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“Not in a nice area” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Riad Charai

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Riad Charai
3.5 of 5 Hotel   |   54 Diour Jdad | Zaouia Abassia, Marrakech, Morocco   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #204 of 465 Hotels in Marrakech
Wokingham
Top Contributor
55 reviews 55 reviews
19 hotel reviews
Reviews in 38 cities Reviews in 38 cities
42 helpful votes 42 helpful votes
“Not in a nice area”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 9, 2012

We have just returned from Riad Charai. When the taxi from the airport stopped in the street for us to walk to the Riad we thought he must have made a mistake. We did not expect what we saw. The street is very run down, smelly, dirty and intimidating. However, there is a huge contrast once in the Riad. It is a beautiful old Moroccan building and the staff are very helpful and friendly. The room was lovely and breakfast was great, served up to 11 am! A member of staff will escort you in the evening if you want to go out for a meal in the Medina or to a taxi rank and they will also collect you to walk you back. I would not like to have been on our own at night time. Be prepared to be hassled every step of the way when you venture out. If you do want an adventure and somewhere to stay within the Medina walls, I would recommend Riad Charai - and do have a hammam.
I would recommend a trip into the mountains to visit the Berber region. The Riad will arrange this for you and you have your own car and driver for the day. We also did the city bus tour which is good value.

Room Tip: We had room number 7 which is a standard room and very pleasant. There are 2 flights of stairs up...
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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102 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (8)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Contributor
19 reviews 19 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 1, 2012

Very serene and comfortable riad, spent 2 nights here late november. Staff very attentive and pleasant, rooms excellent, very good value overall.Ate here one night- tasty- good value and relaxing after eating out for previous 6 night. Wine ok, did not have a choice other than colour. Bit difficult to find even for local taxi drivers. On last morning had a cookery lesson- chicken tagine- very simple but tasted great- lunch for 2- ordered a tagine when back in uk!

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 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 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 19, 2012

I booked Riad Charai from the views expressed on Trip Advisor, and it exceeded every expectation! A little about my partner and I (I find this helps)... We are in our late 20's, We love adventure and getting to grips with the country/city, culture and locals, but want to do it in style and expect quality/ cleanliness.
I fell in love with this Riad. It is located within the maze of the old city, North of the Medina (heart of Marrakech) near the city walls. It will take you 20mins to walk to Jemma el Fna (the main square), but there are plenty of markets and attractions such as the Museum of Marrakesh, and the tanning district close by.
Upon arrival ask your taxi to get you a guide to walk you to the door- you will not find it!!! Expect to tip the guide, but learn the route (5mins walk) so that you dont have to pay and that you fit in, this is not such a tourist hot spot. It can seem intimidating at first, but dont be fooled, the locals are friendly, and it gives a true representation of life in Marrakech, I would not have stayed anywhere else.
Step inside and the hussle and bustle is silenced by the thick stone carved walls and whisper of the luit (traditional music). Once you've made your way to the opening at the centre of the Riad, you are met by exceptional staff (who dont expect to be tipped), the smell of orange and jasmin trees and a pot of mint tea and Backlava (middle eastern treats). The pool is a good size, and it was lovely to sit here at breakfast, and enjoy fresh fruit with yoghurt, Moroccan pancakes/bread, and fresh orange juice.
The Riad mimics the streets in its maze-like layout, our room was on the first floor up a curved marble stairway, we didnt have a view out onto the courtyard but it didnt matter! The sheets were fresh and white, lots of storage, great clean en-suit and lots of Moroccan-style features. Perfect for a city stay.
Venture to the top of the building and on your way you'l find a traditional Hammam and massage suite for very reasonable prices, we indulged ourselves and it was lovely, great after a day of exploration.
Reach the top and the views are amazing- I dont understand when people remark that Marrakech has no skyline, yes, all the buildings are the same hight apart form the minaret's that break the terracotta horizon, but for us, it was a change, and a beautiful one at that! The Atlas mountains are clear and surround you. Every evening we came up here, lay on the beds to watch the sun set and the city come alive to the sound of the Mosques call to Prayer.
The food was also amazing, it's a small but perfect menu. The tagine's are all freshly cooked with fresh ingredients and you have a choice of where to dine; Rooftop/ indoor dinning area/ poolside. Cookery lessons are also available, but we didnt have time to try.
Riad Charai is no doubt beautiful, its architecture and traditional freatures blend seemlesly with home comforts, but the reason why we felt like the Sultan and Princess of this dwelling is due to the staff! They are a small team who work well together with great communication between the night and day staff, we were always made to feel safe and at ease. Some speak good English, but French is extremely useful (this is the same throughout the city) as they all spoke it. They hire a very helpful lady (Miriem) who is fluent in English, to sort out your dates of travel, transferes etc. She visits often and can arrange excursions, we felt much safer doing it through her. The staff remember the little things ie where you like to eat, if you prefer tea or coffee, and nothing is too much to ask... Our night porter gave us a tour of the riad even though we arrived very late, recommended and walked us to restaurants and even bought me a tagine on his way to work so that I wouldn't get ripped off as a tourist! One evening when we needed a cash point, he called his friend to come and pick my boyfriend up on his scooter and drive him to the nearest one.
Riad Charai is full of character, if like us you want to live amongst the locals but love the luxury of five-star treatment this is the place to stay.

