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“Relaxing and Rustic Riad!”
Review of Riad Amssaffah

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Riad Amssaffah
Ranked #473 of 500 Hotels in Marrakech
Poole, United Kingdom
2 reviews
“Relaxing and Rustic Riad!”
Reviewed October 13, 2011

This is a lovely and comfortable Riad right in the centre of the Medina. Once inside it is surprisingly peaceful and relaxing considering all the chaos outside its door. This is quite an old Riad and it is a bit rough around the edges, with the odd light not working and a few cracks here and there, but I think this adds to its charm. The staff are very helpful and knowledgeable and are always happy to recommend places for you to go. They also provide an invaluable hand drawn map with landmarks to get to the main square. No other map is accurate enough for you to find your way. You can book day trips at the hotel, but we managed to find the same trip about 200D cheaper by haggling with some of the tour operators around the main square. As noted be other reviewers it is very difficult to find as it is so close to the Maze of the Souks. I would recommend booking a transfer from the airport as the road outside the riad is too narrow for cars to get down and our driver walked us to the door. A taxi would not do this.
Also if you're a light sleeper then take some ear plugs. I got woken at about 5am every morning by the call to prayer from the nearby mosque!

  • Stayed October 2011, traveled with friends
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Helpful?
Thank LizB79
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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401 reviews from our community

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English first
Brentwood, United Kingdom
1 review
Reviewed August 30, 2011

Traditional and comfortable rooms, well decorated in traditional style. Riad is a little difficult to find so recommend you get the address in English and Arabic but do not expect to dropped at the door!! The sisters who run the Riad are a mind of local info and have great maps to get you around. They will help with absolutely anything. All the staff are friendly and can't do enough for you. Breakfast is a bit repetitive, the evening meal we had at very short notice was very good even if the portions were a bit small, i.e just meat no veg or cous cous but do try to give them notice and you will have greater choice. Also they seemed to need notice if you wanted wine as they had none chilled, this was surprising. Cold Beer is available at anytime and at a reasonable price Be aware that the roof is not really geared up for sun bathing, however if pushed they will bring out some beds (not sun beds), this is a shame as the roof could be a fantastic assest and it could be used for a lot more. Splash pool is very refreshing. Amazing building and very quiet once you get past the front door, really very relaxing. Marrakech is busy and noisy and people will not take no for an answer which after a while can get annoying, in general most people are very pleasant but some are very rude.
Reccomend Cafe Arabe for good Italian food and fantastic roof top for beers, wines and cocktails and views. Also Al Barraka is good experoence but not cheap but definately worth it. Even the square offers good food very cheapily and they do make you laugh with Del Boy impressions and repeating Asda and Sainsbury ads!!!! Strongly recommend this Riad and this city.

Room Tip: insist on a/c and fridge. We heard that some rooms had
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  • Stayed August 2011, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank ptbseb
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
manchester
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed July 23, 2011

We loved the Riad, it was incredible. The staff were lovely and kind, the rooms were very comfortable and the place was beautiful. Not comparible to large modern hotels- (some comments on here have criticised a lack of tea/coffee amenities etc.) We had a magical experience here, and felt like royalty in this beautiful little palace. It is a very calm and quiet place amongst the hullabaloo of the souks, which are wonderful but can be overwhelming. It is a little walk from Djemma el Fnaa (about 10 mins through the souks), from where you can get taxis etc. Let us impart with you a little direction advice in order for you to find the square:

Turn to the right,
Turn to the right,
Head through the stonnnnes (Two stones under arch)
Cafe Arab to the left,
Bain to the left (Shop that had bath outside, but you can identify this part of the journey simply as a crossroads where you...)
Turn to the right....

Cafe Bourganviiiiiiiiilia (to the tune of the Marseilleise)
Turn to the left
Bear to the right
Bear to the right
DJEMMA EL FNAA!

Overall we would recommend this riad, particularly for couples. Staying in the middle of the souks does wear you out, so if you would prefer some distance from the craziness of the old town then maybe stay a little further out, perhaps in the new town. (There were even some hotels we passed in Ourika valley that looked amazing, but about half an hour's drive from the medina.) If you have a large family or are a big group of friends, perhaps the riad might be a bit quiet for you, (because it is so beautiful and the staff are so polite.)

I wouldn't recommend making your first trip out of the riad at night, as this is what we did and got lost, which was a bit scary in the dark on our first day.

If people tell you a road is closed or 'this is the way to the square' say 'no thank you' and persevere with your map reading, or getting lost, or reciting a helpful song in your head- whichever works for you.

Breakfast was lovely, bountiful supply of food, coffee and tea. Lovely lovely ladies who waited on you hand and foot.

We booked with Teletext holidays and it was very cheap.

Another final tip- listen out for the little birds that dance around the courtyard at night, stand on the roof terrace and listen to the call to prayer in the evening. Apart from this, it is amazing how much of the noise of the medina is trapped out of the riad.

