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“Lovely Marrakech stay” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Riad Shemsi

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Riad Shemsi
3.0 of 5 Bed and Breakfast   |   194 Derb Chtouka, Marrakech, Morocco   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #221 of 1,136 Marrakech B&B and Inns
Certificate of Excellence
Level Contributor
12 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“Lovely Marrakech stay”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 7, 2014 via mobile

We stayed at Riad Shemsi for 2 nights and really enjoyed our stay. It feels like you are staying on someone's home. The decor is beautiful, our room was on the ground floor- which we didn't mind, it had a small but adequate shower room and the rooms decor was traditionally Moroccan which was nice. There is a pool but we didn't use it- we did use the roof top terrace which provides a peaceful getaway from the busy streets. Being in the south of Marrakech it is close to some of the main tourist attractions and only a 15-20 minuite walk to the souks. I would recommend staying here if you like boutique B&Bs :)

  • Stayed April 2014
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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265 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (22)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
St Albans
Level Contributor
9 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 12, 2014

My husband and I with our 2 teenage daughters stayed here for 5 nights in the Berbere bedroom and the Orange bedroom which are next to each other.
We travelled in early April as we were expecting the temperature to be around 25C but summer came early which meant most days it was around 35C!! This made us extremely grateful for the pool (definitely a swimming pool NOT a plunge pool at 1.2m deep and roughly 20ft x 10ft) which we used a lot to cool off in.
The Riad is truly beautiful, only 6 rooms, very peaceful, each room traditionally but stylishly decorated with air conditioning, great showers, delicious Bains de Marrakech soap, shampoo, shower gel and body milk, a safe in each room and very firm matresses! Plenty of towels for the bathroom and by the pool and large towelling robes which we used by the pool as well. Most importantly for our 2 daughters, free Wifi throughout the Riad!
The roof terraces are both beautifully done with the tented area a great shady place to sit or plenty of smart loungers to lie in the sun, surrounded by potted plants and flowers.
We had pre booked a meal for the first night at the Riad as we knew we wouldn't be arriving till 8pm. I'm so glad we did as our flight was delayed and we didn't end up getting to the Riad till much later but it was no problem for the cook, who had waited for us and then proceeded to cook us a beautiful Morrocan meal - I would thoroughly recommend having a meal there.
Breakfast, which is served from 8.30 till 10.30am every day was delicious - freshly squeezed orange juice, homemade yoghurt, jams, breads and Berber pancakes and eggs cooked to order. I know one reviewer commented that there was no variety in the breakfast and whilst the above was on offer every day there was also sometimes dried fruits, sometimes fresh fruit then either croissants or pain au chocolate or homemade Maderia cake, I also had scrambled eggs which were beautifully cooked and spiced with cumin - with so much choice it would have been hard to be bored with the food! Oh and hot chocolate every day for my daughters.
Mohammed, who is there from about 5pm till about 10.30am each day is a quiet, gentle soul who is very helpful and will book or sort out anything for you - I was a bit of a pain - booking treatments and taxis and then cancelling them when our plans changed but he never batted an eyelid or made me feel I was being difficult!
The ladies who run, cook and clean the Riad during the day are charming - very little English,but if you don't speak French you can make yourself understood. The Riad is spotless and even though my daughters were a quite messy in their bedroom the maid tidied and cleaned their room every day always with a big smile. As other reviewers have mentioned it is incredibly quiet at Riad Shemsi as it is tucked away down a back alley at the bottom of the mainly residential area of the Kasbah, this means there are very few tourists around, however it is still only a 20 minute stroll to the main square (Jemaa el Fna).
This meant that on several occasions we felt very comfortable leaving our young teenage daughters there sunbathing and swimming for couple of hours whilst we visited some sights they weren't interested in.
Having visited the much busier, noisier far more touristy North Medina I was so glad we weren't staying there.
I don't think Riad Shemsi would be suitable for large, noisy groups unless taking over the whole Riad.
Mint tea, coffee, juice and water are provided free of charge and we would often have coffee on the roof terrace when we returned at night which was lovely. I honestly can't fault Riad Shemsi, it offered far more than I was expecting for the price and I think its only fault is underselling itself - I didn't realise until I got there that I could have had a cookery course there, massage treatments there and many trips can be booked from there including guides round the city! Would definitely return. I just hope all these comments get passed on to the staff?

Room Tip: Orange Room is a good size with large walk in shower. Berber Room is on the smaller size with a sma...
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  • Stayed April 2014, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 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.
Los Angeles, Ca.
Level Contributor
44 reviews
22 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 60 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed March 25, 2014

The entry way and (small/very cold) plunge pool are beautiful. To lounge there after the noisy market (medina) area you need to pass through every time you come and go anywhere is a real pleasure. The suite is on the third floor (no elevator) and feels like you have the entire roof area to yourselves as the terrace is there too. (Maybe noisy if guests are partying in Summer?) The owner was not there apparently having a baby and the relief staff were nice enough but dropped the ball by having breakfast ready AFTER we were scheduled to be picked up by our city tour guide. No breakfast, big tour, not good ! Mohammed (nice guy) the night man forgot it was Sunday (stores open later apparently). He also locked himself out for an hour until I happened by. There was no food service offered and that's not a bad thing as the Les Jardins de la Medina riad is steps away and has a great restaurant, atmosphere, full staff and they change money for guests---at the official rate.

