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“High standard in Essaouira”

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L'Heure Bleue Palais
Ranked #11 of 74 Hotels in Essaouira
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed December 13, 2012

First -- what happened to the rule that motor bikes were not allowed in the old town??? We have visited Essaouira several times over the years and we really appreciated the pedestrian-only medina, so different from the motor-bike crazy alleys of Marrakech. This time there were bikes everywhere, beeping at pedestrians to get out of the way, blowing nasty fumes at customers in the cafes of the main square, and creating a noisy ruckus tearing up and down the medina at night. Everybody we spoke to is fed up with the bikes. One restaurant (Il Mare) had five of them revving outside its entrance and a whole tour group took one look and decided to eat somewhere else. Our waiter at a cafe in the main square cursed every time a bike went by and told us it gets worse every week. A carpet shop owner was in despair about it. What on earth are the authorities in Essaouira thinking???

Anyway, the hotel. On past visits we usually stayed at the old Sofitel, but as this is no longer a Sofitel we decided to try Heure Bleue, and we are glad we did. The hotel has a calm atmosphere of discreet quality -- for example, there is no big sign outside the hotel proclaiming its name or even that it's a hotel. Inside, the public areas feel more like a rather old fashioned club, especially the spacious, wood panelled lounge and bar area. Even the reception desk isn't what you might expect, instead there is wooden screen and staff pop out from behind it to attend your needs. And very attentive they are too. The service was excellent and the staff very responsive to any question or request.

The hotel is situated just inside the walls of the medina, a short walk from the main square, the beach, and the port. It is organized in the traditional Moroccan style, around an open courtyard. The rooms are a bit compact, but are comfortable and very well equipped with quality bathrooms and fixtures. There is a lovely planted roof terrace with excellent views over the town and the sea. The breakfasts were quite sumptuous. We did not eat in the hotel for other meals, as Essaouira has so many interesting restaurants now. All in all this was a very calm and comfortable stay at one of the very few first class hotels in Essaouira. Compared with other hotels it is definitely rather pricey though.

  • Stayed: September 2012, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank Jethro M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
f_laustriat, General Manager at L'Heure Bleue Palais, responded to this reviewResponded December 16, 2012

Thank you for your review About the atmosphere of our house and service. It is true that the circulation in the medina becomes a problem and I will forward your comments to city authorities

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266 - 272 of 686 reviews

Reviewed December 5, 2012

A delightful hotel, well managed with good staff and delicious food. We passes 3 days in this beautiful and well situated.Nice Moroccan atmosphere in a truly pleasant hotel. The room are large enough and nice decorated.
Nice arabic perfume smell inside the hotel. Check- in took some time.

  • Stayed: November 2012, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank sarah c
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
f_laustriat, General Manager at L'Heure Bleue Palais, responded to this reviewResponded December 7, 2012

Thank you very much for your nice comment regarding your recent stay at Heure Bleue Palais. It is a great pleasure to receive your feedback.

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Reviewed November 25, 2012

Relais & Chateaux rarely disappoints… and L’Heure Bleue Palais is no exception. We had a lovely three night stay here after doing some travelling around Morocco. Much needed R&R time. It was the perfect place to unwind – and is truly an oasis within the hectic and congested medina.

The service was great. We were upgraded to a suit on the second floor which provided us a nice size room we could read and relax in. The décor is very similar to a Raffles.
The breakfast was great – and we enjoyed being able to sit each morning in the beautiful courtyard while enjoying the buffet and reading the newspaper (a few international papers available.) In the evenings – we enjoyed the library / bar – difficult to capture its elegance in photos, really a very nice room. We also enjoyed the billiards / snooker room. It was a bit chilly for the pool, but we did spend a lot of time on the roof terrace for lunch and just lounging and reading.

I had every intention of tying out the Hamas… but somehow was not able to fit that in during my three days of doing nothing! (Good sign of having some good down time!) Based on the service, décor, cleanliness and overall aesthetics at this hotel – I am sure it is great.

