There are already lots of great reviews of this hotel, and we can endorse them all. But before we even arrived, we were very taken with the website which reads like a guide book of Marrakech, constantly updated by the owners who have devoted their careers to specialist tour operation. They realise the importance of a great welcome, and some of the staff who deliver it have been part of the ‘family’ since the outset. The hotel itself is created from 7 riads, re-constructed by local craftsmen with the added luxury of a pool (unique in this part of the medina). From the central courtyard, bordered by the public areas of bar, restaurant, lounge etc, there are passages to the bedrooms around a further 4 courtyards. It feels very exclusive and calm. The decor has been sourced locally, personally by the owner and is extremely tasteful; every room is different, and it’s all spotless. It's really lovely to return to a room that's been freshened up with rose petals, always in a different design, at the end of a hot day exploring. The whole place oozes 'care'. The food has been praised by others already, so I can only echo what’s been said. You must try the hammam and massage too but don’t expect to do anything much with your day afterwards!
Outside the riad, one is transported back in time - the medina is noisy, colourful, vibrant. The kasbah area is the posh end, and the historical palaces are nearby. The central square, Jemaa el Fna is about 10 minutes’ scary walk away, but only scary the first time as you soon realise that the other road users are actually very skilful. We were there around the time of Eid - an important family festival which requires the slaughter of a ram in each home, so for the first few days every second truck and moped (!) was carrying some poor unsuspecting creature. Very biblical.
It is worth taking a guide round the souks - it is so easy to get sucked into shops and feel pressurisedI to buying spices, wooden objects, carpets, etc etc when you may have no idea of the quality. We just realised this at home, using the "35 spice mix" for a chicken dish, to find it quite thin. The Ras el Hanout from Waitrose/Tesco, same thing but with fresher spices, would have been much better. Of course we sniffed a very fragrant sample in the souk, but were sold a ready packed version! This is the only negative comment, however, and has nothing to do with the hotel.
Our thanks go to Tom, Fatima, Nora, Ilham, Mounia, Nawal, Miriam and the others. We have a very happy memory of our stay with you.