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“The real Marrakech.” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Riad Dar Sbihi

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Riad Dar Sbihi
25, Derb Taht El-Khochba, | Zaouia El-Abbassia, Marrakech, Morocco   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #122 of 1,046 Marrakech B&B and Inns
yorkshire
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
“The real Marrakech.”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 16, 2013

Having just spent a wonderful week at Saad and Sybilles beautiful riad we can only confirm what the majority of fellow travellers already know. The riad is located in the northern part of the medina, away from the traffic and noise of central Marrakech. We were fortunate with mild weather and able to have most of our lazy breakfasts on the roof terrace.We also opted to have several lunches and evening meals in the riad all of which were fresh and authentic Moroccon fare. We really enjoyed our time in the Atlas mountains and recommend this trip.We ventured into the souks with Aziz our guide and enjoyed all Marrakech had to offer.A thoroughly enjoyable stay. Thank you Sybille.

  • Stayed December 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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124 people have reviewed this hotel

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (35)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • Italian first
  • Any
English first
Bucks
Top Contributor
106 reviews 106 reviews
18 hotel reviews
Reviews in 26 cities Reviews in 26 cities
59 helpful votes 59 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 5, 2013

Riad has been rebuilt in traditional style - beautiful rooms and courtyard. Very tranquil although be prepared for call to prayer at 0530 every morning from next door mosque and motorbike noise if you have rooms next to the alley. Location is Bab Taghzout about 20 min walk north of Jemaa el Fna - not the location shown on TA's map. Service was fantastic - rooms were very clean. Breakfast was served on roof terrace - we loved it - orange juice, mint tea & coffee, yoghurt and pastries, bread and different jams which came in little tagines which were very pretty. Every morning there was also a little morroccan speciality to try - delicious. Riad has two lounge areas but they are not designed for dining although the couple of meals we had were quite good. Why four stars, not five? Mainly because it was very cold in the riad. This would be great and a plus point in the summer but not in late November. Our room was cold, the lounge areas were cold. The roof terrace was only just warm enough for a late breakfast. (Although wonderful later on for sun bathing). Supposedly, the air conditioning is reversible but it took about 3 days for our room to warm up and the cavernous bathroom was like an ice box. Sybille was kind enough to supply an electric heater which made it far more bearable. And it's no good waiting for someone to sit in the lounge and then put on the rather feeble reverse air-con. So we spent a lot of time shivering in our room under blankets. I caught a cold and the only english TV channel was BBC News! This would be a five star riad in the summer but I think they have to realise we need warm rooms in the winter.

Room Tip: Suites are larger with seating area. Rooms on alley side are noisier.
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  • Stayed November 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 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.
New York City, New York
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 10, 2013

We had a wonderful time staying at Dar Sbihi. The rooms are small but very comfortable, clean, and characteristic of a true Riad. Breakfast was provided on the roof in the mornings, which was a great start to the day. Sybille (the owner) was incredibly helpful with her advice on places to go both within Marrakech and in the surrounding area. The evening we arrived, she sat us down for tea, went over a map of the medina with us first thing, and then left us to the quintet of Moroccan musicians who happened to be staying there as well. It's amazing that the place was available on such short notice. We were even able to stay one extra day, which we spent going to the Berber Market a half hour outside of town.

Words of wisdom--the location of the Riad on maps we found online was not correct, and apparently they know this and simply haven't had luck getting it changed. So don't rely on that alone to get you there.

Also, under no circumstances should you try to drive into the medina, especially in the evenings, as the major throughfares are filled with people and the smaller streets are too narrow to drive through comfortably (plus, the medina is a very confusing place at first). My recommendation would be to park outside the medina, get a taxi as far in as they can go, and then walk the rest of the way. It's unfortunate but works pretty well.