Room Tip: Chocolate suite big and has an extra single bed. A safe too.
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  • Stayed March 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 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.
Chichester
Level Contributor
20 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 8, 2014

After deciding to take a break before the madness of Christmas, we settled on Marrakech as our destination. A friend recommended Riad Shemsi so we checked it out on line and booked it up 18th - 23rd December.

We were picked up from the airport and as we drove to the Riad, I did have to question had we made the right decision, which was reinforced when the driver stopped in a busy, seemingly run down part of town, without speaking, got out of the car, dragged our bags out and headed of into the maddening crowed! Keeping up with him as he ducked down ever narrowing allies I did start to worry. After a few minutes we came to a dead end with just a big door in front of us.......All my fears were allayed once we entered, Riad Shemsi was a beautiful, peaceful haven far from the chaos we had encountered outside.

We were greeted by Noura and served mint tea with nibbles by the pool then left to relax and take in the calm before she came back to provided a map,several recommendations for places to visit and take us to our room.

The room was a little on the small side but perfectly adequate, although we did have a few issues with the heating not working and the electrics playing up but that didn't detract from our enjoyment, and the staff were very helpful in resolving the issues without delay.

We could not have been better located, once we learnt our way around we found we could walk to the Square, Souks and New town, also it is in a quieter part of the Medina, which you will appreciate as Marrakech gives new meaning to the words "hectic" and "chaotic", but don't be put off by this you really do learn to embrace the madness and roll with it.

The thing about Marrakech is that you never know what is behind the rundown facades and trust me you will always be surprised by the opulence it hides. It was a great place to visit full of sights and smells (not all good!) and never a dull moment. Alcohol is pretty much banned in the old city although there are a few hotels that serve drinks but you will pay a hefty price for the privilege - around 140 dirhams for a bottle (same wine costs about 8 dirhams at the airport) , in fact one place we went into charged 130 dirhams a glass.....yes a glass! and the Riad does not have a bar. Needless to say it was a very health holiday lots of walking and little alcohol, and one we truly enjoyed.

  • Stayed December 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 4, 2013

We stayed at Riad Shemsi for three nights, 30 November to 3 December 2013.

The riad is beautifully presented and spotlessly clean but it is the lovely service that takes it to the next level. Noura and Mohammed and so friendly and make you feel so welcome during your stay. They are there if you need them, nothing being too much trouble, or you are left to relax and enjoy the peace if that is what you want.

The riad is an oasis of calm in hectic Marrakech and it is great to return to of an evening after the day wandering around. Noura provided a map on arrival and we stumbled across a number or recommendations in our wanderings; all of them great.

Highly recommended and would definitely return. Helped make the holiday in Marrakech a wonderful experience.

Room Tip: We stayed in the Orange Room as a twin and it worked great for friends travelling together who wante...
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  • Stayed December 2013, 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 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Glasgow, United Kingdom
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 2, 2013

My future wife and I spent 3 days in march 2013 and loved everything about this place. We walked to the shops, restaurants and attractions everyday. The staff were fantastic. Mohamed was the kindest guy you could meet. Will defo go back. 10/10. Paul and pauline

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 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.
Bergen
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 8, 2013

My girlfriend and I stayed at Shemsi from the 2nd to 6th of July, in the middle of Moroccan summer (hot with a capital H). We were expecting alot from this place due to all the good reviews by previous patrons, and we were thoroughly suprised. Riad Shemsi is a true oasis in the Medina, and far exceeded our expectations! The staff are very attentive, uninstrusive and could offer genuine advice on places to eat and see. We stayed in the Chocolate Suite which is by any standards a lovely room, and the rest of the Riad is equally immaculate and well appointed. The swimming pool was greatly appreciated, and although not olympic in size, it is a genuine pool and not a converted fountain.

On arrival the AC was faulty, and after 15 minutes a repairman showed up. I assume he could not fix it as he was given a (descrete, but audiable) ear ache from the woman in charge, and shortly afterwards another man showed up and to fixed the fault after a good hours work. I am familiar with ear ache regardless of culture or language...

The location is perfect as it is easy to find after a walk round the Souks, and also because it is in a quieter (and cleaner) part of the Medina - which you will really appreciate as Marrakech gives new meaning to the words "hectic" and "chaotic".

The food and drink offered are of good quality at a fair price. Water, english tea, mint tea and juice were offered FOC (all day and night) as well as light breakfast (served upon request) consisting of maroccan pancakes, baguette, jam and natural yoghurt with a choice of tea or coffee. My only comment would be that the seasoning is suited to european taste, which will suit most, but probably not foodies.

Finally, I must add that I am a rather spoilt traveller, who usually stays at rediculosly over priced resorts and hotels - and I'm usually rather dissapointed. Riad Shemsi is by any standards, world class. We will definately return again soon.

Room Tip: Choclate suite
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  • Stayed July 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 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 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Riad Shemsi

Address: 194 Derb Chtouka, Marrakech, Morocco
Location: Morocco > Marrakech-Tensift-El Haouz Region > Marrakech
Amenities:
Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #221 of 1,136 B&Bs / Inns in Marrakech
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:3 star — Riad Shemsi 3*
Number of rooms: 6
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Riad Shemsi is a beautiful and elegant Riad in the heart of the Marrakech Medina. Situated in the Royal Kasbah, it is in easy walking distance of all the principal sites including the main square and the myriad souks. All the suites are delightfully presented in traditional Moroccan plasterwork and Marrekchi furnishings. The views from its elevated terrace are stunning. The celebrated Shemsi cuisine is sourced locally everyday from the freshest ingredients. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Riad Shemsi Hotel Marrakech

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