Room Tip: Higher floor have the larger suites.
  • Stayed: November 2012, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank Higbie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
f_laustriat, General Manager at L'Heure Bleue Palais, responded to this reviewResponded November 29, 2012

Thank you for taking the time to share your experience with us, we are very happy that you enjoyed your stay among us, and we look forward to welcoming you back soon!

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Reviewed November 9, 2012

Luxurious Hotel on the edge of the Medina. Very Expensive but beautiful place to stay. Reception staff welcoming and provided an excellent service. Rooftop terrace wonderful views and great location for breakfast. Service slow at breakfast and not the same high standard as other 5 star hotels I have stayed in. Crepes always arrived cold which was disappointing. I missed having a kettle in the room so that I could make tea or coffee when I wanted rather than having to wait for room service. I would stay again and recommend to family and friends.

  • Stayed: October 2012, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank Serendipity47
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
f_laustriat, General Manager at L'Heure Bleue Palais, responded to this reviewResponded November 29, 2012

we thank you for your feedback. We appreciate your comment which may help us make improvements.

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Reviewed October 23, 2012

We stayed here for five nights and for the most part I would say the hotel is great.
The roof top pool and sun deck is probably as good as anything you could wish to find. The room was spacious and well maintained throughout our stay and breakfast served on the roof top is a joy. The staff were very friendly and helpful and created an atmosphere of peace and calm throughout.
The general cleanliness leaves a lot to be desired for a 5 Star Hotel. The floors although swept daily need washing. I used a wet flannel to rub three or four areas of tiling and the dirt lifted with no effort at all. It is a shame because the hotel could be spectacular.
Our biggest disappointment was the complete lack of menu translation available in the restaurant. Now at £40/50 per head I want to know what I am getting and if the hotel cannot see fit to print their menus in English then I, like several other couples I spoke to in the hotel, just go out to one of the many restaurants in town. Given we were there for five nights I would safely say the hotel lost at least £250 income from us alone and judging by the vacant dining tables every night that figure could be multiplied several times over.
I would also expect a better TV choice in the room in a 5 Star hotel. Half a dozen French channels and one English news channel is really poor. Satellite TV is expected.

  • Stayed: October 2012, traveled as a couple
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Thank OakbankHouse
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
f_laustriat, General Manager at L'Heure Bleue Palais, responded to this reviewResponded October 27, 2012

Thank you for your message and your comments, our team is happy to know that you had a nice stay at Heure Bleue Palais.
Our room maids and maintenance staff are doing their utmost to ensure that cleanliness is is irreproachable but I will ensure that their cleaning utensils are also impeccable. I regret that you have had this feeling of abandonment of the English language as we translated the restaurant menu, the breakfast and the restaurant's terrace. It is true that the room service menu is not yet translated but we will do so immediately. For television, you're also right, we are working on a complete renovation of our park broadcasting.

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Reviewed October 21, 2012

After 6 nights in hectic Marrakech we were delighted to enter the tranquility of L'Heure Bleue Plais. Our suites were divine and had their own fireplace, which we took advantage of in the evening as the weather cooled. We ate in the hotel restaurant 2 nights out of 3 and the food was some of the best we experienced in Morocco. The service was very attentive, and the atmosphere of the restaurant very relaxing in the plush surroundings. We were disappointed that the wind kept out time sunbathing in the luxurious rooftop for much of our stay, although we were blessed with one full day laying in the sun and being spoiled by the fabulous staff. I had a massage at the Spa and left half way through as the girl had no idea what she was doing and I ended up feeling much worse when I left. This was really disappointing as it was something I'd been looking forward to all day. That aside, we would thoroughly recommend this luxurious property and have to say being there made our stay in Essaouira.

