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“A joyful home cleverly disguised as a top notch hotel...”
Review of Dar Gabriel

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Dar Gabriel
Ranked #12 of 23 Hotels in Chefchaouen
Certificate of Excellence
Portland, Oregon
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“A joyful home cleverly disguised as a top notch hotel...”
Reviewed July 5, 2011

Considering that mere centuries ago invaders passing through the gates of Chefchaouen could meet a swift end after becoming lost in the labyrinth of alleyways therein, it was a comforting thing to have found Dar Gabriel in close proximity to Bab Souk, requiring no engagement with said labyrinth whilst toting a heavy pack nor bow-and-arrow wielding residents. These relieving facts at the end of a chaotic ride out Tangiers and through the city upon arrival cannot be overstated if one is keen to get a holiday started on the right foot. We were greeted at the door of the place by the lovely daughter of the hotels manager, the equally charming Ben Salaam. Along with his wife and children, Ben made my friend and I feel as if we were family, never failing to ask how he might make our trip better or our stay more enjoyable.

Upon entering the hotel one is greeted by the elegant but simple lobby with stunning Moroccan rugs, heavy wooden doors, lounges surrounding, and cascading natural light coming through the atrium running down the middle of the building. A Moroccan tent covers a direct view to the sky as you gaze up through the atrium but the affects of the air and light coming through prove to make the already dazzling colors and openness of the hotel that much more so. Ascending the stairs on each side of the lobby cutting back continuously on themselves and somehow contributing to the quaint and homey feel of the place you come to each floor and can look across the atrium at rooms that are each as unique as the place itself. Lounges on every level act as a great place to relax outside of your room and contribute to the communal feel that the managing family encourages. Two rooms standing alone on the upper level seemed to be the most desirable according to their proximity to the rooftop terrace overlooking the city. From this vantage point one can take in the setting sun as the call to prayer floats from the mosques in the city as well as across the valley. An equally wondrous spot to find oneself as the sun peaks through two ridges in the mountains above the city.

The rooms on this level are colorful, cozy, and complete with everything that one needs in a room with little in the way of frills. The bathroom is much the same with everything one needs and nothing they don't. The easy going nature of the town coupled with just the right amount of distance between the surprisingly bustling nightlife of the modern part of the city and the hotel makes for a quiet and restful place to lay down. Another fact which can't be overstated as a day of bargaining and hoofing it around the city will leave anyone longing for the tranquility found in these rooms.

The complimentary breakfast and the possibility of an authentic Moroccan dinner prepared for a small fee by the host family is one of the better parts of staying in this place. The dining lounge is adjacent to the lobby and offers a beautiful setting for either of these meals.

It would be nearly impossible to find anything that detracted from my stay throughout the 3 days in Dar Gabriel and many more things that contributed to my joy in small ways at having found such a place a place as this. I will certainly be back and couldn't encourage others enough to make the trip to Chaouen that much better by staying here.

  • Stayed May 2011, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
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Helpful?
2 Thank Reginald_St_Croix
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
dargabriel, Owner at Dar Gabriel, responded to this review, July 14, 2011
Hello, Penny here, owner of Dar Gabriel. thank you so much for your wonderful words about Bensalam and his family, it means a great deal, I will make sure that Salma (his daughter) sees it.
M
Thanks again and happy travels.
Penny Hogg
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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231 reviews from our community

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English first
Pietermaritzburg, South Africa
Level 3 Contributor
10 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed June 3, 2011

All the positive reviews were spot on about this little hotel. It probably costs a bit more that some other Chefchoauen hotels, but it is right in the medina and offers a wonderful oasis of calm. The hospitality is wonderful, and the setting is just gorgeous! It's well worth the trip and offers excellent value for money!

  • Stayed May 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank scottc177
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level 1 Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed May 29, 2011

we felt really welcome immediately, ben and his family are so awesome!! he notice at the arrival that was my birthday and he suggested us the best place in chaouen to go to eat but finally we discovered that dar gabriel's kitchen was even better (definitely the best and the cheapest dinner we had during all the trip!) The room was great and the view from the terrace was amazing. At least we can say that the dar gabriel's time we had was the best one of the whole trip. I know that looks like i'm the owner of that riad but unfortunately i'm not :D

  • Stayed May 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Lorenzo C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Edmonton, Canada
Level 3 Contributor
19 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
Reviewed May 9, 2011

We didnt stay here, but it was recomended we come here for dinner.
The meal was fabulous! The food tasted great, the service was excellent and the price can't be beat. Must make a reservation in advance.

  • Stayed May 2011
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Beachbumandbumette
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Chicago
Level 3 Contributor
14 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 24 helpful votes
Reviewed March 29, 2011

We recently stayed in Chefchouen for one night, found it to be kind of a sleepy boring town. Really disappointed in the shopping - everything is dusty, cheap and outdated, nothing like Marrakech! However, it's a pretty quaint town with beautiful blue & white walls and near the mountains if your looking to do some nature excursions and escape the hustle bustle of larger city. Pretty safe to walk around solo, although we met one American guy who was harassed to purchase drugs based on his appearance.

Dar Gabriel is a basic no frills hotel. It's cheap, it's clean, it does the job but not really a true "riad" experience, we were not offered tea when we arrived and had to carry our own bags up to the room. The rooms are quaint and there is a pretty rooftop to check out the views.

The beds are small yet comfy. The bathroom is teeny-tiny and has NO DOOR - this proves to be very awkward if your staying with another person! The toilet is also right next to the shower, with no barrier, basically a drain and faucet/shower head so not very convenient at all. It's freezing here at night so bundle up, there is a heater but it didn't seem to be doing much but the blankets did the job.

  • Stayed March 2011, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank AM6143
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Madrid, Spain
Level 4 Contributor
39 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 26 helpful votes
Reviewed March 21, 2011

loved the rooms and the layout, this riad style hotel with rooms surrounding an interior patio.
we stayed on the top-terrace-floor with views to the whole town and surrounding mountains. loved it.
the staff were great, we enjoyed a wonderful morrocan breakfast and enjoyed a great conversation with the manager (Ben).
we look forward to returning to this beautiful place and will certainly stay at Dar Gabriel.

  • Stayed March 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank luchg
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sydney, Australia
Level 1 Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed January 21, 2011

We had a wonderful time. This blue medieval city is extremely attractive and unique. The Hotel is situated right in the middle of the old walled city. It is charming with artisan brickwork, tile work, rugs, carpets and tapestries. The attentiveness to our comfort and warmth from Manager Ben Salam was outstanding. The meals prepared by his wife were fantastic. Authentic delicious Moroccan cuisine. The views are uplifting. The hotel has a wonderful rooftop relaxation area to take in the sun and gaze at the mountains. A brilliant holiday in a lovely little boutique hotel. Thoroughly recommended.

  • Stayed January 2011, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Richard D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Dar Gabriel

Property: Dar Gabriel
Address: Bab souk | Derb El kadi Benq Maimoum souk bad souk gate number 6, Chefchaouen 91000, Morocco
Location: Morocco > Tangier-Tetouan Region > Chefchaouen
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Beverage Selection Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Suites Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #12 of 23 Hotels in Chefchaouen
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Number of rooms: 7
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Dar Gabriel is a beautifully restored boutique riad hotel in Chefchaouen, northern Morocco, with seven bedrooms all en-suite. Downstairs is a sitting room heated by a wood burning stove, a restaurant kitchen, and intimate dining room. There are four bedrooms on the middle floor, roof terraces, three more bedrooms with kitchen and chill out space at roof level. Great views across medina and the river valley, with the Rif mountains behind. ... more   less 
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