Are you planning of visiting Morocco? Do you have in mind where to stay? Why stay then in a riad for a unique and authentic Moroccan experience. Staying in a riad is something that you have to do when travelling to Morocco.
What Is A Riad?
Riad is a traditional house in Morocco. It is characterised by having an Andalusan-style inner courtyard that contained a fountain or a garden as the central element of the building, normally with two or more storeys. The word riad comes from the Arab word ‘ryad’ which means ‘garden’.
Why Stay In A Riad In Morocco?
There are lots of hotels and sort of accommodations in Morocco from five-star to budget hotels with great amenities but staying in a riad is so Moroccan with a personal touch. Most of the riads are owned by a wealthy Moroccan family such ah as merchants and courtiers. Since riad is small with a limited number of rooms (usually have between 5 and 10 rooms) the service is more personalised and welcoming. The service is much the same as the hotel but a lot quicker when you ask for something to be done.
Most of the riads nestled within the ancient walled city tucked in a narrow historic cobbled street of the old town. Markets, galleries, museums, abound and there is something to discover around every corner.
However, prices of riads are very high compared to hotels and other sorts of accommodations in Morocco. If you are in a tight budget or in backpacking exploring the country all day then a standard hotel accommodation would enough for your needs.
There is a wide array of luxury riads in Morocco for you to choose and here are some of the best-value to stay in this magical city based on my experience.
LA MAISON BLANCHE – TANGEIR
A beautiful place situated at the top of the Kasbah. Once you walk inside the place your eyes will delighted with the beauty of the ornament hand-picked by the owners themselves. The owners Aziz and Pilar spent years in renovating the property and have their eyes on details from a beautiful hand painted ceilings, gorgeous fabrics adorning the walls, antique wood carved doors and classy Moroccan decor. The place is immaculate clean and cozy. They have a nook area where you can spend some time reading books while sipping a glass of their Moroccan mint tea and listening to the sound of the courtyard fountain. The smells of rose petals all over the place are absolutely heavenly.
The riad is small with 9 rooms and each room has its own personality, well decorated, clean and comfortable with a nice tub, hot and cold shower.
My partner and I stay here and was never disappointed. Aziz and Pilar are perfect hosts, very welcoming and helpful to us. Aziz personally served breakfast to his guests with traditional Moroccan breads, pancakes, crepes, pastries all served with freshly made orange juice, coffee , wine ( Moroccan mint tea) and egg omelette. Breakfast can be served in the lobby or in the roof terrace with the panoramic view of Tangier.
- La Maison Blanche don’t have its own restaurant but there are coffee shops and restaurants nearby the place. Breakfast served daily.
- No elevator and there are many stairs leading to the entrance. The place is not advisable for people with mobility problem and for elderly people.
- The neighbourhood is quite noisy at night. You can hear the chattering of the neighbourhood but not really a big problem. It didn’t really bothered us at all. The riad is located in the Kasbah,, where houses are close together and the streets are narrow so expect some noise 🙂
La Maison Blanche was not one of the most stunning riads we stayed during our trip but we had truly a wonderful experience in this place. It was a good stay. The owners and the staff went out of their way to make sure that their guests had everything all they needed. They are certainly exceptional to make sure that each of their guests enjoy their stay in this little gem in Tangier.
http://www.lamaisonblanchetanger.com ( click on this link for more details).
RYAD LINA AND SPA – CHEFCHAUEN
Nestled in the heart of the medina, Lina Ryad and Spa is one of the best place to stay in Chefchauen. Perfect and great location away from the noisy central square. With great comfort, exceptional staff and service especially Ibrahim the front desk manager is truly amazing. He made sure that our stay was enjoyable and fun.
The property offers a full-service spa that you should not missed while staying here. Their Hammam is absolutely worth the price. It has a restaurant and an indoor pool.
The room is big and clean with comfortable bed, minibar and big windows. The bathroom quite outdated and really needs improvement.
The place has a rooftop with panoramic view of the rif mountains and the old medina.
I really like this place because the service and hospitality of the staff are exceptional.
- There is no elevator and too many steps to climb. Not advisable for people with mobility problem and elderly people.
- The hotel is not accessible for cars. The place is located in the narrow hilly streets of the blue city. Quite a long walk from the main road to Ryad Lina and Spa. If you have lots of luggage you need to tell the riad that you need a porter to help you with your luggage.
- Breakfast and dinner served in the reception area on low coffee table. I am an Asian, my legs are short so I really don’t mind hehe..but my partner is a tall, long-legged American guy. Sitting in a low chair is quite uncomfortable for him.
- The place is close to the central and surrounded with stores and souvenirs shops
- There is a spa and indoor pool
- Ibrahim made sure that he treated us like a king and he certainly did during our stay.
- Best service and hospitality.
http://www.linaryad.com ( click on this link for more details).
RYAD KNIZA – MARRAKECH
Set in an 18th-century traditional, Moroccan building, this luxuries riad is located along the alleys of the old medina of Marrakech. The property has been restored by one of the most renowned antiques dealer in the city. The property is absolutely stunning. The moment you step inside you will mesmerised by the magical charm of the place. The chirping of the birds, buzzing of the bees in the fountain area, the sweet smells of roses scattered all over ohhhh the place are truly heavenly.
Ryad Kniza is an oasis of calmness, truly beautiful and relaxing place to stay after a long and tiring road trip from Fes to Marrakech. It is a masterpiece of traditional artisanal handwork ranging from carved stucco walls, hand-painted beams, mosaic fountains, hand-embroidered silk curtains, antique furniture, rare bedouin jewelry, antique books. The entire place is tastefully decorated immaculately.
Breakfast served in the lounge area or in the roof top with the 360 degree panoramic view of the Atlas Mountains.
Food served in their authentic Moroccan set-up restaurant are amazing , served with such elegance.
Many celebrities have been in this place.
- No elevator, too many steps. If you are going to book tell them ahead to reserve the room for you downstairs. There are only two rooms available downstairs. The other room is quite small perfect for couple.
AN OASIS OF CALMNESS , PEACE AND TRANQUILITY. I highly recommend this place.
http://www.riadkniza.com ( click on this link for more details).
RIAD FES- RELAIS & CHATEAUX FES, MOROCCO – CHARMING RIAD
https://travelistajournal.wordpress.com/2016/09/25/riad-fes-relais-chateaux-fes-morocco/ ( click on this link)
http://www.riadfes.com ( click on this link for more details).
Riad is not a budget place to stay but the service if not better is comparable to a five-star hotels.
DISCLAIMER: All my reviews, thoughts, opinions here are my own and based on my experience. I am not affiliated with any of the riads mentioned on my blog nor I endorse them and they do not endorse me. I am not paid for my reviews.