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Rear aspect
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Salon to lightwell
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10ft Plunge pool
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1st floor bedroom
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Ground floor salon
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2nd floor balcony view
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Ground floor
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1st floor salon
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2nd floor bedroom
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Door lintel
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2nd floor terrace
Unique Properties Worldwide

Riad des Palmiers


Essaouira, Marrakech-Essaouira,


  One-off feature  
  Riad des Palmiers is a beautiful riad situated just within the city walls in what was originally the Algerian Quarter of the medina, overlooking not only the medina but also the esplanade and beach and, beyond, both the fishing port and the old island prison of Mogador.  
  Property Info  
  Accommodation Type: Riad  
  Property Setting: Near the Sea / Beachfront / Town / Urban  
  Holiday Type: Relaxing / Night life / Family / Sports & activity / Culture  
  Bedrooms: 6  
  Guests: 12  
  Catering: self-catering  
  General Info  
  This luminous villa has considerable style and period charm. Offering flexible accommodation to suit groups or families up to 12 people, couples or individuals, the house can be rented either in its entirety, by the apartment (of which there are 3 laid out over 3 floors), or by particular room. Almost unique for a riad in the medina, it not only abuts the Medina walls and has uninterrupted views to the beach and the bay, but it also has a garden with its own mature palm trees and a sizeable plunge pool which is fed from the riad’s own private well. The villa has been meticulously renovated to retain as many of its original features as possible and it is decorated throughout with a mix of fabrics and antique furniture and artefacts sourced not only from the souks and markets of the region but also from the wider Islamic world.  
  Details on the area surrounding the property/accommodation  
  As a visitor, you may be there simply for the beautiful weather, scenery, and laid-back atmosphere. But scratch the surface and you will find a bustling city going about its business independently of the tourist trade. Indeed, Essaouira has plenty to do if you decide to seek it out, centered largely around the city’s wonderful and gregarious people. There are plenty of activities on offer, both cultural and sporting, including windsurfing and kitesurfing, quadbiking, camel and horseriding, golf and cookery courses. Spend time trawling the medina, buy fresh food in the souk, lunch in some fabulous restaurants, stroll around the battlements of the northern ramparts, visit the town’s woodworkers, pop in to some art galleries; something for everyone here! Once in Essaouira, most places can be easily reached on foot. The Medina itself can be traversed in about 20 minutes.  
  Getting there & away/local amenities  
  Getting There: Essaouira is equidistant from both Marrakech and Agadir International Airports and travel time by car / taxi is 2½ hours. There are two methods of travelling from these airports: a taxi, or a bus. Presently the cost of a 'Grand Taxi' which seats five is 750 dirhams (approx £60.00). There are buses from both cities at approx. 60dhs per person. The following airlines fly to Marrakech and / or Agadir from the UK: Royal Air Maroc / EasyJet / Thomson / Ryanair. After booking, we’ll send you more detailed instructions.  
  Nearest airports: Marrakech or Agadir 2.5 hours drive  
  Car Hire: Optional  
  Nearest restaurant: Lots within walking distance  
  Nearest beach: A few minutes walk  
  Nearest shop: Lots within walking distance  
  Nearest market: A few minutes walk  
  More info Enquiry info
  Name Diane Thomas
  Contact Phone No. +44 (0)20 8788 0701
  Accommodation details
  Activities Nearby Beach within 30km / Beach within walking distance / Courses Available / Cycling / Fishing / Golf within 30km / Horse Riding / Walking / Watersports  
  Interior Facilities Cot / Highchair / Internet Access / Linen provided / Maid Service / Washing Machine  
  Interior Details The riad can be rented as a whole house or by the apartment. All 3 apartments sleep up to 4 people. Each apartment comprises 2 double bedrooms with ensuite shower or bathroom and fully fitted kitchen; in addition, the 1st and ground floors have a salon, whereas the 2nd floor has a private sunbathing terrace. The 2nd floor apartment can also be let on a room-only basis with shared use of the kitchen and sun terrace. Daily maid service is provided, and meals can also be prepared by arrangement; however, breakfast is not normally included. The whole riad can be rented for a per person /week price, based on minimum of 6 people staying or for a per day price (minimum rental 3 days).  
  Exterior Facilities Balcony / Courtyard / Garden / Swimming Pool / Terrace  
  Exterior Details There is a large roof terrace on the top floor available to all, and a garden with a 10 sq.metre plunge pool (which is very unusual for Essaouira and the only one in the Medina). Please note the garden can be accessed by the ground and 1st floor apartments, but not the 2nd.  
  Further Details Essaouira is generally acclaimed as one of the most enchanting spots along Morocco's Atlantic coast. It enjoys this status because of a unique combination of factors: its sunny and temperate climate which hardly varies from one month to the next, the generosity and warmth of its inhabitants, its inheritance of treasures both architectural and cultural and, most crucially, the liberal and tolerant atmosphere which so strongly characterises the mood of its streets. Here, fishermen, locals, tourists especially Moroccan and European, merchants, craftsmen, musicians, and artists of all kinds come to share their work, perspectives and amity. Essaouira enjoys sun all year round – on average, 320 days of the year to be precise. The sea temperature is also fairly constant, going from 16ºC in January to 20ºC in late summer. Between November and March however, it can get rather nippy at night, particularly if there are clear skies, and between May and September the wind can get quite strong. Please note that it can be windy at any time of the year, so it is therefore a good idea to take a fleece jacket or similar.  
  Conditions of
When the riad is rented in its entirety, there is a £100 breakages deposit which is payable with the final rental payment or on arrival. This will be refunded (subject to no damages) upon your departure. In the event of a cancellation, the following amounts are forfeit, depending on the number of days’ notice given: 30 days or more = 100% of deposit. 14 days - 30 days = 50% booking. 0 days – 14 days = 100% booking. The house is fully equipped and includes towels and bedlinen. A limited number of beach towels are provided, but guests are asked to bring their own if frequent trips to the beach are envisaged. We regret a laundry service cannot be provided except when guests are staying for more than a week. Hairdryers are not supplied, nor are adapter plugs for UK appliances.  
  Other Information Babysitting available / Sea View / Child Friendly / Cook available / Ideal for honeymoons / Short breaks available / Suitable for events  
  What visitors have said about Riad des Palmiers
Nous sommes ravis d'avoir pu profiter durant un mois de tout le confort de cette grande et belle maison idéalement située et dont le patio est un véritable écrin de paradis: à noter la présence d'un bassin,ce qui est assez exceptionnel à Essaouira ! De plus, les services de Fouzéa qui s'occupe de la maison ( inclus dans la location de la maison) sont un vrai plus pour passer des vacances reposantes.
F.M.,  Paris 