Room Tip: All the rooms are surprisingly quiet, although if it's a busier time of year you might want to g...
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  • Stayed November 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 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.
Cymru
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 14, 2013

Peaceful, cool and beautiful oasis within the walls of the crazy city of Marrakech. Sybille is the perfect host. We ate in every evening and Sybille's cooking is delicious. We enjoyed the breakfasts and sunbathing on the roof in the afternoons after hectic mornings in the Souk. Saad, Sybille's husband, is very amusing. Room was very comfortable.

Positioned in the North of the city it only takes 15/20 mins to walk to the Jamaa el Fna Square. We found it hard to relax completely in many areas of the souks as the cars, dumper trucks vans and particularly scooters come at you from every direction. They never seem to hit anyone but it's very disconcerting.

Tips: 1) To orient yourself in the souks remember that the satelite dishes face south 2) If you hire a taxi to go to the mountains ensure the driver speaks English. Our trip was spoiled as we couldn't discuss prettier destinations and ended up in a rather tacky, dirty village in the mountains.

Had a great send off on the final evening when S&S arranged a Berber group to play (and dance) for us. Fantastic!

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 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.
Leicester, United Kingdom
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 11, 2013

Just returned from a one week stay at this Riad. Saad and, in particular, Sybille (the owners of the Riad) did everything possible to make our stay lovely.

Upon arrival, we were greeted with beautiful music in the candle lit courtyard and fresh mint tea. It was too late to eat as we didn't arrive until around 11pm, but we were greeted warmly and given lots of information about Marrakech to take to our rooms. Sybille then offered to arrange a guide to show us around the Souks the following day, but upon checking, the guide was already booked, but that was not a problem.

We booked a superior twin room, which was tucked away from the courtyard by the pool. It felt very private and secluded which was lovely. Before settling, we were shown to the suite and offered it as an upgrade for a daily fee, which we decided not to do. The facilities in our room were traditional Moroccan in decor and the room was very comfortable. The air conditioning was powerful and very welcome as the weather was so hot! The shower pressure was also great and always lots of hot water as it's all solar powered. Came to love the call to prayer in the morning, but there was one wild bird that used to arrive daily which would chirp so loud, it felt like it was on our doorstep! Sybille explained that it was just a visitor, as the birds kept by the Riad in the beautiful courtyard produced the most relaxing sounds.

The courtyard itself is just a vision of peaceful tranquility. The central fountain was filled with colourful fresh flowers and lit beautifully at night. The night we ate our complimentary meal, Sybille and Saad arranged a little surprise in the courtyard which I shan't spoil on here but was very lovely!

The front door to the Riad is so unassuming, off a busy Medina street with mopeds and donkeys and a local sellers market. Complete chaos and noise. But when you step into the front door and through to the courtyard, it's like being somewhere completely different. Birds are chirping away, candles are lit and you can hear little-to-no noise from outside. The staff are incredibly attentive and are always on hand to help you out. There was only us and one other couple but at no point did the owners or the staff feel intrusive. In fact, Sybille was always around to chat to about Morocco or offer advice. We had dinner one night too, and the food was lovely.

There are no keys to the Riad provided, but you can ring the bell and be let in. Also there are no room keys provided, which unnerved us a bit at first but you soon realise that the place is so peaceful and well staffed that it's nothing to worry about.

Breakfast is continental style each day, different main items daily, and it's served on the roof terrace. The flies bothered us though (you'll experience house-flys all over the city, especially when eating) but Sybille happily moved our breakfast to the courtyard. Very accommodating indeed. Also, she was playing some beautiful classical music in the courtyard one morning. When I asked what CD it was, she proceeded to write down all the tracks for me so I could find them! Little touches matter, and this stay was full of them.

The Riad also offers a great rate of exchange when changing euros into dirhams. All in all, we just had such a lovely stay here. It is located in the northern part of the Medina, but you can get everywhere in the medina on foot, including the main square, or anywhere in Nouvelle Ville for about dh20 (2 euros). Sybille gives you a business card with the accommodation details on. If you get lost, you call and they can help you out. And in the medina - you WILL get lost!!

If you want to experience Marrakech in the way it was intended, don't go to a big chain hotel, stay in a Riad and experience true Moroccan hospitality. And if possible, stay in this one and let Sybille and Saad look after you they way they did with us.

