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“Great Jewel of a Riad” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Riad Julia

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Riad Julia
14, derb El Halfaoui | Bab Doukkala, Médina, Marrakech, Morocco   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #501 of 1,041 Marrakech B&B and Inns
san jose, ca
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
“Great Jewel of a Riad”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 18, 2009

This riad is located about a ten minute walk from the Djamaa El Fna. This riad is beautiful and has a small plunge pool in the courtyard. On the roof there is seating and a tent for feeling the atmosphere of Morocco. My room did not have airconditioning, but I was provided with a fan which did keep me cool. My breakfast was more than ample and promptly served when I sat down. The girl that tends to the food and rooms was very pleasant and most accomodating to my requests. I would highly recommend this riad to anyone visiting Marrakesh.

  • Stayed August 2009, traveled solo
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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71 people have reviewed this hotel

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Hereford
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 4, 2009

We stayed in this riad in July last year. It's not the easiest to find if you are on your own, but there are small signs on the walls pointing you in the right direction. We had arranged for a taxi from the riad to pick us up from the airport, this arrived as planned and dropped us as near to the riad as possible - there was no access for cars down the few alleyways we had to walk to get to the riad. The taxi driver showed us the way. The couple of alleyways that lead to the riad from the road don't feel unsafe as such, but they are darkish and you occasionally get odd looks from the locals leaving their houses. There are also stray and ill-looking cats and kittens littering the alleys! There is however a very nandy shack/shop at the entrance to the alley leading to the riad, which is very convenient for stocking up on water - it's nice not to have to carry havy bottles miles!

We were given the impression that the manager of the riad (Omar?) would be on hand to meet us and indeed throughout our stay to help us with our trip (I think he was the only one who spoke good English). In reality he was there for the first five minutes when we arrived, and we didn't see him after that. He didn't even take our payment - it was the maids/housekeepers who did, and like someone else mentioned, it didn't seem as official as it might be - they didn't give us a receipt and seemed surprised when we asked for one. We didn't have any problems though, it's not like they tried to take payment twice or anything.

They gave us lovely mint tea when we arrived, and we sat in the beatutiful central courtyard while we arranged payment and they took our passport details. The riad is beautiful and traditional. The decor is pretty and unique, if a little tired in places. The small plunge pool is beautiful lined with lights at night, but way to small to swim in, and looked as if noone even went in there for a dip.

Our room was nice - rustic but pretty. There were gorgeous sequinned bedspreads and traditional old Moroccan furniture. There were three of us so there was a double bed and a temporary single bed set us by the side of the double. It was a bit of a squeeze for three of us - two would be fine though. The bathroom was fine. The room and bathroom however were quite dark - the only window was onto the central courtyard, so the room received no natural light. Not great for doing makeup!!! Also as mentioned by someone else, the rooms didn't lock. Maybe this is normal here, but it did worry us slightly, as there was no safe or anywhere to lock valuables. Nothing got stolen, though.

The breakfast in the courtyard was nice - juice and coffee, bread, crepe type things, and jams and butter. Be prepared to eat a lot of bread products in Morocco as they're with every meal! We never got the opportunity to eat breakfast on the roof terrace (although we never asked) - breakfast stuff was always laid out on the tables in the courtyard. We were also never offered mint tea again, which the website makes out is always available. We did ask one day when we came in from sightseeing, and the maids prepared it for us, but they did seem like it was a slight inconvenience.

The location was good - once you figure out where you are, it's only a 10-15 minute walk to the main square, and there are a few restaurants and shops closer.

All in all I would recommend this riad - if you're looking for a cheap-ish, central, pretty riad, but not if you are looking for luxury or great service.

  • Stayed July 2008, traveled with friends
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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Harpenden, UK
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 16, 2009

During our stay the riad was very quiet - there were very few other guests, no sign of a manager, but a very helpful member of staff who was there some of the time and served us mint tea and breakfast. The beds were comfortable and there was a very pretty roof terrace. I was researching other riads at the time for a future visit and we agreed this was the best for the price - the only problem being the lack of hot water. At evening it does get chilly and our showers were very brief! I would only recommend this riad for summer when the lack of hot water would be less of an issue - which is a shame because in every other way it was very good.

