Hotel Review: Riad Kheirredine, Marrakech

It was Christmas Day when we arrived in Marrakech after a short flight from Madrid and we were greeted by one of the most amazing sunsets we have seen in recent times. I have never enjoyed deplaning via a stairway but I would not wanted it otherwise this time around. The short walk on the tarmac simply gave me more time to take in the beauty of our first African sunset in the cool breeze, and of course, the smell of jet fuel!`

Fast forward, immediately after clearing customs, we were met by a chauffeur holding a big brown “Riad Kherridine” sign and was promptly led to our vehicle. The journey took approximately half an hour and before we knew it, we were dropped off in front of a school and met by a uniformed staff of the property with a luggage cart (think ancient bull-cart). Yes, there was no porte-cochere to greet us! Very unusual for a luxury property indeed!

We were then escorted through small alleyways, turning left, right, then left, then left, then right again….until we got to the front gate of the property! We felt like we were in the movie, Aladdin! Some 10 minutes later when we arrived at the front gate, we were greeted by another two staff members who escorted us to a living room with comfy sofas and were brought a cold towel and hot Morrocan mint tea. One staff member kept us occupied whilst another processed our documents. Then we were brought to our room and to our surprise, our suitcases were already there! How efficient!

The property was small and intimate but because it was built ages ago (probably when Aladdin was still around), it felt like a maze too, with narrow corners and stairways. Our suite was located on the second floor, and it had like three floors internally!!! It was a tight squeeze into the suite where there was a second bathroom, then a short flight of stairs leads you to a day bed in Arabian décor, another short flight of stairs leads you the bedroom with an adjoining living area and bathroom, and a balcony too!

We had dinner at the hotel on our first night and it was a feast!

When we got back to our room, the attendants have just left after their nightly turn down service. Water, tea, coffee, fresh juice and fresh fruit is available, all day, every day. Laundry is included as well.

The manager, Elena, came to our table at breakfast time to greet and welcome us. Breakfast at the rooftop terrace was quite an experience. We could choose to sit anywhere and they would set up a table for us with crisp white tablecloth and fine silverware to match. Part one was fresh orange juice with an assortment of pastries and bread. Whilst we enjoy that, we would be asked what we would like for Part Two which is eggs and coffee. You can never go hungry whilst staying here, there is always just too much food!

When it was time to head out, we handed in our keys to reception and a staff member was arranged to escort us to walk us all the way to the Medina centre. That was so that we do not get lost in the alleyways (they are perfectly safe by the way). When we insisted on walking ourselves, they would call us on the mobile to check on us every now and then!!! Yes, all guests are given a mobile phone and are told to call the property at any time for whatever help we needed. The phone has date tethering capabilities too so you could also use your own phones to constantly upload your TikTok videos and Facebook photos whilst wandering around Marrakesh.

By the way, tipping at this property is shared so there was no need to tip each and every staff. Just leave whatever you feel like leaving (tipping is not compulsory in this country where it is appreciated, not expected). It would have been a nightmare if it wasn’t this way because there is always three times more staff than there are guests! Every one greets you and offers to help – whether it is carrying your treasures from the souks back to your room or to get you a cold drink of water. They are beyond helpful and beyond friendly. They don’t seem to be performing a job but they are living their passion! No wonder they are constantly number one on TripAdvisor! It was not easy leaving this place, this magical place!

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Andrew is a self-confessed guru when it comes to frequent flyer programmes. He claims that he is more familiar of the terms & conditions than the one who came up with the terms & conditions. His dream is to be able to feast on cookies day and night without getting fat.