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“Escape to Essaouira” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Dar Lazuli

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Dar Lazuli
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Ranked #23 of 158 Essaouira B&B and Inns
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
“Escape to Essaouira”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 30, 2012 via mobile

This was my first visit to Essaouira and I found Dar Lazuli a really warm and friendly place to stay. Everyone there was extremely obliging, the rooms are full of character but are also very comfortable and having the chance to prepare your own food from the daily markets adds to the experience.
The location is central, very close to the main square and beach but once you are inside the walls it is really quiet( except for the bell chiming and call to prayer but this is morocco and those elements contribute to its magic)
I will definitely go back as I like the combination of having my own small apartment( I stayed in the smallest called ghibli) with the personalized care of a boutique hotel.

Odile, London

  • Stayed November 2012
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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130 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    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 (18)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
The Hague, The Netherlands
Contributor
17 reviews 17 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 7, 2012

We stayed at Dar Lazuli for 7 nights in October.

It was the second part of our honeymoon in Morocco, after an action-packed 1st week of trekking, Marrakech, walking in Ouzoud and so on….

We were ready for a rest and a bit of calm and I can safely say – we could not have made a better choice than Dar Lazuli.

So often, you turn up in a place you’ve been bursting with excitement to see, with high expectations and it falls short somehow. Often in the small details or the care taken by the owner / manager. That kind of thing can really rattle and take the edge of your enjoyment.

This WAS NOT the case in Dar Lazuli.

I do not know where to begin with the praise!

Firstly, Rachel (the owner) knew it was our honeymoon and had asked Latifa and Rachid to organise a bottle of wine to be in the apartment when we arrived. Which we thought was a lovely gesture.

Secondly, the apartments are really beautiful and excellent value for money.

They have been restored with so much care to an impossibly gorgeous state! I started to dread leaving before we’d even unpacked!!

It’s a fabulous combination of Moroccan colours and style, with tasteful and quirky, arty notes and modern comforts (docking station for your ipod (not that we had one, but….), large fridge, excellent shower etc etc

We started our stay in Ghibli – it’s really adorable, beautifully designed with access right out on to one of the three roof terraces.

It is a smaller than the other apartments (this is made abundantly clear on the website!), and as we were staying for 7 nights, the rest of the apartments were free and my husband at 6ft 3 filled a lot of the space on his own! – we asked Latifa if we could move to Calimar.

Of course, it was “no problem” (we were lucky enough to have the place to ourselves) and Latifa kindly helped us switch on the 2nd day.

We loved this apartment – the romantic, curtained mezzanine level with the bed, the huge bathroom, beautiful, colourful tiled kitchen and cosy, snug, lounge area around the fire place – it’s just wonderful.

Latifa and Rachid were there every day – Rachid regularly put fresh flowers in our apartment, Latifa cleaned and tidied really thoroughly. They answered questions we had, gave us tips and helped with anything we needed.

The night guardian was also as regular as clockwork, ensuring that everything felt safe and secure.

They are a wonderful team – Rachel, obviously has a great relationship with them and the trust and respect on both sides is clear.

Essaouira is a fantastic place. The medina (where Dar Lazuli is located) is lively and stimulating – it would be misleading to give the impression that it is peaceful  – the call to prayer is regular and the minaret is close-by. Dar Lazuli is surrounded by family homes, so you really feel that you are in the thick of Moroccan life. I guess one of the luxury hotels facing the beach would be quieter, but there is no way I’d swap! 

There are some brilliant places to eat and lots of choice. For us, Caravan Café was the pick of the bunch – great, generous food, with a really fun, lively, colourful atmosphere – lots of activity and laughter. The vegetarian place Triskala came a close second for high quality food and excellent value for money.  Patisserie Moulay Driss was another haunt of ours during the day – which we loved. The terrace at Taros is lovely for a sun-downer, but the food wasn’t as good as we’d expected and Chez Sam….. well – the less said about that experience, the better I think!!

The chic hotel Villa Maroc is your neighbour at Dar Lazuli and they kind of adopted us – looking after our bags when we arrived early and chatting to us every time we passed. We joined their trip to their pool and gardens just outside the town. It was such a great day out that we went twice!!

It is staggering beautiful there, the pool is gorgeous and we had a peek at the rooms – WOW!

On both trips we were treated to the most fantastic lunches: plates and plates of delicious fresh and cooked vegetables, BBQ chicken, delicious desserts. A full day at the pool, with towels and sun-hats provided, return transfer by 4x4 and the unforgettable lunch, all for about 20 Euros a head – really good value if you ask me!

We also had dinner at the Villa Maroc one evening (we made it officially our “wedding dinner” – we married in secret & boarded the flight to Morocco a few hours after the ceremony), it’s a special occasion kind of place – and it was a lovely evening. Food was great and only a few short steps home!!

Shopping in Essaouira is a fun and rewarding experience. We’d not even considered attempting it in Marrakech – far too crazy! And as we relaxed in to life in Essaouira we found everything a lot more welcoming and fun. We have never shopped on a holiday – neither of us enjoy it much in “real life” but in Essaouira even my husband found himself bartering and enjoying carting home the beautiful things we left with!

To sum up (I’m rather enjoying reminiscing!) Dar Lazuli and Essaouria are gems.

In Dar Lazuli, you have the comfort of a high quality hotel, but tonnes more space and total freedom.

Essaouira has lots to see and do (we would have happily stayed longer!) but is a relaxing and relaxed environment.

