hiring a guide to take me to special places I had on my "to do list" and even called Sayede to come in on his day off to guide me on a carpet buying adventure where he bargained for hours while I relaxed and enjoyed being served mint tea. The Medina is fun but crazy busy and loud so after my shopping excursion was accomplished I preferred just to hang out and relax at one of the pools at the Riad. The service was splendid! What a lovely culture, everyone was so sweet, nice and happy to make me feel at home - all smiling faces. I made a reservation to dine in the restaurant at the RIAD each night as the food and ambiance was too good to risk an outside reservation that might have been a disappointment as well as risky going out alone. The chef came to my table to check on my satisfaction each night. One night the chef surprised me when I requested a recipe, he insisted I join him in the kitchen as he showed me the fresh organic ingredients and how to make it! I had my photo taken with the chefs and kitchen help and they have the photo in the office at the RIAD. On one quiet evening, there were only four of us dining in and Mohammed the bartender decided to play the piano and sing to entertain us - really delightful! I bought 2 of the Moroccan artsy stained glass lanterns from a cool gallery but came up against the odds of them breaking if shipped at an outlandish cost of $800 FED EX cost, so Karima and Jane, (manager of the RIAD) had the lanterns bubble wrapped for shipping but gifted me with a lovely large RIAD canvas bag so I could hand carry them onboard my flight home. What else can I tell you, service with a plus, clean, incredibly different artistic rooms, wonderful food - the best lamb I have ever had. I HIGHLY recommend RIAD EL FENN and I will go back again.

  • Stayed November 2010, traveled solo
    • 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
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Hong Kong
5 reviews 5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed January 24, 2011

My husband and I went to Marrakesh for our honeymoon, we had been searching for hotels on tripadvisor because of the good reviews of this Riad, we finally decided to go for this one, luckily it was just 3 nights .
The room is extremely small, we stayed at room 12, i guess the room is about 12 sqm including the bathroom, there is no seperate room for the washroom so you dont get any privacy at all while using the toilet. Also, there was no space for our baggages, we had to open our baggages right next to the bed, that reminded me of my experience of the budget hotels in Japan....all our clothings were hanging on the wall right next to the bed. Coming from Hong kong i am really suprised that the hotel rooms we get in morocco is smaller than what we get from hong kong with triple of the price.
There are some nice decor at the hotel however considering the price and the service that you get...I DO NOT RECOMMEND this place to anyone.
Breakfast is a bit disappointed, all we get were some pastry and fruits. The overall experience i would say that if it was 80eur -100 eur a night, i wont complain. After this experience i do not know what to expect from a riad of morocco. This is my first review on tripadvisor as i dont normally leave comments/reviews for hotels, I felt that i have to let anyone know what they should expect if they decide to go for this hotel.

Stayed January 2011, traveled as a couple
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Top Contributor
53 reviews 53 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 24 cities Reviews in 24 cities
26 helpful votes 26 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 15, 2011

Cleverly refurbished Riad making it seem like it would have been years ago. Staff very obliging and keen to make your stay a good experience. We had a lovely welcome from manager and staff and a short tour of Riad. The roof terrace is lovely where you can eat, relax and swim in the small pool. Great views. They have two other pools on ground floor. We were lucky to be there at a time when they offered 50% off. At other times they have three nights for two offers. Otherwise it is not a cheap option. But the whole experience was relaxing and good. We liked the food particularly lunch which was special when we shared one meal between three. We took our disabled daughter and one important thing for us was the lift so she could go to the roof.

  • Stayed December 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 4 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.
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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
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) 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:
#10 Spa Hotel in Marrakech
#15 Luxury Hotel in Marrakech
#17 Business Hotel in Marrakech
#25 Family Hotel in Marrakech
#43 Romantic Hotel in Marrakech
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:4 star — El Fenn 4*
Number of rooms: 20
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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