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“Jo w”
Review of Riad Lunetoile

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Riad Lunetoile
Ranked #22 of 180 Essaouira B&B and Inns
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed July 2, 2012

I am so pleased I chose to stay in a Riad when visiting Essaouira. Sue met us upon our arrival, was extrememly helpful and very friendly. The rooms were clean and quiet. Lunetoile is a beautiful Riad with thick stone walls a good view of the sea and a balcony to relax on. Kabira supplies a wonderful breakfast of hot croissants, freshly squeezed orange juice, yogurt and coffee. I loved the fresh rose petals scattered upon the bathroom floor. My daughter and I relaxed and enjoyed our whole Marrocan experience and we will be back.

  • Stayed: June 2012, traveled with family
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Thank Jo W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Lunetoile, Owner at Riad Lunetoile, responded to this reviewResponded July 23, 2012

Thank you Jo W! Nothing like a great riad and and good hospitality....beats an anonymous hotel, in my opinion....and I am always thrilled when guests appreciate all that we offer...it encourages us to go the extra mile! Thanks for taking the time to write....merci from all of us.

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93 - 99 of 269 reviews

Reviewed June 21, 2012

After reading the great reviews we were looking forward to spending 3 nights in a little cosy hotel. Unfortunately, after seeing the room, we immediately made up our mind to change our plans and cancelled one night, actually wanted to cancel two, but it was not possible. The room was clean, but stinky as some big parts of the wall around the window were mouldy!! Apart from that, it was not possible to keep the windows open as there was no system to keep them stable, and they were banging all the time because of the wind. So we had to keep them closed. The whole hotel seemed to be cold and moist. The washed things couldn't get dry until the next day and they were still dripping wet. A suggestion for improvement would be a good ventilation system.
And something else. What I don't like about the owner of the hotel is the fact, that she tries to argue and negate the comments posted here which she doesn't like, writing long pages, criticising opinions of her guests and protecting her image at any price instead of accepting the less positive reviews, learnig something out of them and trying to improve the stndard of the hotel. We are here to express our opinions freely! That is why the platform has been created! And the hotel owners and their staff should draw appropriate conclusions out of them.
Ania and Martin from Austria

  • Stayed: May 2012, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank Anna S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Management response:Responded June 26, 2012

What can I say? At the time of reading such hurtful nonsense, I felt such despair, that I wondered, IF indeed this CAN be true?? Because, WHO, in their right minds, would invent such nonsense? Now, a few days later, and having gone into the "stinky and mouldy" beautiful, large, room number 4, and inspected, and, yes, sniffed, around all windows - there is NO mould and absolutely NO stink at all!! Thank goodness, as I would have been mortified, had there been! And yes, I certainly DO take all comments very seriously...and yes, just as you seem to believe you have the right to say whatever unpleasant untruths you can concoct, thankfully, I too, have the right to respond!
Sadly, it appears that your partner did the booking and when you arrived and without fully, entering the room, nor taking off your backpack, you started to have a heated discussion with your partner! So, what was actually going on? Goodness knows! The fact is that YOUR partner insisted in staying for 2 nights, and cancelling 1. I have no idea where you put your washed clothes to dry, but I do not think that it is the fault of Lunetoile, if you wash your clothes and leave them inside to dry! Altogether, a woman very unhappy in her skin! It always amazes me how we can have so many, thankfully, glowing responses...and then these bitter ones! I have come to the decision that it all depends on how happy the individual is! This is reflective of them..not LUNETOILE. Any constructive criticism, primarily, ought to be given to us, as we ask you daily, if all is well etc....and only then written up on such a forum, as this, if one is indeed not given the service and quality as advertised.

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Reviewed June 11, 2012

We had a lovely stay here. Staff were very friendly and helpful. The rooms very lovely and a range of rooms to choose from depending on what you're looking for. Would highly recommend. It was also very easy to find.

Room Tip: They have range of rooms from a double to two singles to a large suite and one which had a private b...
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  • Stayed: April 2012, traveled with friends
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Thank Sarah C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Lunetoile, Propriétaire at Riad Lunetoile, responded to this reviewResponded June 15, 2012

Thank you so much for the great write-up, which is also most informative for future guests. Many thanks, and do come back soon..from all of us - at Lunetoile.

