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“Loved the El Andalous!”
Review of Hotel El Andalous

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Hotel El Andalous
Ranked #396 of 501 Hotels in Marrakech
Reviewed August 17, 2008

We have just returned from 10 days at the El Andalous. We had a fantastic holiday, spending the days by the pool in the sun and the evenings with snake charmers, belly dancers and musicians! The hotel has all the charm you would expect of a traditional Moroccan hotel. The room had 2 double beds. We had requested a pool view room, which was great. We were on a half board package, and could choose to eat at lunchtime or in the evening. There was always plenty to eat, although it did get rather repetitive by the end of our holiday. The only down side for us, was that our children aged 8 and 10, struggled to make friends at the pool to play with, as we were the only English. French is spoken as well as Arabic, but as they don't speak either, they found it difficult to enjoy the company of other children. However, they also say they had a fabby holiday, so it didn't spoil it for them!

  • Stayed: August 2008, traveled with family
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1  Thank RAECambridge_UK
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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359 - 365 of 825 reviews

Reviewed August 12, 2008

the unfriendliest staff and management I have ever came across, not even a 100$ tip could make them smile! the food was pathetic, and the drinks realy expensive... Don,t book this hotel if your looking for good service with a smile,

  • Stayed: August 2008, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank ESwart
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 26, 2008

We booked our holiday through a tour operator without consulting TripAdvisor first.Having subsequently read poor reviews of this hotel we were somewhat concerned but decided to go ahead with the holiday as booked.Overall we were satisfied with the accommodation-the room had two comfortable double beds,excellent heating/air conditioning,room safe which was cheap to hire and a flat screen T.V.with a channel showing films in English which,in our experience is rare even in more expensive hotels.The bathroom appeared to have been fairly recently refitted and there was a constant supply of very hot water.Also a separate toilet which proved to be vital as we both were extremely ill with stomach bugs at one point!The hotel was spotlessly clean throughout and we found the majority of the staff to be very friendly and helpful although to be fair we did our own thing most of the time.In response to other reviews,yes some aspects of the hotel were in need of some refurbishment and we would describe it as a very Moroccan style hotel which we liked.Whilst staying at a similar hotel in Agadir a couple of years ago ,the rep told us that some people had asked to be moved to another hotel because the one they were in was too Moroccan! I suppose that if you have just gone away to sit in the sun then one of the sanitised european style hotels is probably what you want.We were on bed and breakfast and this was where the standard fell down badly as the food selection was poor.Basically cornflakes or bread with a few bits of rather nasty looking cold meat.Eggs in various forms also but not freshly cooked.If you went down after 9.00am the cutlery and crockery had run out and the were bringing it back out from the kitchen still wet which we weren't very happy about.However there was unlimitted coffee,tea and fresh orange juice and a very pleasant waiter who showed us to a table with a pool view each morning.We ate all other meals in local restaurants,most of which were of an acceptable standard and we found a very good supermarket behind the Oriental Restaurant on the main road which sold everything you could possibly want.Taxis and horse and carriages are fairly cheap if you haggle ,and are the ideal way to get to the Medina.It isn't a long walk but on hot days you can get very dehydrated quite quickly and it is advisable to carry water with you if you do want the exercise.The Hivernage area where the hotel is situated is relatively upmarket with wide avenues and many floral displays and at no time did we feel threatened when out walking day or night.The Medina and souks are out of this world and we spent many hours walking around exploring,got lost several times and had to be rescued by helpful local people who showed us the way back to the main square-one or two asked for money for this service others didn't!! Motor traffic is allowed down all except the smallest alleyways and this is quite hazardous especially the scooters and motorbikes which travel at quite high speeds down what we would assume to be footpaths only.There are several palaces,museums and monuments to be visited in the Medina and we covered some of these on an organised excursion with a guide which we thought was good value for money.Also there is very little information in English in these places so ,if you want to do anything more than look , a guide is essential.On the subject of language most things including restaurant menus are in French or Arabic only which is obviously a bit of a problem for non French speakers.There have been some comments made about the treatment of the carriage horses and as animal lovers we were prepared for the worst but we were relieved to find that the majority of the horses were in good condition and ,contrary to some reports ,were not whipped viciously by the drivers.There is a problem with the availability of drinking water for the horses but this is being addressed by the British run charity that has the animal refuge in Marrakech and hopefully this will soon improve.In spite of the fact that we were both ill while we were there and for some time after we came home
,we found this to be a fantastic destination and look forward to going back.