Thanks for everything Sybille, from Chris and Elton

Room Tip: All rooms were lovely but the superior twin was very secluded and private with a lovely bathroom.
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  • Stayed October 2013, 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 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Milton Keynes
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 4, 2013

We just got back from a week in Marrakech and we stayed here for our visit. It was a great place to stay if you really want to experience Marrakech as you are right by the Souk and about 15 minutes from the main square on foot, in fact you can get pretty much anywhere in the medina on foot want to. We were greeted by Sybille and Saad on our arrival, they settled us straight in and gave us mint tea and little home made treats to eat. It's like a sanctuary as the streets outside are so noisy but as soon as the door closes behind you you can't here any noise and all you can smell is the incense from the courtyard. They also offered us a full on dinner even though it was past 10pm! Sybille took us through the check in and Saad arranged for a guide to come the next morning and show us around the souks. We would definitely recommend taking them up on this, Aziz was our guide and he was fantastic! He makes sure you know how to get to certain landmarks so you always know how to get back to the riad and he teaches you a few tricks of the locals as well. The rooms are really well kept and you have everything you need, the plumbing in the medina is really old so you have to make sure you leave the plugs in the sink and bath when you go out or you'll be able to smell the drains when you get back! This isn't just the riad, this is anywhere in the medina. The roof terrace is a lovely place to relax, there are wild birds and pet birds in the courtyard of the riad all day and they sound lovely when your sunbathing on the terrace above them. The staff are really nice and helpful, they will do anything they can to help you and make you feel welcome. Saad knows everybody in the area and is really proud of the medina so he'll tell you anything you want to know and can arrange anything you need from taxis into the new town to a 2 day excursion into the mountains. Definitely would recommend this as a place to stay if you visit Marrakech. The only thing I would say is that it's probably not worth paying much extra for a suite as we did this and other than a seating area we didn't really feel there was any particular advantage as a couple, if we had children it would obviously be a different story but not worth the extra for just two people.

Room Tip: We had a look at them all and any room will be lovely, you can't go wrong!
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  • Stayed September 2013, 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
    • 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.
essex
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 1, 2013

We have just returned from a magical trip to Marrakech made more magical by staying at the wonderful Riad dar Sbihi. Run by the most professional yet warm and friendly couple - Sybille and Saad.Riad dar Sbihi is in a residential area of the ancient medina and is like being transported back to mediaeval times, sometimes you do almost feel you are intruding on a way of life unchanged for centuries just by walking through, I certainly felt it was appropriate to dress in a manner respectful to the Muslim community here by covering shoulders and legs when passing through this area.
The Riad is peaceful, beautiful, food amazing and has an attentive yet discreet approach to hospitality, I stayed here over my birthday and it was one I will never forget . Would never stay in a hotel in Marrakech having stayed in such authentic and atmospheric accommodation.
Thomson (who we booked through) were non existent, we were given a number for the rep if we needed him rather than him coming to see us, so we booked a guide and driver locally which was a far better experience than an organised coach trip to see the sights. We could manage our own time and visit places at our leisure. Thank you Sybille and Saad for a fabulous time we hope to see you both again before too long .............

  • Stayed August 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 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.
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Additional Information about Riad Dar Sbihi

Address: 25, Derb Taht El-Khochba, | Zaouia El-Abbassia, Marrakech, Morocco
Location: Morocco > Marrakech-Tensift-El Haouz Region > Marrakech
Amenities:
Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #122 of 1,046 B&Bs / Inns in Marrakech
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Large classical riad (1st category) offering 5 rooms, 3 mini suites and 2 suites around a central courtyard adorned with a fountain in the middle of 4 gardens. All traditional rooms have air conditioning, satellite TV, minibar, safe, phone, hair dryer. Heated pool (5m x 3m), hammam, meals on request, parking. Personal service by the owners who live in their riad. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Riad Dar Sbihi Hotel Marrakech

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