I stayed at the Riad des Palmiers with friends and our children and we had the whole place to ourselves, which was great. Service was friendly and good. The Riad is comfortable, and relaxing to be in; it has lots of space and charm. We were able to relax in the lower garden as well as sun bathe on the terraces. It's very centrally located for shops and amenities, which was great for the 'breakfast run' for fresh bread, pastries and coffee; it's also close to the beach. I would definitely go back again. The owner of the Riad, Diane, is wonderful and she helped enormously in making my complicated travel arrangements go as smoothly as possible. Thanks, again, Diane.
A.V.,  Gloucester 

From the booking stage to our departure we could not have asked for more. Diane our contact made sure everything was looked after from maps, transfers, eating out listing... to Abdul and Faouzia who were professional, friendly and discreet. The place is right in the medina and has all you need with kitchenette, sunroof, plunge pool...The deco is amazing. We couldn't fault anything! We had the honour of having Faouzia cooking for us on our last night and it was by far the best meal we had during our holidays so I hightly recommend that! Abdul was so kind to get up at dawn to make sure taxi was there and all was fine on our departure. We were meant to spend 1 night in Marrakech but after the experience we were having there we decided not to go anywhere! I have been in the hotel industry for over 10 years and honestly I have no problem recommending this place. Again thanks to Diane, Abdul and Faouzia!
K.G.,  Galway 