Room Tip: We had a suite on 3rd floor. There were no views to speak of and no balconies, but the rooms were b...
  • Stayed: October 2012, traveled with friends
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Thank Toni_c_gardner
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
f_laustriat, General Manager at L'Heure Bleue Palais, responded to this reviewResponded October 27, 2012

Your message compliments affects us a lot, I am also disappointed that the spa treatment has not responded to your expectations because our staff are regularly trained with a great brand of Marrakech to innovate and improve overall care. I will personally ensure that improvements be made in the service if it is needed.

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Reviewed October 5, 2012

We chose this hotel through a travel agent and stayed here for 4 nights. The hotel staff were courteous and helpful and the Riad/French colonial style is wonderful, making it seem a true oasis of calm in the bustle of the medina. However standards did not meet our expectations for a 5 star hotel. The hotel has fresh air ventilation rather than air-conditioning, contrary to our understanding and that of many other reviewers. We stayed in room 24 where the airflow was woefully inadequate meaning a lost night's sleep as it was so stuffy and when we raised this with the hotel staff in the morning they said it was working properly. After assuring them it was not they said it would be fixed by the time we returned later that day; it was not and we had to again raise it with reception. We were then moved to room where it was working more efficiently. I notice that there is a management response to an earlier comment saying that air-conditioning is not necessary here because the climate does not justify it. This seems a very complacent attitude for a luxury hotel, and in our experience a totally inaccurate view.
There were a number of details about the room which also did not meet expectations for a hotel at this level. There was a shower head in the bath but no hook to hang it and no proper shower cubicle or similar. The entrance to the bath was through a narrow opening in room 24 with no grab handles and was precarious to say the least. The opening to room 18 was better but you could not reach the bath plug from outside the bath! There was damp on the walls around the bath. There was no hair dryer available so had to request this. It was claimed there was Wifi in all rooms, but is only in reception.
There were shortfalls in other areas too. There was inconsistent service at breakfast, either not getting orders or receiving orders not asked for. The hotel restaurant was very stuffy and had a strange smell lurking and at 170 Dirhams (£13) for a bowl of Gazpacho very expensive. This was the only restaurant on site. The location is good as right in the Medina and there are some other excellent restaurants outside the hotel.

  • Stayed: October 2012, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank Linda W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
f_laustriat, General Manager at L'Heure Bleue Palais, responded to this reviewResponded October 19, 2012

First of all, we should thank you for choosing our property, and for sharing your comments with us.

Actually, we only have fresh air ventilation in the hotel and it is true that we do not need air conditioning in Essaouira and especially in a riad because it is never hot in Essaouira (the wind city).

Essaouira is surrounded by the sea from three sides, thing that explain damp on the wall, smell in the restaurant, we admit it but we also should inform you that we do weekly deep cleanings and we repairs all damage caused by the moisture.

The shower hook could not be installed because we cannot break the marble and the bath plug is just behind the door.

We have wi-fi in all hotel area and our breakfast is very consistent, we even receive a lot of good comments about our breakfast which is included in the room fare.

Please be informed that our vegetables and fruits are grown in our own organic garden. Our chickens and roosters are feed by figs and corn which justify our rates.

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about L'Heure Bleue Palais

Address: 2 Rue Ibn Batouta | Bab Marrakech, Essaouira 44000, Morocco
Location: Morocco > Marrakech-Tensift-El Haouz Region > Essaouira
Amenities:
Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#3 Spa Hotel in Essaouira
#3 Luxury Hotel in Essaouira
#11 Family Hotel in Essaouira
#23 Romantic Hotel in Essaouira
Price Range: $166 - $376 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — L'Heure Bleue Palais 4*
Number of rooms: 33
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
A masterpiece of the Essaouira medina...this palace of marvels lies in the heart of this town loved by artists and aventurers alike. The panoramic outdoor pool on the terrasse overlopks the medina and the ocean. the cuisine offers a subtle blend of french and Moroccan influences ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
l`Heure Bleue Palais And Spa
l`Heure Bleue Palais Hotel Essaouira
l Heure Bleue Palais Essaouira

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