My husband and I arrived in Marrakech after some very tranquil time spent in Imlil. Suffice it to say, Marrakech is the polar opposite of Imlil. We arrived later in the evening. We were dropped off by our driver from a tour company we had hired to take us through the mountains. There was an issue with the parking people wanting to carry our bags and get paid and sadly when we arrived at Dar Maia (a little bit difficult to find) our driver didn't know exactly where it was because no one answered the phone at the dar. We needed change for the porters and no one had, and our hostess at the dar only spoke French and Arabic (the two languages I don't speak). She quickly got Lolita on her cell phone for me to ask some questions (the owners, Alex and Lolita were not at the dar on a regular basis while we were there). Lolita explained that someone else would be at the dar shortly, luckily he spoke Spanish and we were able to find out a restaurant to go to and he helped us find our way to Djemaa el Fna. He was very helpful.
The next morning we had breakfast on the rooftop terrace which was lovely. Alex and Lolita arrived a little bit late and thus we got started our day later than we had hoped (given that we were sampling the entire country of Morocco we had limited time in each place we visited). They assisted us with getting our bus tickets to go to Agadir and told us about the spa they use for traditional hammams. We decided to go with their recommendation. Alex had told me that he would arrange a time, but never left word for me whether or not it was booked. The hostess' cell phone battery was charging and so she couldn't call Lolita to verify until it was charged, and was making our breakfast 10 minutes before we were supposed to be at our hammam. Once she verified with Alex she walked us to the hammam for our reservation and it was closed. We had to walk back to the dar and get in touch with Alex to find out who to contact about our appointment so we could find somewhere else to go if need be before we left for Agadir. 20 minutes later the spa opened and we had our hammam.
We went with Alex's recommendation for this hammam after he explained to us that because he works with them so closely his guests for certain will get exactly what they pay for. I think you should do your research and find a different hammam - there are literally thousands to choose from in Marrakech. The girls at ours were talking on their cell phones and texting - it was unprofessional to a degree and there was a monstrous cockroach climbing up the wall in the hammam room while my husband and I were in there.
Our room however - the turquoise room (Salma I believe) was beautiful. The turquoise room has such beautiful color.
The contact that we had with Lolita before we arrived in Marrakech was great. Her and Alex gave my husband and I their cell phone numbers and advised us to get a phone card and we could call them ourselves if we needed anything.
The location of the dar was fabulous - very close to Djemaa el Fna and the rest of the medina but far enough away that you don't hear the noise of the plaza.
To be fair and honest, I don't believe that our experience was the "norm" for Riad Dar Maia, it was just unfortunately our experience . . . timing can be everything . . . and French, next time we should brush up on our French. Just look at the other reviews . . . they are very contrasting to ours . . but it can happen.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Located a few steps from the spice's market, from Djemaa El Fna Square and nearby the El Bahia Royal Palace in the ancient Medina of Marrakech, Riad dar Maia offers a haven of peace and tranquillity from the bustling of the city centre of this Imperial town.This traditional Guest House in the centre of Marrakesh invites you in its cosy guest rooms equipped in local style and with different colours, in the wonderful inner courtyard with a mosaic fountain.Guest House Riad dar Maia is the ideal accommodation choice for your stay in Morocco. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Riad Dar Maia Hotel Marrakech