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“Brilliant team of staff” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Riad Dollar Des Sables

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Riad Dollar Des Sables
13 Derb Deffa Ourbaa | Laksour Smarinne, Marrakech 40000, Morocco   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #185 of 461 hotels in Marrakech
London, United Kingdom
Contributor
19 reviews 19 reviews
17 hotel reviews
Reviews in 17 cities Reviews in 17 cities
20 helpful votes 20 helpful votes
“Brilliant team of staff”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 24, 2013

This very well located Riad certainly ticked all the right boxes for me. I came here in late October with two friends and enjoyed every minute of it! I recommend booking the airport transfer as it would be very difficult to find yourself for the first time although having said that once you have got your bearings it is less than ten minutes from the main square and literally on the doorstep of the souks.
Please do not be put off by your initial impressions when you arrive, you have to walk down a couple of alley ways and you might well wonder where you are being lead to but as soon as you get in the door you have found a lovely oaisi of calm and friendliness in the heart of Marrakech.
The Riad is based around a small central courtyard with a lovely rooftop area with over-sized cushions upon which you can relax. Breakfast each day is served in teh courtyard area and it was always fresh and cooked to order. The homemade natural yoghurt, jams and Moroccan pancakes are divine and we looked forward to our leisurely breakfast each morning.
It is however the staff who give this place the 5 star rating in my opinion. Run by a French lady she has a team of four local Moroccan staff all of whom went out of their way to be helpful, charming and very informative about what to see and do in Marrakech. You are met from your taxi in the main square and personally escorted to the Riad. One night we wanted to go to a restaurant to the night receptionist walked us there himself then came back when we were ready to walk home. On another occasion we wanted to find a nearby cafe so again we were personally escorted by the man who is on duty in the day. Yes of course we tipped them but you found that this was all done much more in a genuine desire to make their guests feel safe and welcome rather than the desire to extract a few more tourist dlrhams from us! The same goes for the two ladies who worked there, the cook an dthe housekeeper, charming, unassuming and friendly,. I really felt part of a "family" the five nights I spent here and I have absolutely no hesitation in recommending this Riad to anyone looking for a traditional Moroccan experience in the heart of Marrakech.

  • Stayed October 2013, traveled with friends
    • 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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95 people have reviewed this hotel

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    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
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (2)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Louisville, Kentucky
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 24, 2013

My wife and I spent a wonderful weekend at the Riad Dollar Des Sables and wouldn't think twice about staying there again. The hotel is located off of one of the main souks and a short walk to the main square. Because the hotel is located in the center of the medina, it makes for a great place to take a break from the hectic city and hot sun. We cannot say enough good things about the wonderful staff at the riad. The Marrakech medina is VERY difficult to navigate and maps are pretty much worthless, however, anyone on the staff would gladly walk with us a little ways to point us in the right direction. The room we stayed in was very clean and the breakfast was great every morning.

  • Stayed April 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 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Wauseon, Ohio
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 22, 2013

Our time in Marrakech was a wonderful experience for our family. The Riad Dollar Des Sables only enhanced our time in Morocco. We loved the staff, the ambience, and the day trips - that the riad also assisted in organizing for our group of nine. One day we went to the Atlas mountains - beautiful experience. Another day we travel to the Atlantic sea shore - our 2 little travelers really enjoyed this. Our time in the city was also a safe, memorable experience. We especially enjoyed the evening meals that we special ordered from the riad's menu - delicious! It was a relaxing, memorable time for our family that had come together from different parts of the US and Europe.