ENJOY

  • Stayed July 2011, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
3 Thank matthan88
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bedford
Level 5 Contributor
59 reviews
31 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 52 helpful votes
Reviewed May 8, 2011

Just returned from a stay in Riad Amssafah. When we arrived and I saw the entrance beneath an arch I was worried about what I had booked but when the door opened, wow 100% traditional moroccan, it was fabulous. No there wasnt tea and coffee as previous guest has written on here but it is Marrakech not Blackpool. I took my travel kettle and tea and coffee with me as I did not expect to find it here. Can be difficult to find when wandering around so on the map I had in my travel guide I asked receptionist to mark the Riad and we had not trouble at all. A Riad is a traditional home for extended Moroccan families in the past and it does have a homely feel about it. Rooms also have a fridge which is great to keep water and wine cool. Had a fabulous night out at the Fantasia show which is on, wonderful traditional Moroccan meal and then a show with beautiful horses in the outside arena to follow, all finished off with a firework display. Also done a great trip into Atlas mountains, breakfast with a Berber family and lunch in a beautiful hotel all included for around £30. Will stay here again if i return.

Room Tip: Get good travel guide with map of the medina enc.
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  • Stayed May 2011, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank belmac
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed April 4, 2011

Recently come back from here and would not recommend anyone to go. First day we got robbed (threatened with violence unless we paid a sum of money) literally on the doorstep of the riad. The receptionist found it funny and did not offer to call the police etc. The rooms very rarely have hot water. The location is the opposite side of the souks from the main square, which although is a 15-20 min walk it's very scary and hostile when dark. The entrance is down a dark secluded alley and very hard to find. If you must go to Marrakech stay elsewhere, best to stay out of the old town. It's ok for a day walking around but not that much to see apart from a few museums and mosques.

  • Stayed March 2011
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Helpful?
3 Thank CFreestone
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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Colne, United Kingdom
Level 4 Contributor
33 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
Reviewed February 28, 2011

I wanted to experience Morrocco - and opted for a Riad as opposed to a hotel.
It was sold as a four star... It was Mis-sold.
Once a fine building, it is now evidently living on past glories.
Oozing a decadent charm it tries it's best but I expected more.
The rooms although clean, didn't have tea/ coffee facilities, or regular hot water. Shuttered windows meant we heard everything from prayer calls, other guests, cleaners- it wasn't relaxing.
The roof terrace was under stocked and smelt of cat urine.
And the unimaginative breakfast... Groundhog day!!!

  • Stayed February 2011
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Helpful?
Thank malajusted1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Lancaster, United Kingdom
Level 4 Contributor
35 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
Reviewed January 2, 2011

A nice, comfortable Riad in the very heartbeat of the rather exciting and chaotic souk. A warm welcome from staff and nice, clean spacious room, [massive bed], beautiful moroccan funiture. Problem with hot water the first day, but after that it was fine. One very good plus of the room is the heater which doubled as air- conditioner, we turned it on straight away, as it was 26c when we arrived.
The service from the staff was exceptional, the lady on reception gave us a map of the souk in English and arabic, which helped us find our way through the melee, not scarry but can be a bit daunting at night. she . She also confirmed our return flights and transport on her computor for us. she also booked a meal for us on christmas eve at La Baraka in the square. A riad, but more in line with a palace, beautiful, amazing place, with fantastic moroccan food at middle price. ie; 5 courses from 350drh to 6-7 courses at 500drms. Said looked after us, very pleasant, smiling young man. A qiuet place to come back to after a day in the souk. Cheaper beer and wine than most places. a great place to stay. will be going back in April and booking a room with a bath, only had a shower because we booked late and they had none left.
We had our meal the first night at the riad as we arrived late and were tired, the meal was typical moroccan, nice and ample and cheap [recommend] followed by a few beers 30drh each, every where else you will pay 50drhs upwards. The third day there was a bad rain storm in the afternoon, we got drenched and rushed back to the riad, where we were quickly ushered into a big beautiful lounge with big sofas and low tables and a big roaring fire [bliss] where we relaxed, dried off and decided to have warming mint tea [recommend] a few beers and bread cheese and fruit, olives ect. I think the lounge was part of there own accomodation, but did not ask, anyway it was very hospitable of them to offer us this comfort. I would highly recommend this Riad , photos coming soon. Afew tips; tip Said at the start of your stay ie 20-30drhs and he will look after you and also throughout your stay.
Ladies, when in rome do as romans do ie: cover up if staying in a riad in the souk or medina, long dresses, jeans, skirts below knees ect, please respect there culture, they are a lovely hospitable people. Before buying in the souk, go to the Centre Artisonal, Rue de la Kasbah, where items are fixed price and you will get an idea when bartering in the souk. I bought most pottery there and bartered for throws etc in souk. Be warned though, if you visit the tombs, Centre Artisonal is 50-100yds up the road. A lady will stop you dressed in black to entice you into her herbalist, treble the prices in the Centre, I was very badly conned as I did"nt know the Centre was there. Anyway I could write forever about my holiday, will put more info on with photos soon.

  • Stayed December 2010, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank gr20goody
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Riad Amssaffah

Property: Riad Amssaffah
Address: Bab Taghzout Diour Saboun Amssafah,, Marrakech 40000, Morocco
Location: Morocco > Marrakech-Tensift-El Haouz Region > Marrakech
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Restaurant Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #473 of 500 Hotels in Marrakech
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:3 star — Riad Amssaffah 3*
Number of rooms: 20
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Also Known As:
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