We stayed at Riad Massin several days in December 2012 and January 2013, with gaps for trips to other places in Morocco. We were not given a room in the riad itself, but rather in the house next door (number 2). Every time we wanted to go to our room, we had to ring the bell at the riad, ask to be let in, and walk over with the person (usually Aziz or Brahim) who would unlock the door. That is an inconvenience you may want to avoid, although during our stays there were fewer guests in number 2 than in the riad.
The riad is very handsome, with nice old carved wood, carved plaster, and tile work, and it has a lot of potential. However, neither property is well-maintained nor ever heated, though the riad seems to get more cleaning attention than does number 2. It is cold in the winter, even though we happened upon pretty fair weather most days, so we had to wear sweaters and jackets indoors most of the time. Our room had six bunk beds and one bathroom, but most of the time we had no other roommates. We did have a portable heater for all but one of the nights. It took the chill off but didn't really make the room warm.
The place is not kept particularly clean, and there was black mold on the inside of the old shower curtain. No towels without paying extra, and minimal toilet paper, so we were glad we brought our own towels and paper--and alcohol wipes to clean the surfaces in the bath. It's also gloomy, with only a few low-wattage light fixtures, and over half of them burned out, not just in our room but in the whole house. The promised locking cabinets were not available because the keys were missing. We found the keys eventually, and a good thing, because every day they promised to get the locks replaced but never did.
The sheets and pillowcases appeared to have been washed, but the staff didn't change the fitted sheets, it seemed, only the flat sheets. The pillows smelled like dirty laundry, which we cured by putting them in plastic bags and using our own pillowcases--a tip for many places in Morocco. The comforters were warm but stained--in one case, bloodstained.
When we first arrived, about 9:15 a.m., we were greeted by the maid, Hajj, and given mint tea while we waited for Brahim to book us in and show us our room. We must have waited nearly an hour. We thought he was on some errand or something, but we later learned that the staff all sleep in late all the time. The mint tea is a nice tradition in Morocco, and we enjoyed it in other riads, but not always here. Once, one of us was given cold tea in a glass that smelled of fish--enough to put you off tea altogether.
We appreciated the staff's efforts to answer our questions and help us when needed, and the price of the riad was reasonable. But the hotel business requires constant care of the property and of the guests. Don't let a good thing go bad.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Riad Massin is a magnificent 19th-century Riad, it stands alongside the ramparts (historical wall surrounding Medina) of Marrakech. Our beautiful Riad is located just a few minutes away from the famous Jamae alfnae square and the souks. It stands just ten yards away from the historic Bab Doukala gate, and offers direct access to motor vehicles (attended parking available). With its inventive and delicate cuisine, this magical Riad is the ideal place to degustate the delicious flavours of Morocco. You can relax in the patio with the fountain sounds or on the terrace, and enjoy the unbeatable quietness of the Red City and the snow-covered Atlas mountains. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Riad Massin Hotel Marrakech