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Reviewed June 3, 2012

Here is the obvious statement: there are plenty of riads in Morocco and so many of them look wonderful. If you feel like coming back to a particular one, it probably means you found something special. My wife and I think Riad Lunetoile is special.

It's so many things combined. Lovely, old walls (200 yrs old according to riad's website). Size of the room (#4). Friendliness of the ladies taking care of the riad (especially Kabira). Decorations around the house. Attention to details, such as warm croissants for breakfast, rose petals everywhere, drinking water & fruits waiting for you in the room, tealights around the house in the evening. Moody music from many local CDs you can play if you like. Information with local phone numbers "in case of..." in every room. A visit card of a trusted doctor with his cell phone number, shall you need assistance.

As I mentioned, our room was spacious - actually, it was the biggest room we had during our Morrocan trip. Lots of space for hanging around reading a book, resting etc. if you feel like doing that or if the weather is bad. The size of the room is an important thing for a family with a toddler, so we really enjoyed it. No problem at all with outside sounds - everyone slept well, including our boy (there is a baby cot if you need one). Rooms are clean and French-style breakfast are enough, with lots of coffee and the lovely croissants. Beds are big enough for two (and three in the morning). The kitchen on the 1st floor is quite basic, but having access to a kitchen is a plus per se, considering it's not so common in riads.We were able to prepare some steamed/boiled vegetables for our boy = win!

The terrace has a nice view of the ocean and some furniture to seat and lie down with a book. This is probably something easy to get in many Essaouirian riads - just know they have a nice roof here as well.

Lunetoile is within Medina, but it is not in a very central spot - make arrangements so that one of the ladies comes to meet you when you arrive (by bus, I assume). It's simply easier that way - there is nothing more to it. Once you arrive you will realize that riad is close to everything of interest within the old town. If you have any experience with Fes or Marrakech, you will have ZERO problems finding your way around. This is not a situation where your riad is located in a small dark alley you're afraid to enter or can't find until, like, the third day. No worries. It's easy.

Also: even though the local billard club may seem like a shady place, everybody minds their own business (plus the guy from the CD store is a cool source of information about past Gnaoua festivals).

I think there are two kinds of riads in Morocco - hotel-like and home-like. It really depends on what you look for. The former gives you full attention of the staff and hopefully a spotless place that gets refurbished once in two or three years. The latter makes you feel more relaxed, offering warmth, coziness and probably some history. Lunetoile is by all means a home-like riad (again, 200 years old building). Those who like to be waited on them hand and foot should probably look for a different stay. To get a home-like feeling you need to be given space of your own - therefore, the staff simply needs to stay put, be at your service but minding their own business most of the time. That's Lunetoile. If you have a request, everything will be done with pleasure (Kabira's favorite words seem to be "avec plaisir" - but whatever she does, she seems to do with a smile indeed).

We intend to come back to Essaouira. When we do that, we will be back to Lunetoile as well.

Room Tip: Room #4 is top notch, #3 is smaller but also very nice. The rooms on the lower level (#1 and #2) are...
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  • Stayed: May 2012, traveled with family
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Thank chaetostoma
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Lunetoile, Owner at Riad Lunetoile, responded to this reviewResponded July 23, 2012

WOW!! How nice! So glad that you feel as we do, that, we do try to offer something "SPECIAL".. AND MORE IMPORTANTLY, I am so so thrilled tnat you seem to have addressed ALL aspects!! Thanks you sooo much! This has obviously taken you quite some time to think about, and we all, at Lunetoile, thank you from the bottom of our hearts!! So, so, appreciated....and, as all of my girls say, 'avec plaisir'!

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Reviewed June 3, 2012

Riad Lunetoile was fantastic. Sue and the girls were very accommodating and made us feel completely at home from the start. The room was lovely and big with a lot of space for spreading out and relaxing in. Sue’s recommendations on where to eat were outstanding – we had excellent food all 3 days. Sue and Kabira organised for us to visit a local hammam too which was an experience we’ll never forget. I highly recommend that you do this when in Essaouira (if you are female!). The roof terrace was great, with sunbeds to lie on and catch the sun. Great if the beach is too windy as it’s a real sun trap. I’d highly recommend staying here.

