As tripadvisor reviews are such a matter of expectations, here is what we were hoping for in choosing Aguaviva: a relaxing, calm riad away from the noise and bustle of the square/souks, but still within a nice walking distance, tasty breakfasts and occasional dinners in, and with helpful staff who could advise us on the best routes to see the sights and shops. We got all of that and more.
First, we cannot recommend the staff highly enough.
- Sightseeing advice. Even our USA jet-lagged brains could remember the excellent directions to and from the square, as well as the nearest road/taxi stand, thanks to the walking tour upon arrival.
- Food. Breakfasts were filling and tasty, and we arranged for our first dinner in Marrakesh to be on the rooftop. One of our best dinners of the trip! We were also happy with the restaurants recommended, and stuffed ourselves with tagines and pastillas around the medina.
- General helpfulness - some nights, after having a large and yummy lunch out, we only wanted some of the delicious Moroccan bread, wine (yes, there is Moroccan wine and it is surprisingly good/refreshing for a couple entirely unfamiliar with it!) and cheese/spreads for dinner. We were quickly and graciously provided with everything on the rooftop for a cozy night in. We also had some laundry done on our last day since we were heading for another destination, which came back cleaner than our laundry room at home does! And for our early-morning airport run, a tasty "to-go" breakfast was packed and ready for us.
- We did an overnight in Essaouira (the Supratours bus worked well for this), and the riad kindly kept our room and extra bags for us so we did not have to lug everything around for one night. If we had more time in Morocco, it would have been great to stay on the coast for longer -- the wind, sun and more relaxed haggling were a fun break from the more-intense souk experience.
Second, the riad and our room were lovely - we chose Baraka and it was a nice size for two, although the addition of a low table (for resting luggage on and storing shoes under) would be helpful to keep things organized. Bed was very comfortable and we appreciated having lots of hooks for pajamas, clothes that had been worn only briefly, etc. Even without closing the shutters to the window at night, we were never disturbed by noise (this room is on the 2nd floor).
Third, the location was perfect. Our little street felt like a quiet neighborhood, and we enjoyed saying hello to some of our favorite "local" merchants (the teenager selling nuts a few doors down from the pharmacy got to know us and our almond addiction by the end!)
Fourth - this isn't the riad, but their recommended hammam (Bain Bleu) was a fabulous experience and now I'm craving one in the States! You could go to a local hammam for less, but we wanted to do a couples session so that would not work for obvious reasons. Felt a decade younger walking out!
Many thanks to David, Manel, Sara, Aina, Oti, Simo, Ibtissam & Sukaina (thanks to the email for all of the spelling :) ) for a wonderful trip. In Sha Allah it will be our first and not last!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Charming Riad in a traditional and quiet neighbourhood in the Medina. A place to relax after an exhausting day in Marrakech. ... more less
- Reservation Options:
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- Also Known As:
- Riad Aguaviva Hotel Marrakech