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“Fantastic Experience” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Riad le Clos des Arts

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Riad le Clos des Arts
Riad Zitoune Jdid, Derb Tbib 50 | Near Dar Si Said and Bahia Palace, Marrakech 40000, Morocco   |  
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WINTER COVER IN PLACE
Ranked #3 of 465 Hotels in Marrakech
Germantown, Maryland
2 reviews
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
“Fantastic Experience”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 8, 2014

My wife and I stayed here for the first couple of nights on our honeymoon and absolutely loved it. Everything about the property was wonderful, however two things that really stood out was the beautifully decorated interior and the helpful staff. Overall, we couldn't have wanted anything better and wish we had decided to stay here (and in Marrakech) the whole time. I definitely recommend having dinner at the Riad at least one night, and take advantage of Georgina and Massimo's advice on day trips and guides.

  • Stayed November 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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909 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (95)
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London, United Kingdom
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 3, 2014

Great place to stay with a real feel of the old market atmosphere. Georgina and Massimo were lovely and gave us very useful tips. Food was great, too. We stayed in the front downstairs room and it worked perfectly for us, as we had our daughter with us.

  • Stayed December 2013, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Manhattan
Senior Contributor
32 reviews 32 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
39 helpful votes 39 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 3, 2014

Initially I was very skeptical about this place. There was a larger, well known riad I wanted to stay at the recommendation of a friend but was fully booked by the time I contacted them. So I searched the internet high and low and found this riad on Tripadvisor. The reason I was skeptical was because it hardly came up on other travel websites or blogs. I wondered if the rating was real or not if no other place really verifies even the existence of it. I have traveled extensively since I was a very young child, and knew better than to trust just one source in a strange land. But something told me just go with it, and boy what great inner voice I had!

I now know that Marrakech is its own world. Small hotels like this one doesn't have any rating systems to go by (other than Tripadvisor in terms of its reach and publicity) and the number of rooms are so small that it's hard to get feedback on the internet compared to larger places (big accommodations have more people visiting, hence more people are likely to post). But I think people are doing justice to this small but lovely place by shouting out how wonderful it is. I am one of them too.

Riad Le Clos Des Arts, although exquisite by itself, is probably characterized by its owners, Massimo and Georgina, and their ever-so-discreet staff. Their hospitality feels genuine and they go out of their way to make everyone happy. Massimo seems to love people and would come socialize when we are lounging in the courtyard. He is never pushy, and would only advise us on anything when we court it. Georgina has eyes all over the place and will offer mint tea as soon as we show ourselves. The riad is impeccably kept thanks to Georgina's architectural background, and is serious about keeping that way as Georgina asked me to fill in a suggestion card to point out any issues we had during our stay so she could tend to it. The couple are very European cosmopolitan and at the same time acutely aware of local sensibilities. They told me they have lived and traveled in Africa prior to owning this riad and had a good understanding of North African culture. They have done an excellent job of introducing first world trappings (internet, plumbing, sanitary conditions, A/C) without compromising the beauty of Moroccan living.

The staff are either well trained, or just have that hospitable sensibility I also see in Thailand. When we strolled back in after our morning walk, one staff was still cleaning our room. Although I asked her to not mind us, she immediately excused herself and waited out until we were out of our room. Not only did she dismissed herself, anther staff on that floor disappeared (5 rooms on 2nd floor) and went to the first floor to clean things out of sight from us. These sort of subtle maneuvers were seen everywhere and the riad gave us the distinct feeling of friendliness, coziness, privacy and intimacy combined.

The architecture is very romantically Moroccan, from the bed to the bathroom, from the tassels to the ceiling light. We enjoyed returning to our room, which was named "Turquoise", every day. One thing to note is that this is not a large scale hotel where everything is uniform, it's more an intimate guest house where every room has its own character.

Moroccan architecture does not call for much windows facing outside. I am not sure if this is because of the hot sun or because of the Islam way of living but our room faced out to the internal courtyard, which was well lit with natural sunlight. A bird flew in, which is not uncommon I was told, and amused us for a while but I did not see a single dropping anywhere in the riad. Another testament to how attentive the staff are to keep the place pristine.

The doors to rooms do not have keys and are open most of the time, with lace/sheer curtains concealing the interior of rooms. It didn't bother us that there were no keys. We felt as if we were at a friend's house, safe and the people there trustworthy. There was also a safety deposit box for our valuables.

One thing we didn't notice for a while was the lack of TV. We were too busy going about town and too tired when we got back so didn't notice there wasn't one until Massimo mentioned some current news. We brought our iPads with us so we kept up to date with the world through internet. For those with TV addicted children/adults may want to bring iPads loaded with videos.

The food was lovely too. We stayed over Christmas so were treated to a Christmas dinner, which was a Euro-Moroccan fare. We stayed a Friday as well when they serve Cous Cous every week. Everything tasted as though they were made from scratch, and we loved it so much we ate majority of the nights there instead of risking ho-hum food at what may be tourist traps. Having said so, most travelers tend to stay short term so the breakfast menu seemed to be on a 3-4 day rotation.

Location was superb as well, although the Medina is not easy to navigate. Massimo gave us pointers in what to look out for when reaching the riad and since Riad Le Clos Des Arts is close to the major tourist sights such as the palaces and tombs and museums, we probably walked less than most tourist staying in the Medina.

