This isn’t one of those Riads that I (luckily) stumble upon on a booking site… When I tell my friends that I’m going to Marrakech, at least three of them tell me I need to stay at Riad Farnatchi. And the fourth? “Go to the spa there. And try and see Ahmed.”
I feel like I’ve got a ready-made itinerary, which gets busier when we check into our room and read Riad Farnatchi’s guest guide – a comprehensive round-up of Marrakech’s best restaurants and discovery notes on Moroccan wines (we take the tip on the ‘S’ Siroua Rose).
I can see we’re going to like it here…
THE STYLE EDIT
When it comes to your wardrobe, Marrakech is the place to be bold – think print cover-ups and statement accessories. Match your Riad surroundings in these monochrome Kalmar pieces…
Like many of the best hotels in Marrakech, you’ll find Riad Farnatchi hidden away down a narrow street in the heart of the medina. Once you’re inside the peaceful Riad walls, you literally can’t hear a sound – even from the picturesque rooftop.
It’s the ideal Marrakech medina base, a short walk from Instagrammable hotspots like Le Jardin Secret (https://www.lejardinsecretmarrakech.com) and the Max & Jan concept store (https://www.maxandjan.ma/). During our stay at Riad Farnatchi we don’t take a taxi once because we reach everywhere we want to go walking through the pussycat lined streets (way more fun).
This isn’t the place for wild after-parties. It’s incredibly serene and calm with just the soothing sound of the Riad water features as your background noise – exactly what you want after you’ve just spent a day in the craziness of the medina. Though the hotel is fully booked during our stay, we barely bump into a soul.
On checking into our room, we discover two Djellaba – light traditional tunics – that you’re advised to wear if you want to respectfully roam the ground floor of the Riad in your swimwear and use the communal, decorative pool. It’s an intimate Riad that also feels very maze-like all at the same time. You can enjoy dinner in the candlelit dining room, Maracoc room, poolside bhou, roof terrace, or your room suite.
It’s the kind of room that makes you go wow when you walk in. Each of the 10 luxury suites are decked out differently. Some have private sun terraces or balconies, so it’s worth checking the website to choose the suite you love most/matches your Instagram feed.
Our room, suite five, is huge with a fireside lounge area and marble bathroom. I’m very happy with the double sink situation and roomy shower, stocked with multiple, full-size varieties of Molton Brown shower gels. Sadly I’m not staying long enough to try them all out!
In our part of the Riad, we’re very lucky to have a beautiful, private balcony that looks out onto the rear courtyard. It’s a no brainer that we have our breakfast spread served here in the mornings.
It would be criminal to stay at Riad Farnatchi and not have a hammam or massage in the decadent black and white tiled spa. If I owned a spa, I’d want it to look exactly like this.
As I walk in I overhear a woman on a post-massage high. She’s waxing lyrical about her masseuse, Ahmed. His hands have legendary status but get booked out fast (including my stay), so it’s worth booking ahead if you want to experience his magic touch.