  • Stayed: April 2008, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank carlorex
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 28, 2008

Hotel
This is not a 4*. It is 3*. There were no fridges or tea making facilities in the rooms. We were disappointed when we were given room 202. The carpet had an iron burn mark and was covered in stains, as were the bed covers. We complained and they gave us room 510, which had a marble floor and clean bedding with a poolside view on the top floor (5th) I would ask for a room on 5th floor with an even number for the poolside view along with a view of Atlas mountains. Staff were friendly and try to help but French and Arabic are clearly the spoken languages. Some of the cleaners could speak better English than the staff at reception. Got the same poor breakfast every morning. Poolside bar staff were nice and the food was okay (about £20 for 2 with drinks). We ate at the hotel on one evening in the Cordoba restaurant. It had a fixed price for a self-service buffet, which was excellent. Expect to pay £10 for a bottle of wine and £2.50 for a small bottle of Heineken.

Hotel Bar
We went there on our last night (Thursday) and there was a live band playing and a good crowd of locals. The music was actually good and the locals were all getting on the dance floor. The atmosphere was really good and it made our stay that much better.

Djama El Fna
This is the city square, very crowded and full of entertainers, snake charmers, cigarette sellers, tissue sellers, monkeys on a leash and guitar and tambourine players. Take photos but expect to pay 5 DH for it. Eat at the food stalls if you feel brave. Enter the souks off the square and you’ll find a network of about 1500 tiny shops selling everything and you can even see the different sections of leather, potteries, wood and ironworks all done by hand. Good prices but expect to haggle hard. Cut their asking price to ¼ and then work to about ½ original price. Be prepared to walk away and they’ll call you back if they are willing to meet your final offer. Some shopkeepers are very pushy and it can seem intimidating at first but that’s how they are.

Rue De La Liberte
This is where the real shops are. Its like a modern street with good shops and a McDonalds. Sellers were much more friendly but still happy to haggle. Fake goods are for sale everywhere (sunglasses cost about £3-4 or 50-60DH). When we asked to be taken to this street, we were dropped at the Centre De Commercial, which is clearly designed for tourists with fixed prices, but these were twice what we had been paying elsewhere. Rue De La Liberte is the next parallel street about 100 metres away.

Taxis
We used about 5. None have meters or ones that work. Negotiate a price before you get in. Most places are 20-30DH. We asked at reception for estimates beforehand.

Driving
Don’t bother. High risk of a crashing and all vehicles are already bashed up. Traffic cops everywhere with speed guns.

Stay
Stay for 3 nights and you’ll easily get everything done. Not that much to see/do. The Mosque tower, tombs, and gardens can all be done in a day. The YSL garden is a MUST, like a scene from heaven. Go on a camel, take a ride in a horse drawn carriage. Have a Hamman at the hotel, very good. Go to Chez Ali for a meal and show with a difference. Okay food but great show after the meal.

Restaurant
We went to Dar Essalam Restaurant. It was awesome. Built in the 17th century and fit for a King of that era. It is underground and the waiters alone were very entertaining with their little tricks. There is also live music and belly dancing to be enjoyed.

Tour Guide
One of our guides was Ali whose English was very impressive and the best we came across out there (he also had a great sense of humour). He is the perfect guide out there and can take you to all the sights and give you the history to match. He gave us his card and you won’t regret using him. Abdel Ali CHANTIT, through Menara Tours.

Customs
We read that holding hands was a no-no. This is untrue. We were unchallenged for the whole of our stay and saw many other locals also holding hands and showing their affection to each other. This is a very liberal and progressive Islamic country. We wanted a photo with a local police officer but they all refused and one of our guides actually warned against it.

Language
On the whole, all the shopkeepers could speak better English than the hotel staff but we had no problem getting by.

Final Verdict
Marrakech is a nice place to visit. Hotel was fairly good and the weather was about 25C each day. Not enough to do but clearly tourism is the main source of income and money is being spent on improvements. 8/10

Stayed: March 2008
4  Thank Tony_warks
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 28, 2008

I stayed at this hotel over Easter for a long weekend break in Marrakech. The hotel is about a 15 minute walk along pleasant residential streets to the city centre. The neighbourhood is nice and felt very safe. The hotel has a nice pool and bar area however I didnt eat there so cant comment on the food. The staff were freindly and helpful. No complaints at all.

