My wife and I were first time travellers to Marrakesh and we had heard stories of the chaotic streets, vibrant markets, etc. We speak little French and no Arabic so I was relying on the hotel to help with some day trips and suggestions/ validation on our plans. We could not have been happier with the Maison Arabo Andalouse and Paolo's help throughout our stay.
The Riad (Moroccan term for an large old house that has been converted into a 5-6 bedroom hotel) was perfect. Clean, wonderful old rooms with character, a roof-top garden where we had breakfast served to us every morning and a lovely courtyard with a central water feature and large banana trees.
After a day spent exploring the souks (markets), having some lunch on the roof top terrace of a cafe on Jeema El Fna (Marrakesh's central square) and wrestling with the 1001 motor bikes, horses and cars that seem to be travelling in all directions at once... coming back to the Arabo Andalouse was like entering an oasis. It was quiet, friendly and understated, which I love. It was everything we were hoping for.
Located minutes walk from everything you want to see in the central part of Marrakesh. Paolo (the Italian born owner of the Riad) was amazing and very helpful with suggestions of what to see, when, where to eat, where to buy, etc, etc. There are 3 staff in the Riad... all very attentive and lovely to deal with.
No doubt, Marrakesh is as chaotic a place as I have ever visited... but soooo interesting and rich. Paolo made this experience better by personally seeing to every detail of the trip. From having someone to pick us up at the airport, to organising a day trip to the foothills of the Atlas mountains, to the glass of mint tea and seasonal fruits served when you arrive... he was of invaluable help to us and we would not have seen half the things we did had he not been there to suggest half of it and arrange ALL of it.
You can tell the owner of this hotel is personally involved and invested in your stay.
When I return to Marrakesh I know where I'll be staying.