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“Little haven in Essouira” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Riad Alech

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Riad Alech
61 rue Ceuta, Essaouira 44000, Morocco   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #37 of 76 Hotels in Essaouira
Belfast, United Kingdom
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
“Little haven in Essouira”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 23, 2013 via mobile

this riad was genuinely one of the loveliest places we stayed in Morocco. all the staff were incredibly welcoming with the manager being so warm and helpful. our room was stunning with a separate bathroom which literally had the biggest bath I've ever seen!!!! the roof terrace is spacious and just the break you need from the busy streets.
its located in a quite hard to reach part of the town (a maze!) so i would suggest paying one of the people with the wheel barrows to direct you.

  • Stayed March 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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67 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    40
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5
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 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 (3)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
San Francisco
Senior Contributor
26 reviews 26 reviews
17 hotel reviews
Reviews in 20 cities Reviews in 20 cities
41 helpful votes 41 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 21, 2012

Riad Alech was an absolutely wonderful experience. We were only going to stay two nights in Essaouira but ended up staying four because this place was so great. The owners are super friendly and patient and they helped us with all our questions and showed us all the best hole-in-the-wall places to eat in town that the locals visit. They were also super accommodating and helpful with all the other questions they had. It's a French couple that moved away from France a few years ago - their English is really good and I had no problems getting any information.

One of the best things about this place, hands down, is the friendly and thoughtful staff.

The night watchman, Abdellah, is a thoughtful and hospitable person. He would go through this elaborate ritual every evening where he would make us Moroccan mint tea and try to explain to us in French how the tea is made. Very endearing. Thanks to this evening ritual, we're now going to get a Moroccan tea set for when we go back home to try and repeat the experience at home. He was also remarkable about anticipating our needs despite not speaking our language and responding accordingly.

The lady that works there during the day, Khadija, is also very nice. She was also great at anticipating our needs and was happy to serve us breakfast on the terrace every morning despite repeated trips up the stairs.

Overall, this was a great experience, and I'm really glad we came here. We're definitely going to visit again someday. Hopefully the owners, Abdellah and Khadija are still here.

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 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
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San Francisco, CA
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 27, 2012

Very friendly hosts and staff, great breakfast, pleasantly decorated rooms - this is a reasonable and lovely place to stay in the medina. The hosts were extremely informative and helped us book our stay in the next town that we were visiting. We stayed in the suite on the second floor, bathroom in the room and a small sitting room. Staff were friendly and the riad was in a convenient location.

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 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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Victoria, Canada
Top Contributor
104 reviews 104 reviews
43 hotel reviews
Reviews in 44 cities Reviews in 44 cities
192 helpful votes 192 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 31, 2010

We arrived in Essaouira, after a three hour bus ride from Marrakech, and were met by a young boy with a wheelbarrow who transported our bags to the Riad. We paid him the equivalent of $5 US, which was probably more than usual by his reaction, but thank goodness he knew where he was going because it is not an easy find. Long narrow ally ways all seem to blend together, but by the end of the third day we (sort of) had them figured out. Morocco definitely is a different world, but an experience that we will both cherish.
My husband and I stayed for three nights at the Riad Alech in the Yellow Room. Immediately upon arrival the beauty of the decor and the tranquility of the place is evident. Our hostess was so gentle mannered and gracious. We were served hot mint tea, given maps of the area, and given recommendations and directions to local restaurants. Our hostess spoke broken English, however she did much better than we did with our French, and we managed to understand each other quite well.
Breakfast very morning was served on the terrace and was delicious. We were the only ones at the Riad the entire time and felt very spoiled. It was peaceful and relaxing. Not sure how it would have been if the place had been full of other patrons. The first night was a little nerve racking trying to find our way back to the Riad after dark, but once we figured where we were going we felt at ease.
Essaouira is over-kill to the senses. People (very young to very old), bikes, carts, scooters, donkeys, cats (lots of cats), and dogs, fill the streets and allys. Shops of all kinds are everywhere in the Medina. If you see something you like buy it because you will probably not be able to find the place again! Bartering for items is draining. Just be careful and don't pay more than you think something is worth. Once you pay the price, don't try and see if you could have got it cheaper somewhere else, because you probably could have and then you will be depressed (take it from me!). But it is all part of the culture, so have fun with it.
The beaches are big and beautiful. We found a great beach club "Beach & Friends" which had free Wifi and delicious food. You could use the beach chairs and umbrellas if you ordered something. Prices were very reasonable and they made wonderful pitchers of sangria! My husband planned to go kiteboarding one day, but at first there was not enough wind and then it was too windy, so unfortunately no kiteboarding for him.
We had a wonderful time in Essaouira. Recommend staying in a Riad in the Medina for at least a night or two just for the thrill of the experience.

  • Stayed September 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 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 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York City, New York
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 21, 2010

We had a lovely stay at the Riad Alech, which is truly special and gorgeous inside - decorated with a personal touch by someone with exquisite taste. It is down a side street and so off the main drag, which is fine during the day but caused us a bit of nervousness at night (2 women traveling together), also that you have to ring the bell and wait for someone to let you in and so you are waiting outside in the dark for someone to come. However, this is not atypical in Morocco. A bit of a challenge as the staff did not really speak English and we do not speak any French but again, we had that challenge all over Morocco. The staff was lovely and we would not hesitate to recommend our stay, just keep in mind the location if you are a nervous nellie.

  • Stayed June 2010, traveled with friends
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 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
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canada
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 18, 2010

My husband and I stayed at Alech for 2 nights. We stayed in the suite. It was comfortable but having the bathroom outside of the room was inconvenient and awkward. The riad is tastefully decorated and they play excellent music! We had breakfast each morning on the terrace and it was great. The staff were very friendly. The only negative thing was we speak english and they speak french so communication was a huge issue. It was hard to make contact with the Riad when we were trying to book. The person we spoke with did speak english and asked us to email her our arrival time so she could arrange transportation. Which we did. However, we never got a reponse from her and therefore had to find our own way to the riad. Overall it was a nice place but we would look for another riad next time.

  • Stayed May 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 3 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
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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Nottingham
Senior Contributor
39 reviews 39 reviews
34 hotel reviews
Reviews in 29 cities Reviews in 29 cities
27 helpful votes 27 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 30, 2010

Title says it all really. The riad is very small, with only 5 rooms. It's beautifully restored and the hosts are a charming couple and very helpful. Maybe you could find it lacking in privacy as the rooms are quite close together and at night noise carries very easily, but there was nobody else staying when we were there so I can't really judge. Breakfast was simple but good and they were very flexible about timing. We enjoyed our stay here more than some of the pricier places that we stayed in in Morocco.

  • Stayed March 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 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
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Riad Alech

Address: 61 rue Ceuta, Essaouira 44000, Morocco
Location: Morocco > Marrakech-Tensift-El Haouz Region > Essaouira
Amenities:
Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Suites
Hotel Style:
#4 Best Value Hotel in Essaouira
#19 On the Beach Hotel in Essaouira
#21 Romantic Hotel in Essaouira
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Number of rooms: 5
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Riad Alech Essaouira
Riad Alech Hotel Essaouira

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