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“Cheap, nice riad” 3 of 5 stars
Review of Dar Elma

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Dar Elma
81 Derb Sidi Bouamar | Riad Larousse, Marrakech 44000, Morocco   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #571 of 1,031 Marrakech B&B and Inns
Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Senior Contributor
32 reviews 32 reviews
21 hotel reviews
Reviews in 22 cities Reviews in 22 cities
37 helpful votes 37 helpful votes
“Cheap, nice riad”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed May 5, 2012

This is a nice little riad with a pretty interior and a lovely roof terrace. The location is good and away from the noisy marketplace. The staff were friendly and offered a very warm welcome. The bed was comfortable and the riad was very quiet which meant we slept well.

However, the cleanliness of the room was a bit lacking and the towels were smelly and damp, we tried to get these changed by leaving them in the shower but they did not replace them. The breakfast was a bit skimpy with very small portions and for some reason we were asked to settle the bill halfway through our stay which was a little weird.

All in all, our stay here was nice and a pleasant way to start our trip through Morocco.

  • Stayed April 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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76 people have reviewed this hotel

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • Italian first
  • Polish first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Reading, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
49 reviews 49 reviews
38 hotel reviews
Reviews in 36 cities Reviews in 36 cities
41 helpful votes 41 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 27, 2010

In a nutshell, I'd go back for more!

Me and a friend booked the spa package which I believe you can book direct through their website (we did so through an agent). It involved one hour of treatments for three days and was incredibly reasonably priced.

The Riad prefers a modern style over traditional Morroccan style. The rooms are minimally decorated with fresh white linen/duvets and comfortable pillows. The rooms are decorated according to elements theme (Earth, Water, Fire etc). We stayed in Water which was a twin room with white and blues. The bathroom was sufficient but smelt a little bit odd (but that's the only fault I could name).

We arranged a meal in the Riad. It was not bad at all. Breakfast was a lovely affair on the roof and the meal set you up for the day.

The "pool" is really a dipping "square" in the small central courtyard.

What sets this Riad apart is that its very female friendly! The guard in the evening even accompanied us to the nearest point to pick up a taxi. Would recommend this place for ladies travelling in a group!

Would definitely recommend. You might want to hire the whole place for a party of 5+

  • Stayed November 2010, traveled with friends
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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Wisconsin
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
2 of 5 stars Reviewed April 8, 2010

I was so turned off by our poor experience at Dar Elma, that I had to write a review in order to encourage others to stay elsewhere. The rude attitude of the manager here bordered on offensive and turned what should have been a lovely stay, into one that we couldn't wait to end. Although the rest of the staff was warm and accommodating, the manager set the tone for the entire stay. She acted as if it was a terrible inconvenience to have us there.

The rooms here are very small and plain for the rate; however the patio and rooftop terrace are very nice. There are so many beautiful, authentic Riads in Marrakesh that offer far more welcoming and sincere service, as well as much better value for your money.

  • Stayed March 2010, traveled with family
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
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Wiltshre UK
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 14, 2008

Arrived tired after a long drive and were welcomed warmly. The tranquility of this Riad is wonderful and yet it's only a few minutes walk from the hubbub of the markets.

Our rooms were comfortable, clean and well-equipped and we found the staff extraordinarily helpful and hospitable - courteous, friendly and amiable all at once.

We particularly liked the cool quietness of the pool area inside Dar Elma and after a hard day walking round the souks and avoiding the motorbikes that whizz in and out of all the alleyways, to sit down at a table and have a drink was blissfully soothing.

Breakfast was something else - climbing up the elegant stairs to the roof terrace to bask in the early morning sun and enjoy a coffee made an excellent start to the day.

What didn't we like? Well, it was quite hard to find really and some clearer instructions - perhaps even a sketch map - would help. But I'm not sure whether Dar Elma or our travel agent should have supplied that. As it was, a number of small lads led us all the way to the door and expected an enormous "fee" for doing so. However, we'd been in Morocco for a week by then and knew what the going rate was: always a lot less than you get asked for!

Go to Dar Elma and you'll feel fresh and alert after a good night's sleep, ready to tackle the traders and enjoy Jama' El Fna.

  • Liked — Tranquillity
  • Disliked — Access, but then all Marrakech is confusing.
  • Stayed April 2008, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
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London
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 8, 2007

We stayed in this Riad over a long weekend and it was definitely a very good choice! The rooms are lovely and the other areas of the riad (dining area, tv room and rooftop) are just as nice! It is lovely and peaceful and the staff are very hospitable and helpful! There is a hammam in this riad, unfortunately we didnt get the chance to try it!

Stayed November 2007
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London
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 25, 2007

Flying in from London was arduous and so our first morning was spent on in the calm of Dar Elma's roof-top terasse. Entering the Dar Elma was such a relief after a long day starting at 4am. After a day of serenely sitting in the sun and drinking tea on the terasse, we chose to make use of the hammam and a massage. This was a key selling point of the riad and we were very glad to experience it in such luxurious conditions. In terms of value-for money, Dar Elma is really hands down! The internal courtyard it is beautifully redone, the rooms are spacious and the hosts are both kind and considerate. If you book a dinner there, it is both high quality and has a real home-made feel. It is centrally placed, down a warren of picturesque alleys in a family neighoubrhood. All of the local residents are very friendly and welcoming. All of the key sites are within a 15-20 minute walk. Although in reality, hanging out and relaxing on the terasse is a must after more than 15 minutes in the hustle-and-bustle of Marrakech. So if you're interested in staying at a great riad with a caring and attentive staff, good food and a in a superly done location try Dar Elma!

  • Liked — Hammam, massage and great staff
  • Disliked — -
  • Stayed April 2007, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
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marrakech
2 reviews
2 of 5 stars Reviewed April 21, 2007

This was the last accomodation of what turned out to be a rather stressful 14 night holiday. We received a lovely warm welcome. The room was beautifully decorated with one of the most comfortable beds I've ever slept in although the noise prevented us from getting a good nights sleep. It was impossible to nap during the day as there is a lot of building work going on next door and in the vicinity. It wasn't to difficult to find compared to some of the other Riads. Breakfast was very dissapointing with a large breadcake, something greasy from the frying pan and a plain yoghurt every day. We left breakfast feeling very dehydrated as we didn't like the sugary mint tea and asked for coffeee. We were served carefully measured two espresso sized cups of coffee in a large tea pot, the orange juice was only the size of a small sherry glass. Everything we asked for we were told 'no problem' but we felt as though it was really. We felt as though we were intruding in somebody's private house as the owners had all their meals there. everything they did for us (eg. phoning for a taxi to the airport, 7 euros) had a price and was put on the bill. We weren't allowed in the kitchen to make tea and had to wait until they were ready to make it. We weren't given clean towels in four nights and although we noticed robes in the cupboard, we weren't provided with them.

  • Liked — The decor and the very comfortable bed.
  • Disliked — The hidden etra costs and stinginess of the breakfast.
  • Stayed April 2007, traveled with family
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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Additional Information about Dar Elma

Address: 81 Derb Sidi Bouamar | Riad Larousse, Marrakech 44000, Morocco
Location: Morocco > Marrakech-Tensift-El Haouz Region > Marrakech
Amenities:
Restaurant Room Service
Hotel Style:
Ranked #571 of 1,031 B&Bs / Inns in Marrakech
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
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