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Malaga, Spain
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed February 1, 2013

Four of us stayed for 5 nights at Riad Dollar des Sables. The situation off the Place Jemaa el Fna, through the souk and down some rabbit warren alleyways was quite excitng. However an easy to interpret plan larger than a business card would have been useful.
The Riad courtyard was charming and the slighty scruffy roof terrace was a pleasant place to catch some winter sunshine but our room was dingy and cheerless with no attempt at style or character. Our friends had the 'suite', a misnomer. A request for a second bedside lamp was studiously ignored. We would return to find mobile, laptop and electric toothbrushes which had been left on charge had been disconnected. We are sure it wasn't the fault of the maid but probably an economic order from above.
The poor quality bedlinen would have been shameful for the cheapest of hostals. Waking the first morning after an uncomfortable night with a stiff neck from sleeping on a 'pillow' which even a stone saint recumbant on a tomb would have found testing, my request for another pillow was greeted with derision by the owner and I was informed that they did not have spare pillows but it could have more stuffing....?
The advertised strong WiFi signal was very erratic and only accessible in the downstairs public areas and not in the rooms.
The staff were friendly and helpful. Faoud came to rescue us one night when we were totally lost, with a smile and no problem. Mouna the charming cook produced a good dinner but it was more expensive for similar around the square. We were charged for water as if it was wine! Compared to other lower priced places, the breakfast was rather meagre.
We just felt that there was an tense atmosphere between the owner and the staff.
Having experienced other vastly superior Riads in Morocco but in the same price bracket, may we suggest to Cathy that she either dramatically improves her presentation or adjusts her prices to reflect the Raid's standard.

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with friends
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
CathMarrakechmedina, Propriétaire at Riad Dollar Des Sables, responded to this review, February 4, 2013
I'm very surprised and a bit disappointed to read this review...I'm very surprised as these 2 couples staid at the Riad, at the same time as a group of 8 american guests, coming for a whole week! As you can see ,according to their review ,this group of eight people, of all generations appreciated their stay ,my house and what we provided, airport pick up, meals and daytours.

The Riad was fully booked with guests coming from different countries and they all enjoyed this new experience of staying in a traditional house.

It is very strange that Mrs Caroline doesn't mention anything good thing we provide...how can it be said that our moroccan breakfast is not good, I cannot let say it, as we try to provide our best , changing the breakfast every day ,with fresh orange fruit juice , different seasonal fruit, changing the home made marmelade, making our home made yogourt, and providing bread, home made crepes , moroccan pan cakes and cakes...
I can guess that this lady ignores that it is not so frequent in most of the Riads in Marrakesh!
I can guess also that this lady has probably the habit of staying in standard hotels...We , my team and I, are like a small family, my guest house is appreciated by a majority of our guests, and I can assure that we always provide our best , trying to please our guests, and looking for improvement...Is this lady really concerned by environement?? She doesn't mention that everyday ,my team and I, had to switch off the light, switch off the heat after she had left her room for the whole day...Of course, we do pay attention not to waste electricity and water use, I think we have to! Sorry madam Caroline, that you didn't understand this, that you didn't appreciate your stay, ....my house is an official 2nd category guest house, known by the authorities, with 4 people full time working and paid with a decent salary , for a total of 13 guests when the Riad is fully booked;
The price we ask is adapted to our category, equivalent to other Riads in the same area, the same level of services.
You should have a look to the Riads of 1st category, and have a look to the services they provide and the price they ask, much more than 79 euros for 2 guests!
I mention that we provide a mineral water free and moroccan cookies to each of guests arriving at the Riad, wifi not perfect upstairs because of the thick old walls of the house, but satisfying in the courtyard and FREE for our guests..
I'm aware that we haven't reach perfection ,but I assure that I always try to do my best with my team, and try to improve our services..
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london
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 18, 2013

Everything you read about this Riad being prefect is true. The staff could not have been more helpful, The Riad was wonderfully peacefull and yet less than a minute from the markets and a few minutes from the main square, The breakfast was served in a lovely airy room and we had a meal in the evening which was simply fantastic. I would not hesitate for a moment to recommend this place when visiting Marrakech.

  • Stayed January 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 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
CathMarrakechmedina, Propriétaire at Riad Dollar Des Sables, responded to this review, February 4, 2013
Hello from a sunny day in Marrakech!
Just wanted to thank you for the nice review you took time to leave here. I will tell my team !
I hope to welcome you another time, and help you to discover more of Marrakech's surroundings...