On our last day the bill came and it was exactly as advertised on their website. No hidden costs, not weird "service" or "tax" added on. Everything was transparent and the impression of their honest business carried through to the end.

There are more famous, high caliber, larger riads in Marrakesh, with probably similar ambiance. But what sets this place apart is the hands-on hospitality of the owners, which, I am guessing, does not exist at other places. Hence the high ratings. Marrakesh itself is a very exciting, energetic, maddening place that I would love to return to, and no matter what my friends recommend, I would come back to Riad Le Clos Des Arts in a heartbeat.

Room Tip: All rooms face the courtyard but you might get more sunlight on the 2nd floor.
See more room tips
  • Stayed December 2013, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Little Rock, Arkansas
2 reviews
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 2, 2014

I recently traveled to Marrakech for a business conference, but enjoyed a short personal stay at Riad le Clos des Arts prior to the conference. My stay there was truly the highlight of my trip to Marrakech. Georgina, Massimo, and their welcoming staff are the perfect hosts. The Riad is a beautifully and thoughtfully decorated jewel in a perfect location in the medina. Meals (delicious breakfast and traditional tagine dinner) were perfect, the best food I had in Marrakech. I strongly encourage all guests to enjoy the meals prepared at the Riad! I loved everything about Riad le Clos des Arts - perfect mini holiday!

  • Stayed January 2014, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Chichester, United Kingdom
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 31, 2014

Georgina, Massimo and Adriana made our stay at the Riad Le Clos des Arts amazing. Their welcome and their attention to detail sets them apart - from the advice of where to go and what to do, to the fragrant burning oils throughout the Riad to the beautiful roses to the beautifully decorated individual rooms - everything was done to a very high standard. Additionally, every meal we ate at the Riad was delicious - and we would all love to have your recipes Georgina! I will definitely return to this wonderful oasis, and cannot recommend it highly enough. What an experience. Thank you.

  • Stayed January 2014, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
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Melbourne, Australia
Top Contributor
127 reviews 127 reviews
66 hotel reviews
Reviews in 73 cities Reviews in 73 cities
99 helpful votes 99 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 26, 2014 via mobile

We stayed as guests of the lovely Georgina and Massimo at their delightful Riad for a total of 4 nights, broken by a side trip we did to Essaouira. Wow, this Riad is just lovely! It is neat as a pin with lovely touches everywhere, from daily rose petals in the courtyard fountain, to fragrant burning oils. It is a small place with I think only 7 rooms, but the 3 rooms we used were all lovely. The decoration of this Riad is a real credit to Georgina, creating a cosy, intimate feel that warms the welcome and stay in this place. The Riad is well located on the Bahia Palace side of the medina, and an easy 5 minute stroll to the centre of action. All aspects of the Riad work well - wifi, bedding, bathrooms, etc. we could not fault anything! That is hard to do! We loved the occasional mint teas, delightful breakfasts and ever welcoming staff as the door opened when we got back from somewhere. Service is impeccable in this place, we were assisted cheerfully with even the smallest request. Georgina and Massimo have assembled a great team, and we especially want to thank the very cool dude Yousef who served breakfast with an eternal smile ( as well as ushering us several times to waiting taxis) and Adriana who cheerfully chatted away. It is rare when you leave a hotel that you feel a connection to the place and the staff that makes it so hard to leave - but we did here. If you want a fantastic Riad in Marrakech, especially such an atmospheric and welcoming one then you must stay here - just fantastic. Ciao xxx

Stayed January 2014, traveled as a couple
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London, United Kingdom
2 reviews
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 13, 2014

This was my second time to spend my holidays at the Ryad. It was the Perfect decision, I have been welcomed by Giorgina and Massimo and it seemed to be part of their family. The staff was again so friendly and ready to help. The atmosphere was so warm and wonderful.
The icing on the cake was Christmas evening, not only did Giorgina and the chef surprised all of us with an exquisite dinner, but even we all received a gift from Massimo and Giorgina.
The menu was perfectly prepared in all its details, highlighting the textures of the best Moroccan cusine with a pinch of European touch ...and it was so delicious. The Moroccan soup and the lamb flavoured with honey, I never tried before such a good speciality. Thank you Massimo and Giorgina for all your lovely care, been at your Ryad make really the difference. It is always a special experience ,which I highly recommend.
Thanks again, Roberto.

  • Stayed December 2013, traveled solo
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 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 Riad le Clos des Arts

Address: Riad Zitoune Jdid, Derb Tbib 50 | Near Dar Si Said and Bahia Palace, Marrakech 40000, Morocco
Phone Number:
Location: Morocco > Marrakech-Tensift-El Haouz Region > Marrakech
Amenities:
Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#3 Family Hotel in Marrakech
#3 Romantic Hotel in Marrakech
#23 Business Hotel in Marrakech
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Number of rooms: 7
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
In a narrow street of the Medina of Marrakech come and discover Riad le Clos des Arts: a charming Arab house renovated in pure Moresque style. Be seduced by this fascinating oriental atmosphere, be tempted by the authenticity of traditional Moroccan flavours, be refreshed by a plunge into the small pool on the terrace.The riad offers 4 suites and 2 rooms, all with ensuite bathrooms and the possibility to have dinner on order. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Riad Le Clos Des Arts Hotel Marrakech

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