Room Tip: There is a school next door, but im not sure whch side- just ask if you'd like to be far away fr...
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  • Stayed November 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 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.
RiadShama, Responsable réception at Riad Charai, responded to this review, November 21, 2012
Dear Ciara,

Thank you for your lovely comment and hope that you enjoyed your stay at riad charai
Looking forward to welcoming your at the riad again.

Bets regards,
Meriem
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Antwerpen, Antwerpen, Belgium
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 9, 2012

Beautiful place in the medina of Marrakech, an oasis of rest in the busy city, chill out. We were very lucky to be there all alone, nice contact with the crew, good service, good food, good vibe. We will return for sure. J&G.

  • Stayed September 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 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.
Motherwell, United Kingdom
Contributor
11 reviews 11 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 16, 2012

Great accomodation and service, however be prepared for adventure outside the walls

Room Tip: don't worry when your taxi drops you off in the middle of the square and you get surrounded with...
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  • Stayed April 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 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.
Cambridge, United Kingdom
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 13, 2011

We stayed for 6 nights, including a couple of nights with friends for their wedding. Right in the heart of the northern medina, you experience all the local sights, sounds and smells and may need a bit of help from the riad staff to find your way through the alleyways at first. Entering the riad takes your breath away. It is absolutely beautiful with garden courtyard, small pool and fleur d'orange. Quiet, stylish and clean with lovely rooms, crisp white sheets and luxurious bath towels. At night the place is lit by candles and you can watch the sun go down from the rooftop terrace looking out across the city towards the hills. The staff are great. Zahira helps you plan trips and organises activities (we had a super cooking workshop in the riad kitchen one afternoon) and the rest of the staff are incredibly helpful. Special mention for Mustafa who was a star. A real bonus - the kids loved it too!

Room Tip: Upper rooms with terrace are fantastic
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  • Stayed October 2011, traveled with family
    • 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 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London
Senior Contributor
23 reviews 23 reviews
17 hotel reviews
Reviews in 17 cities Reviews in 17 cities
44 helpful votes 44 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 2, 2006

We stayed there for our honeymoon. Everything was wonderful - room, food, service, atmosphere, location.

The riad is tucked away in the northern part of the medina, well away from the tourist crowds, but we felt that that added to the charm.

  • Stayed September 2006
    • 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Riad Charai

Address: 54 Diour Jdad | Zaouia Abassia, Marrakech, Morocco
Location: Morocco > Marrakech-Tensift-El Haouz Region > Marrakech
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #204 of 465 Hotels in Marrakech
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Riad Charai 3.5*
Number of rooms: 8
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