Kind regards,
Cathy
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Ballycastle, United Kingdom
1 review
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 30, 2012

Cathy (the owner) and her staff were incredibly helpful and wonderful. We didn't even need a guidebook because they had amazing advice for us daily! Cathy was also able to offer us two day excursions out of the city, which were just a portion of the extras they can provide. My sister-in-law and I both had the traditional hamman done at the riad, and a massage - both arranged by the staff at the riad. The breakfasts were EXQUISITE and the dinners we had at the riad made by Mouna were amazing. I wouldn't hesitate to recommend this Riad to my family and friends. We even took our three young boys (all under 4) and were nervous about how they would be received. The staff spoiled them and treated them so well. They loved the food and everyone was incredibly helpful. One word of warning - like most riads, noises do echo in the building, and if you have loud boisterous children that don't have indoor voices, it could be stressful for you as the parents. (speaking from experience) :) Overall it was an AMAZING week, and so much more than I expected - all because of our excellent experience in this quiet, beautiful space in the middle of the bustling souks.

  • Stayed December 2012, 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 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
CathMarrakechmedina, Propriétaire at Riad Dollar Des Sables, responded to this review, February 4, 2013
Dear Tiffany and family,
Just a few words to thank you warmly for the very kind review you wrote..I will transmit to my team, I promise!
Say Hello to your family and kiss the children for us!

Cheers,
Cathy
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
2 reviews
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 21, 2012

Lovely place to stay! The staff is fantastic, welcoming and helpful. The cook is splendid - the dinner we had was very tasty and the breakfast each morning just out of this world. The riad itself had a great and peaceful atmosphere to relax after a tiring day of hussle and bustle, with a great décor... we had the most romantic time.
Location wise is great, super close to the square and at the doorstep of the souks, but no so deep into the souks that would make it a nightmare to find.
Will definetely recommend!

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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Additional Information about Riad Dollar Des Sables

Address: 13 Derb Deffa Ourbaa | Laksour Smarinne, Marrakech 40000, Morocco
Location: Morocco > Marrakech-Tensift-El Haouz Region > Marrakech
Amenities:
Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #185 of 461 hotels in Marrakech
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Riad Dollar des Sables is a nice traditional guest house of 6 rooms ( 3 doubles, 2 twins and a very romantic Suite for two and can be transformed into a triple with an extra charge ). The ideal location inside the Medina allows you to explore the city easily. The Riad is located at the entrance of the main Souk,called "Smarinnne" and the famous Square "Jema el Fna" only at a 2 minutes walk. Upon arrival, we recommend you to book our airport pick up, especially by night , to avoid the fake guides; we can also meet you at the Square , or pick you up at the airport, for an extra charge (220 Dhirams :2 guests or 150 Dhirams for 1 guest) so don't hesitate to contact me , giving me your flight details so that I can arrange this service with my private driver.Our driver will drop you at jema el fna Square within 10 minutes, and we will be there to meet you. As soon as you get inside the House , you will be touched by the enchanting atmosphere of Riad Dollar des Sables. The whole staff is welcoming you with a smile, and a special attention : coloured candles, fresh roses petals at your feet, delicate flavor in the air and oriental music..just to make you feel in the mood and comfortable.Passing through the corridor, you will discover the peaceful courtyard and its fountain made of traditional mosaics.On its terrace, Riad Dollar des Sables offers a relaxing and traditional Hammam ( run with wood) and massages for a very good price;First, you will be invited to share with me (Cathy) a sweet refreshing mint tea and moroccan pastries.As I'm living all year long in Marrakesh since 2006, I know quite well the city and shall be happy to share with you my experience , giving you all the useful information and good adresses to enjoy your stay .We shall give you a map to sign the main monuments to visit or restaurants around. We can also provide moroccan meals at the Riad and cooking class with my cook Mouna; ... more   less 
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