Rachel makes sure that you are well prepared, the comms were excellent during the run up to our holiday.

Rachid, Latifa and the night-guardian work really hard and do an excellent job. It helps that they are such nice people, who obviously take pride in their work. There is nothing slap-dash, no corners are cut and the results speak for themselves.

I would recommend Dar Lazuli & Essaouira wholeheartedly and I really hope we’ll go back some day and explore a little more.

Thank you all,

Jane & Mark

 

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 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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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 23, 2012

Some friends and I took 3 of the 4 apartments at Dar Lazuli. We were given a wonderfully warm welcome and had the most relaxing, carefree and comfortable stay we could have hoped for. The location is second to none - moments from the medina, souks and restaurants, and only a short walk to the beach. Don't be put off by "cat alley" on the approach. Once you're through the door, the whole riad is beautifully decorated, clean and quiet. Most Moroccan homes have a humble entrance, we learned - it avoids envy.

The rooms are great - each has its own distinct style - and each floor has a terrace. There's enough space that we never got in the way of the couple staying in Ghibli (I hope), and they certainly never got in ours. There's even a newly added roof terrace / sun trap with a sea view.

The owners are British and have gone to great pains to make travellers feel at home from home. From Egyptian cotton bed sheets to mini pots of Marmite in the very well-equipped kitchens, they've really thought of everything. The website is great too - really detailed local information and recommended excursions. The icing on the cake is the host couple: the incredibly discreet Latifa and the ever-smiling Rachid who keep the place clean, and are always available and happy to help or advise.

Aside from the calls to prayer you get everywhere in Morocco, we all enjoyed some of the best, undisturbed sleep we'd ever had in huge, hotel-style beds.

If you're looking for a reasonably priced, colourfully decorated home from home where you can self-cater or stumble 2 minutes to a tagine, I can't recommend Dar Lazuli highly enough.

  • Stayed September 2012, 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
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 23, 2012

After the hustle and bustle of Marrakech, we spent 4 nights in Dar Lazuli, and it was amazing. It was a home away from home, with all the comforts you could want, from decent pillows, massive bed, to ipod docs, and a kitchen with everything you might need. Rachid and Latifa were wonderful, helping with suggestions of where to go - Les Jardins de la Villa Maroc was a great tip, and a perfect way to spend our last day in Essaouira soaking up the sun by a gorgeous pool. Latifa did a great job in tidying up after me (!), and the apartment was spotless. We spent most evenings enjoying the sunset from the roof terrace with a gin in hand - doesn't get much better than that! The approach to Dar Lazuli is a bit dark, it's down a short passageway, but it's in a great, central location and there's absolutely no need to feel intimidated, and if you ever did, there's a night guardian on duty, who was really friendly. I'd also recommend visiting Taros - great bar with live music, and wonderful sunset views. All in all a fabulous holiday!

  • Stayed September 2012, 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
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 14, 2012 via mobile

We stayed here for 4 nights after 3 nights in Marrakech which seems to be quite a popular choice after the hussle (and hassle).

As soon as we arrived we were welcomed in by latifa who showed us everything we needed to know about the place. The place was very clean and was cleaned every day we stayed there. Would definately recommend Dar Lazuli - there are probably more luxurious riads in essaouira but for the price I think this place is spot on.

  • Stayed August 2012
    • 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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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 12, 2012

From Dar Lazuli’s roof top terrace we watched the sunrise, leaving the apartment we were just moments from the beach and just around the corner from the souks and the market; selling perfume, Berber jewellery and breakfast! We would return home in the evening to our guardian who opened the door for us, a clean and beautifully made out living space to relax in and a terrace to watch the sunset. So, whilst being fully immersed in the Moroccan way of life we were nurtured back to good health by our environment and Dar Lazuli’s good company. Thank you to our guardian who gave us our peace of mind, Latifa who made us feel very welcome and at home and to Rachid for his guidance.

Room Tip: Talk to the owners because they are really genuine and friendly
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  • Stayed September 2012, 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
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, England, United Kingdom
2 reviews
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 12, 2012

Arriving in Dar Lazuli in Essaouria after spending 2 days in Marrakesh was a real soul soother. Dar Lazuli offered an amazing home for our little holiday in Morocco. Beautiful rooms, kitchen with everything you need and a shower where you want to pop in 3 times a day. It is a place which made me feel very special and made me forget about everything the outside world. Really amazing views from the top terrace to enjoy a glass of wine or a breakfast. Dar Lazuli is a treat, and the staff looking after us were always helpful, very kind and wonderful people, just wish i could speak french to be able to talk to them more. The location is perfect, in the medina, close to the beach, and all the shops. This is a place where i would like to return and maybe take someone special with me. Essaouria is a perfect holiday destination to refresh the mind, senses and the soul.

  • Stayed September 2012, 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
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Dar Lazuli

Address: 7 Rue Moussa Ben Noussaire, Essaouira N/A, Morocco
Location: Morocco > Marrakech-Tensift-El Haouz Region > Essaouira
Amenities:
Beach Kitchenette Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #23 of 158 B&Bs / Inns in Essaouira
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Number of rooms: 4
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Dar Lazuli is a 200 year old house in Essaouira, lovingly renovated to retain its original features in harmony with contemporary designs and comforts for a 21st Century visitor. It's located just inside the medina walls and beside the main square. Comfortable and easy self-catering apartments where you can completely relax, forget about the real world and immerse yourself in North African escapism. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Dar Lazuli Hotel Essaouira

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