Staying in a hotel in the heart of the city has its perks. It is a great way to get acquainted with the vibrant culture of the locals, everything we need is within our reach, we have plenty of options for food, and a lot more. But what if the purpose of our trip is to get away from people a little bit, to reconnect with our selves, and to discover how different nature is far away from where we grew up? In this article, I will introduce you to three hotels in Morocco that will help you find peacefulness within.
I come from the north of Morocco which is mostly associated with the crystal clear beaches on both the Mediterranean and Atlantic sides. Locals and tourists come in numbers every summer to enjoy the sun and the golden sands. During the rest of the year, the weather is always great for long hikes especially in the areas surrounding Chefchaouen. I personally love to hike around there. I even reached one of the highest peaks, Jbel El Karaa which is 7083 ft high. However, a lot of people agree that the real deal in the north are the waterfalls in Akchour. From spending cool evenings around a campfire sipping on sweet warm mint tea to enjoying the water games and jumping from high rocks into ice cold waters, Akchour always offers some of the most fun and raw experiences in the country.
What is even more interesting in Akchour is L’Ermitage which is a gorgeous hotel resort located in the depth of the waterfalls. The hotel stands majestically in the middle of the mountains. It is surrounded by flowing rivers from all sides. The views from the chalets are breathtaking. Mountains and trees literally stretch as far as the eyes can see. When we speak of tranquility, Akchour is one of the calmest spaces in Morocco. The sound of the birds chirping and the water flowing will forever be engraved in your memory. The atmosphere is perfect for the yoga classes the hotel offers. Summers in Morocco are hot, but the magnificent trees and the shiny waters in the area keep the environment perfectly cool for romantic walks around the hotel. The wood style gives the chalets and suits a classic cabin-in-the-woods sensation. My personal favorite is suite Al-Borj with its rocky cave-like walls, big glass windows and beautiful panoramic views. In addition to Yoga classes, the hotel offers a variety of other experiences. You can hike the mountains with the hotel’s guides all the way up to God’s Bridge (Cool name, right?) God’s bridge is a natural formation of rocks that unites two cliffs in an extraordinary way. Akchour is one of the most fascinating places in Morocco and L’Ermitage completes it in the most beautiful way.
The next place is Riad Jnane Alia which is located a few minutes outside the great city of Marrakesh. This resort is built in the traditional Moroccan style. It features beautiful tiles and furniture. There’s also a modern touch that complements the design. Riad Jnane Alia can function as an escape from the crowdedness and noise of the city much like the hotel we discussed earlier, but the tranquility offered by this resort is of a completely different nature. The dry hot whether of Marrakesh has almost nothing in common with the humid and fresh atmosphere in the north. These two places are great examples of the diversity of climate in the North African country. The steady hot air in Marrakesh feels just like a wild sauna. It is perfect for calm nights at the pool gazing at the bright stars in Marrakesh’s sky. The Riad has two big pools and a beautiful authentic Moroccan style spa. The traditional Hammam in Jnan Alia is equipped with organic and natural products that cleanse the body from toxins with the help of the professional masseuses. What is also interesting about this place is its restaurant which combines traditional Moroccan food with European influences. One of their best additions is their Quinoa based bread which allows people with Celiac disease to enjoy the delicious local cuisine. I’m sure those who have tried Moroccan food are familiar with how essential bread is to the Moroccan diet. For these reasons, Riad Jnane Alia can guarantee a once in a life experience.
Last but not least, I shouldn’t miss telling you about Villa Mabrouka which used to belong to Yves Saint Laurent, the prominent 20th century French designer. Villa Mabrouka is located high above the Bay of Tangier. It has a dazzling view of Gibraltar. Its unique and picturesque design captures the cosmopolitanism of the city whose history goes back to the 10th century BC when it was established as a Phoenician colony. Tangier has been targeted by several empires ever since, and that’s how it became one of the most diverse places in the world. Villa Mabrouka is literally sitting on layers of civilizations. My favorite part about the villa is the garden which contains a variety of rare Mediterranean species of plants, flowers, and trees. The garden has heavenly vibes which are perfectly complemented by the interior design of the villa and its fine mixture of European, Moroccan, and African artifacts. Its restaurant offers a variety of Mediterranean dishes. Its suites contain private terraces with dazzling views of the sea, the garden, and the coastline of Tangier. Natural light flows within the rooms from the beautifully designed enormous windows. Words simply cannot describe the grandiosity of this architectural wonder, but it can be felt everywhere inside.
I hope you enjoyed the ride. These are three of the calmest and most blissful hotels in Morocco. I wonder which one of them spoke to your soul.
By Hossame Boudaghia
Hossame Boudaghia is a contributing writer for Inclusive Morocco. Born and raised in Tetouan, Morocco. Hossame is a PhD candidate at the University of Abdelmalek Essaadi. He is the Editor-in-Chief of the English version of Afanine Magazine. He currently lives in Queens, New York City where he works as a part-time ESL teacher.