  • Stayed: March 2008, traveled with friends
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1  Thank H1981
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 23, 2008

Just returned from the El Andalous and pretty much agree with other reviews.
Just a few things which will hopefully make your stay more enjoyable:

Try and get a room poolside as it is much quieter than rooms over looking the road.

Pay no more than 100 for taxi from airport, you will encounter hassle agreeing the price, but 100 is more than fair.

Meals at hotel ok, not 4 star but adequate, and for the small supplement paid edible, breakfast same every day, but good hot coffee and lush orange juice.

Service in main bar and pool bar VERY slow, with distinct lack of customer service .

Rest of staff particularly very tall waiter in main restaurant/reception and housekeeping all very good and a credit to the tourism industry.

Had a hammam in the hotel spa, fabulous experience and very reasonably priced ...a must do!!!

Booked a couple of tours through hotel direct. much cheaper than tour companies.

The Fantasia to chez ali is very cheesy, although setting magical, like something from disney.
Show itself very poor, lacked continuity and seemed a bit make shift.
Fun sitting in the tents, meal plentiful, however be warned if you are a vegetarian or squeamish, as one of the courses is lamb.
The lamb is literrally thrown on a plate very basically, bones,ribs.lumps of fat everything.
Im sure it was delicious, but the sheer amount and basicness put everyone off.
This is followed by a huge veg/chicken tagine course..you won't go hungry, but we learned afterwards you could have swapped the lamb for chicken...top tip!

If you decide to eat in the moroccan in the hotel there is a set meal for no supplement, we opted against this and paid the supplement for a la carte, but in hindsight, the set menu looked as good if not better.

There is a off licence 5 mins from the hotel, and well worth stocking up on supplies, we are wine drinkers and a good bottle of red or white could be had for £3 a bottle.

Aiport has been upgraded since our last visit and is now much better with reasonable facilities, rememebr you can only take 1000 dirham out of the country.

All in all an enjoybale trip, yes hotel is dated, but clean, a good position and for the price paid we can't grumble.

Book flights seperately and accom through travel republic.

Enjoy!


Jayne

  • Stayed: February 2008, traveled with family
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1  Thank SCOOBYRedditch
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 15, 2008

Pretty much in agreement with other reviews, not the grandest hotel in the area, but good value for money. Rooms were cleaned daily and the standard OK. But as other people have said no fridge, I took on board what another reviewer said about getting a full ice bucket every day - but when I tried it for some reason it couldn't happen - I never got to the bottom of it. The only way we found to get an ice bucket was to order a bottle of wine through room service, which came with ice bucket!!! - we would drink the wine, but leave the bottle in the bucket so the chambermaid didn't take it away, then the following morning go to the supermarket to get ice and bottled water (and more wine from the off license next door!) - and fill it up. I also found it most strange that I couldn't get a glass of wine, or even a bottle of wine at the pool bar on an evening before going out for dinner, we had to order it through room service, then bring it downstaires, yet people who were dining by the pool could order a bottle of wine with their meal...?? - the only other downside was the air con unit extractor was on the small balcony and spat out warm air and water at you when sat on it, so you had to turn the air con off inside, but nice to sit with a drink over looking the pool and watching the sun set. Pool area is good, but no brolleys for shade you need to position yourself under the trees, and move with the sun. Breakfasts were rubbish, but you could usually make some form and sandwich to have with a coffee. Eating out ranged from very reasonable to very expensive - we ate at a fantastic cross section of places and enjoyed it all, but if you wanted a glass of wine with dinner, you had to go to the more expensive options in the new town.
All in all, a good base to experience the sites and sounds of Morrocco!

  • Stayed: September 2007, traveled as a couple
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Thank SarahLeeds_UK
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hotel El Andalous

Address: Avenue du President Kennedy | Hivernage, Marrakech 40000, Morocco
Phone Number:
Location: Morocco > Marrakech-Tensift-El Haouz Region > Marrakech
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #396 of 501 Hotels in Marrakech
Price Range: $60 - $123 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Hotel El Andalous 4*
Number of rooms: 195
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