We unexpectadly stayed at this Riad, after we arrived in Marrakesh to find our original hotel booked in October had double booked us in favour of a large party who wanted to hire the whole hotel. (see review on Palais Soltan). We had to find accomodation for a 3 night stay.
We contacted Riad L'Orangerie using details from the Lonely Planet guide to Marrakesh, not knowing anything about it, or having seen any photos.
The lady who answered the phone did not speak English, but she understood why I was ringing and gave me a number for reservations. I am guessing that I spoke with the owner. I explained the situation, and he said he had 2 rooms left for that same day, and we could choose whichever we liked. He asked if we wanted dinner that night and gave me directions on how to get there.
By the time we arrived I was upset at the situation with the other hotel (having booked the trip as a present for my husbands birthday), and we were both hot and tired. However, stepping through the small door into the oasis of calm was amazing.
They were expecting us and showed us quickly to the rooms, which were both overlooking the pool area. They were both clean, with character and traditional features, a good shower, comfy bed and electric heater. We chose one and settled in. When we came downstairs to give our passports there was mint tea waiting for us.
The housekeepers did not speak much English, and we very little French, but we managed to get by, and they were lovely!
Dinner was amazing - very freshly cooked, and our table was laid out with rose petals. We could choose where to have dinner - in the Salon/Lounge, on the terrace or by the pool/main courtyard. We ate there every night.
The Riad is calm, clean and full of character. There were no TV's in either room we saw or in the lounge/Salon area, which added to the calm relaxing feel to the place. Hearing the housekeepers talking and cooking etc gave the place a homely feel.
The location was ideal, being in the Medina and 5 minutes walk from the main square. Once inside the Riad you would never know how central you were.
There is a speaker calling people to prayer just outside, but once you get used to the times it becomes no bother and adds to the overall character of the city.
We did not use the pool, which is really just a place for a refreshing dip in summer, but it looked clean. The roof terrace is beautiful with great views of the Atlas mountains.
The staff are very hospitable, and if they knew you were relaxing on the roof terrace they would bring up mint tea without us asking (which never cost us anything). They served breakfast whenever you came down (which was about 9.30-10am for us!) and again you could choose where to take it.
They arranged an airport transfer for us when we left.
As a reference, the hotel does not take cards, we paid in local currency for our stay, but would take Euros if we stay there again (which we are planning too). We will also try and learn more french..
Definatley the place to stay to experience great service, a relaxing atmosphere, and great location.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Restored to its previous grandeur by a passionate team, this ancient Marrakech residence has been transformed into a Riad with a delightful ambiance. The seven spicy bedrooms, warm and colourful like their name, open onto two patios. The garden patio, where you can enjoy the flowers and aromatic plants while the fountain trickles in the background and the pool patio, an invitation to the art of relaxation, beside the sky blue mosaic pool. ... more less
- Also Known As:
- Riad De l`Orangeraie Hotel Marrakech