If you want to catch the real Marrakech before it's gobbled up by the frightening pace of the new town developers, you could do worse than booking a long weekend at Dar Jamilla.
We were met promptly at the airport by the driver sent by Dar Jamilla and though cars cant get into the old town we were handed over to a lovely little man at a street corner who led us the last 300 yards to the riad itself.
To be honest as first time visitors to Marrakech the walk was a little scary - In the near darkness we went deeper and deeper into the medina, twisting round tiny alleys that frankly looked like exactly the sort of place I would lead two western tourists if I intended to relieve them of their spending money and dispose quietly of the bodies where they would never be found.
We need not have worried though, our guide took us to the door of the Riad and then with a cheery wave he disappeared into the darkness (without waiting for a tip I might add).
DO TAKE ADVANTAGE OF THIS SERVICE - WE WOULD NEVER HAVE FOUND THE RIAD ON OUR OWN IN A MILLION YEARS.
Dar Jamila itself is lovely.
Not wildly posh (but then it is at the cheaper end of the budget) so dont expect luxury. It was clean though and the hosts were incredibly friendly and helpful.
Mint tea flowed bountifully and the breakfasts were freshly made and exactly what was required before a hard day bargaining in the medina. The roof terrace was beautiful and the little lounge upstairs was the perfect place to unwind with a gin and tonic (bring your own, there's no bar).
We'll definitely go back when we're in Marrakech - cant think of any reason why we'd go elsewhere.
It's down to earth, straightforward, clean and secure.
Dont go expecting luxuries but then if that's what you're after you'd probably be better off in the new town anyway.
*Just one more tip for Marrakech - do try and eat at Dar Moha - you'll have to book and it's pricey for Marrakech about £130 for 2 people but you wont regret it. The setting is beautiful and the food is sublime - where else would you get to use phrases like "is that rose water on the cucumber shavings" without people rolling their eyes in despair?
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- This riad has four rooms and is situated in Quartier Mouassine, a couple of minutes from the souks and Jemaa El Fnaa square. ... more less
- Also Known As:
- Dar Jamila Marrakech