  • Stayed: June 2012, traveled with friends
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Thank RachaelANelson
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Lunetoile, Owner at Riad Lunetoile, responded to this reviewResponded July 23, 2012

Hiii...thanks soooo much for the HIGH Recommendations...so glad tnat you slept well, ate well, relaxed well and had the BEST hammam experience....all the ingredients for a wonderful holiday! Thanks so much....from all of us.

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Reviewed May 17, 2012 via mobile

Pretty riad, beautifully furnished in traditional Moroccan tiles, cushions etc. in location near good restaurants, cafes and souks. You can hear the sea from room 4 and breakfast on the terrace is the perfect way to start the day. Very clean and staff happy to help and meet you from the bus if needed. Felt very safe and comfortable. Will stay again when in Essaouira.

  • Stayed: May 2012
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Thank Toves77
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Lunetoile, Owner at Riad Lunetoile, responded to this reviewResponded July 23, 2012

Thank you...brief and to-the-point...PERFECT! Thanks ypu so much for taking the time to write a review..much appreciated...and you will be very welcome to return....Sue and all of the girls at Lunetoile.

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Reviewed May 9, 2012

Alright, let me preface this my saying we consult trip advisor almost everywhere we go and its mostly right on. All of the review for the other 4 places we stayed in Morocco were to the tee.

Not sure where all these reviews for this riad are coming from, but the actual accommodations, the service we received, and the location were all less than spectacular.

I'll try to be brief. Here are the bullet points:

1) After email contact the owner made me confirm the booking with a credit card. Then once I sent that email with the sensitive information, I never got a reply confirming! I sent 2 follow-up emails and nothing. The day before we were to arrive in Essaouira I had our riad in Marrekech call (there was no number for the riad, only the owner's cell phone number listed) to make sure we were confirmed and I got a song and dance about being in Zimbabwe and the internet and electricity being dreadfully hard to come by. Fair enough, then don't ask me to send my credit card information just before you go. (There were also Zimbabwe annual calendars on the wall from multiple years. This was NOT their first time to Zimbabwe).

2) The location was not very central, way on the far side of the medina. In fact the man with the cart who helped us with our luggage had never heard of it and had to knock on doors and ask 3 or 4 people where it was. Even with the address. Plus, there is an arcade/pool hall directly across the street where the teenage boys stay up until all hours yelling and being loud. Do not plan on sleeping before 1 or 2 am if you are staying in one of the rooms on the front side.

3) We stayed in the grand apartment room with private terrace on the top floor, the most expensive room in the riad. Great, but the wifi didn't reach in our room, the terrace was in poor repair (bench broken, no cushions on sun chairs, empty plastic water bottles, tools left out) and was below our standards for cleanliness. There were and looked to be in the middle of a remodel. In general the whole place looked to be in sore need of a once over spring cleaning (dust/hair in the drawers, towel left on the floor to clean up an apparent leak when we arrived, wires and tools left in the bathroom cabinets)

4) The added amenity of "private kitchen" in the grand apartment was bogus. Yes there is a sink, burner, coffee maker, and fridge. However, the burner did not work, I tried the sink but couldn't get the water to run. The coffee maker probably would have worked, we didn't try. It would have been nice to have a complimentary pouch or two of cheap coffee so we could make our own. The fridge appeared functional.

5) This one is a little nit-picky, but there were was no shampoo/conditioner/shower gel in the bathroom and only very small low-quality bar soap provided. Nor was there a hair dryer. It being frowned-upon for women to go out with wet hair in Morocco would have made this a nice touch. We found these items present in most other nice riads we stayed in Morocco.

6) The room on the floor below was vacant (and looked very nice) and was 15 Euro cheaper per night but when we asked if we could change (we asked immediately after checking in) we were told we had a reservation and confirmed for the expensive room and that that room was not available. IT WAS NEVER OCCUPIED OUR ENTIRE STAY OF 3 DAYS.

7) The two-woman staff we were indifferent to but they never seemed to stay past 5 or 6pm. We were even the only ones there one night in the entire riad. If something were to go wrong or we were to need assistance from 6pm to 6am, we had no local contact information for anyone. This is not a very comforting feeling. Other riads in Morocco had someone on site around the clock.