  • Liked — Pretty and Quiet
  • Disliked — No hot water
  • Stayed November 2008, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 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.
London
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 29, 2008

A real oasis of calm amongst the chaos of Marrakech. Our room was fine, nice and clean. The best part is the courtyard and roof though. A bit hard to find, we tried to get to it on our own.....which proved very difficult! We never encountered any English speaking staff there, but luckily my rusty French got us understood. Overall a very nice place to stay.

  • Liked — Calmness, courtyard and rood terrace
  • Disliked — Getting very very lost trying to find it
  • Stayed September 2008, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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Milano
Senior Contributor
41 reviews 41 reviews
34 hotel reviews
Reviews in 31 cities Reviews in 31 cities
20 helpful votes 20 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed April 29, 2008

Nice riad, with stilish rooms. However, we experienced some problems: the price for the room (65 euros) was higher than the expected one and probably higher than its worth. We had some troubles with the shower (no hot water), they wanted the money without any registration or invoice, and finally they fussed us with the taxi for the airport (we had to pay it twice!)

  • Liked — the riad
  • Disliked — the welcoming
  • Stayed April 2008, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
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London, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
40 reviews 40 reviews
40 hotel reviews
Reviews in 37 cities Reviews in 37 cities
234 helpful votes 234 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed June 25, 2007

problems arose when our plans changed and we needed an extra night in Marrakech. After phoning ahead and getting confirmation for availability we turned up one day prior to our booking. thinking our custom(or the extra money) will be appreciated by the riad but we're dismayed by the attitude of the manager. they're trying to charge us €65 for one night when the website clearly indicates no room higher than €55 for low season. Distinctly, they were trying to exploit us thinking we were unaware of the prices. We were put in room Hajib where the bed was absolutely squeaky and gave us no sleep at all. on top of all this there was no hot water at all to shower. the manager told us the following day that it's an ongoing problem!!!
After all this they were still trying to charge us €55 for the night when we had no sleep, no shower only a very measly breakfast of jam and bread. Then they had the cheek to ask for €25 for the breakfast which we refused to pay.
we have stayed a further 8 nights in room Amir which was better but the bed was still noisy and the bathroom lights were not fixed after asking several times so my partner couldn't shave at all. what more, towels weren't changed at all during our stay nor was the bedroom hoovered only the bed was made.
The air conditioning system is very old and whenever you turn it on it sound like there is a thunderstorm going on...
Breakfast remained a very skimpy affair of jam and bread which we didn't take after the third morning.
other things worth mentioning
-there aren't staff 24h a day(we have never seen this Omar guy)
-no locks on the doors!!! you will have to ask for a padlock but the cleaning girls don't have the key for it so they won't be able to clean your room unless you leave the door unlocked.
-when the manager assistant pops in, he seems to be lounging in the tv room where he smokes and has his friends around
-sun loungers on the roof terrace have bird poo on them
-as it turns out riad Julia isn't a unique place but has a "sister" riad(riad Sofia) which is an exact copy of it!

  • Disliked — attitude of the scamming manager
  • Stayed June 2007, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 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.
Aussie in Netherlands
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 29, 2007

Great Riad! Has everything you need and more. I especially loved the Berber Tent on the Terrace, the refreshing dipping pool, being served Mint Tea in the afternoon, the wonderful staff and the delicious breakfast. Thank you Omar and staff for making our stay a very memorable experience.

  • Liked — It was an Oasis.
  • Disliked — Nothing
  • Stayed November 2006, 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)
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 Riad Julia

Address: 14, derb El Halfaoui | Bab Doukkala, Médina, Marrakech, Morocco
Location: Morocco > Marrakech-Tensift-El Haouz Region > Marrakech
Amenities:
Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #501 of 1,041 B&Bs / Inns in Marrakech
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Riad Julia Hotel Marrakech

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