We stayed at the Dar el Zemora for five nights in the second week of July, which coincided with the start of Ramadan and some high temperatures. After stepping off the plane into what felt like the hot cycle of a tumble drier we were scooped up by the taxi driver and driven to the Dar el Zemora which is located in the Palmeraie district of Marrakech. The Palmeraie is a huge, dry, flat palm grove about 10 minutes outside the central square Jemaa el Fnaa and is home to luxury houses all hidden behind high walls. There is very little to see and it would be easy to get lost as much of it looks the same.
The gravelled drive of Dar el Zemora is surrounded by rose gardens and scattered with Moroccan lamps lit with candles and rom the moment we arrived it felt like we had come to somewhere magical. The hotel, which feels more like a country house, has five rooms and a separate two bedroomed/private pool pavilion oozes understated luxury, nothing opulent just very good taste. The freshly filled vases of roses are a delight, the range of books in the Library comprehensive, everything has been thought of.
The remarks in the guest book are testament to the restorative nature of Dar el Zemora, everyone seems to be touched by the tranquility and the healing nature of the surroundings. The beautiful pool which we frequently had to ourselves is set in the gardens and cooled towels and iced water are brought to the sun beds. Meals are taken on the terrace accompanied by very vocal frogs and bold sparrows and you can opt in or out for as many or as few as you wish.
It is no wonder that guests find it hard to pull themselves away and take the short taxi ride (200 Drs return) to the exotic bonkers-ness of central Marrakech, which when we we there was made all the more dramatic by two spectacular rain and lightning shows. We ate from one of the myriad stalls which start setting up from 5pm in Jemaa el Fna square and enjoyed cold drinks from one of the surrounding rooftop cafes. We also ventured into the Atlas Mountains to see a different side of Morocco, which was organised by Youssef the gracious manager. The hotel is closed for three weeks in August to give everyone a well deserved rest, service which appears this effortless is only achieved by a lot of hard work.
I can not recommend this hotel highly enough, the plaudits are richly deserved.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Situated in the Palmeraie area of Marrakech and set within 1 hectare of gardens. Large swimming pool. Traditionally built with some contempory features. Great space for a maximum of 14 guests. Many sitting rooms, Dining Room and Hamman on site. 4 Suites, 3 bedrooms. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Dar Zemora Marrakech
- Dar Zemora Hotel Marrakech