  • Stayed: April 2012, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank Marvin S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Lunetoile, Owner at Riad Lunetoile, responded to this reviewResponded May 13, 2012

Firstly, I find that veiled, accusation, hurtful and offensive, and one wonders from whence that comes? There will, sadly, always be some people, who are never happy, nor satisfied..but we, at Lunetoile, remain committed to offering the best we possibly can, within the confines of a Guest House.
You did make your booking, 48 hours before due date of arrival. I am normally very prompt with my responses, but, without "making a song and dance", when you called me 24 hours before arrival, I did confirm your booking and explained, apologetically, why I had been unable to respond.
You told me you were arriving the next day at 17.00 by Supratours Bus. The girls were ready to depart at 16.45 to meet you....BUT...you had changed your plans, and took a taxi, and arrived at 16.00hrs...and then took a man with a cart, who apparantly did not know Lunetoile! I am not sure
who is at blame here?? Me? Or the poor cart man?
To say we are not centrally located is extraordinary! We are situated at the top end of the main street in the medina!
As for the boys playing billiards in the billiard room several doors down on the opposite side of the road...NOT directly opposite at all....this place closes at 10pm!
Perhaps the wifi does not reach into the top appartment...I actually have never checked...but certainly it is easily found on either of the other 2 floors. Not a hardship, I would have thought? As for all of the other complaints in para 3....we had no workers there! There is no bench to break! I have spoken to the girls and they say there were never, ever, any tools in the cupboard, nor any leak! How it looked to be in the midle of a remodel is...extraordinary! Dust and hair in the drawers? IF this had been my experience, I would have certainly asked the girl in charge to come upstairs immediately, please, and clean the drawer! But, strangely, nothing was mentioned.
As for our bogus kitchen...yes, everything works...the gas stove works once the gas is turned on, the fridge and the coffee maker work, and the tap does have running water!
There is a hairdryer at Lunetoile...had you mentioned any of these 'annoyances' to Kabira, you would have received the hairdryer, she would have turned the gas tap on, (as perhaps you are unfamiliar to this function), and you would have seen, that the taps do have water.
The room underneath you was indeed available the first night, but, was occupied on your second night...so, again...not entirely factual, that you thought it was vacant the entire 3 nights.
What a sad admission that you were indifferent to our delightful, hard-working, ladies, who try so hard to please! They work from 8am-8pm...never until 5 or 6 pm!
You stayed with us for 3 nights, and NEVER were you the only occupants!
Sadly, there are many inaccuracies in your report....and I am sorry that you did not enjoy your stay..but, the real reason, as to why not, will remain a mystery.
We choose not to have someone on the premises overnight...life in Essaouira is very simple and safe...everyone is given cards with our telephone numbers, in their rooms. Some other riads in which you stayed, in Morocco, may certainly have had guardians...perhaps they deemed this
necessary.

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Additional Information about Riad Lunetoile

Address: 191 Rue Sidi Mohamed Ben Abdullah | Medina, Essaouira 44000, Morocco
Location: Morocco > Marrakech-Tensift-El Haouz Region > Essaouira
Amenities:
Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Kitchenette Room Service Suites Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #22 of 180 B&Bs / Inns in Essaouira
Price Range: $36 - $52 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — Riad Lunetoile 3*
Number of rooms: 5
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Riad Lunetoile, situated in the heart of the Medina, with sea-views from the top terrace and from apartment 5, is the ideal relaxing, comfortable, holiday home / guest-house / B&B, to rent, in Essaouira. Ideal for surfers, individuals, couples or families... our Moroccan hospitality will enthrall you.....so, Submit yourself to a gentle introduction to true Moroccan hospitality, mixed with a little European comfort, and spiced up with a few Indian accessories. Enjoy all, that the Orient, has to offer, whilst still being in Africa!Savour our home-made BISUITS and sip mint tea from our sea-facing, rooftop terrace and listen to the waves of the Atlantic Ocean, crashing onto the rocks, whilst you let yourself drift into the mysteries of this far-away, Arabic, land. ... more   less 
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