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“A good choice in Marrakech” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Riad Dar El Kheir

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Riad Dar El Kheir
4 Derb El Ferrane Bab Doukkala, Marrakech, Morocco   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #756 of 1,031 Marrakech B&B and Inns
New York City
1 review
“A good choice in Marrakech”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 25, 2008

Very clean and tastefully decorated. Convenient to the main square (Jemaa El Fna) as well as the shopping area of the souks. Also extremely convenient to catch a taxi or caleche to Gueliz (new part of city) and the Majorelle Gardens. It is actually walking distance to anywhere you'd want to go in Marrakech, but the farthest end of Gueliz would be a half hour walk.
The owner smokes and so do some of the guests. If cigarette smokes bothers you at all, however, I recommend finding a completely different country to visit because there is no escape from it anywhere in Morocco, and I mean 24/7. I stayed in 5 hotels in various cities on my trip and they all had bars or nightclubs in them so you can't even open the windows for fresh air, it's all full of constant cigarette smoke. Likewise the restaurants, trains, taxis, even taking a shower and sleeping in the hotel gives you no respite from the constant cigarette smoke.
Another point, if you're at all squeamish about non-hygienic circumstances, don't go to Morocco. The toilets are a hole in the ground, no indoor plumbing in many places so nowhere to wash your hands. Think about the fact that the people preparing your food in the restaurants can't wash their hands either and it might bother you.

  • Liked — Beautiful room and convenient location
  • Disliked — Cigarette smoking permitted (the owner smoked, too)
  • Stayed October 2008, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 3 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 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
France
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed March 6, 2007

The Dar El Kheir is a beautifully decorated, spotless, well-located riad in the Medina in Marrakech. We paid 150€ a night to stay in the 'heart room', which was very nice, but a little overpriced considering the amenities (dribbling shower pressure, uncomfortable mattress...) and the (non buffet) continental breakfast it came with.

The hotel's website (which is honest) shows a pool, but it must be about 2 metres squared and is in the lobby beween two couches. The terrace is gorgeous and sunny all day, with wrap around couches and sun chairs at guests' disposal. There is also a rooftop suite that opens directly onto the terrace.

*The hotel is beside a mosque, and at 4 am every morning, the muezzin (loudly) calls local residents to prayer. This is something to think about if noise is an issue for you, as it woke us up every morning.

The resident cook prepares excellent dinners, and all the staff are friendly, extremely professional and welcoming.

The hotel is run by French expats, who, if you ask them for advice, will steer you towards other (costly) French-run establishments. Try to book things yourself, as they more than likely take a commission on whatever excursions they propose. (They offered us a day trip in a 4x4 for 200€ and we found the exact same thing at Sahara Expéditions for 80€, including a meal.)

Depending on your views you might want to avoid discussing politics or local culture with your expat hosts - we were often uncomfortable with their comments about Moroccans and particularly the way they spoke to their staff, who despite working long hours for a monthly salary equivalent to two nights in the hotel, were always smiling and efficient.

The neighbourhood seems kind of sketchy when you first arrive but is totally safe- we came back to the hotel as late as 1 am and always felt at home in the neighbourhood.

We stayed at the Dar El Kheir because everything else was booked, and probably wouldn't stay again, for the reasons mentioned above. Tastes are different though, and this review is of course only meant as a guideline. Have a wonderful trip wherever you stay!

Stayed March 2007
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Additional Information about Riad Dar El Kheir

Address: 4 Derb El Ferrane Bab Doukkala, Marrakech, Morocco
Location: Morocco > Marrakech-Tensift-El Haouz Region > Marrakech
Amenities:
Restaurant
Hotel Style:
Ranked #756 of 1,031 B&Bs / Inns in Marrakech
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Entirely renovated in 2006 respecting the original architecture, Riad DAR EL KHEIR is traditional home, but with all the modern comforts, located in the romantic medina of Marrakech, at 5 minutes working from the famous place Djemaa el Fna , your guest can relax on our quiet terrace and enjoy the sun. Afterwards they may sample the fabulous Moroccan cuisine on the patio. The Riad is built around 2 flower-filled patios in the center with nice swimming pool, includes six rooms and nice terrace roof. ... more   less 
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