This riad is stunning. Everything is done to such high spec, and the interiors are simple but classy. It's a wonderful place to stay, and each floor has access to somewhere you can relax and sunbathe. There's so much space on each floor so given that I think it's excellent value.
K.J.,  London 

We stayed with another family (5 children in all ranging from 8 to 13 in age). The accommodation was fantastic. Ample space for everyone; gorgeous rooms, all tastefully decorated and with beautiful en suite facilities. There were basic kitchen facilities which we didn't need to use much because of the great food on offer in Essouira. On one day the maid cooked us at our request an absolutely delicious tagine. The plunge pool is perfect for the kids to occupy themselves in and cool off. The balconies offer fabulous views of the sea and the port. Abdul, the house manager, who greeted us on our arrival and conveyed us safely to the Riad was locally and was readily available to assist if needed - although he wasn't really because everything was so good and so easy. This Riad is a superb place to base yourself in if visiting Essaouira; comfortable, elegant and well located for the souks etc.
N.T.,  London 

"Very Elle Decor!” I don't even read this magazine, but that's what I thought of when I saw the inside of Riad des Palmiers! I think it was the marvelous eclectic furnishings of this lovely riad; painted antique furniture alongside contemporary metal bedstands; shiny brass hardware alongside antique deadbolts, old stained glass windows fitted with modern shutters, a great mix of vintage and new. And the whole place filled with beautiful and unusual tilework, We had the entire second floor, 2 bedrooms w/bath and/or shower, a nice kitchen and a sitting room and access (via spiral staircase) to the little pool and patio area. We ate breakfast there one day, but most of the time it was being used by the first floor tenants. Abdul met us at the Supratours bus station as promised and he was charming. We were told that he spoke only French, and were happy and relieved to find out that he also spoke Arabic. My son's girlfriend speaks Arabic, so was able to communicate for us. He walked us to the riad, not too far into the Medina, which was nice, gave us the tour and the keys and was off. We were in Essaouira during the Gnaoua Music Festival, so the town was packed with people. And sad to say I was not as vigilant as I should have been and my camera got stolen. I had been warned about the possibility of pickpockets, but am too trustworthy I guess. Other than that (and the very loud seagulls!) the town was easy to navigate and although windy, the breeze kept things cooler. The beach was great (with camels you could ride-touristy but fun to see) and we had some of the best food our our trip at ELIZIR, which lucky for us was just a stone's throw from our riad. Thanks Diane for all your help and to Abdul and Fouzia-Shukran/Thank You!
C.B.,  Iowa 

We stayed in the ground floor appartment and so had direct access to the garden, which was very pretty and had plenty of furniture to laze around on and eat breakfast. We didn't discover the tortoises until about the third day, but they provided much amusement after that! The pool wasn't full when we arrived but an email to the owner had it sorted immediately and it was nice to have a plunge in the late afternoon. The riad is beautifully furnished and has everything you need for a comfortable stay. It is built into the medina wall, down a little alley and is totally peaceful - next door were having some building work done but it didn't really disturb us. If you wanted to cook for yourselves, the kitchen was well equipped and shopping in the local markets is fun and dirt cheap. Don't miss the olives! After Marrakesh, Essaouira was a joy! The sea breeze and sunshine and the relaxed friendly people. We had the added bonus of a music festival - we didn't know about it beforehand but enjoyed three or four excellent concerts. Our favourite bits were walking around the port and the ramparts, shopping in the markets, coffees and mint teas in the square, eating at Les Alizes and La Layounne restaurants and breakfasts of fresh croissants and freshly squeazed orange juice in the garden of Les Palmiers. Didn't want to come home!
C.J.,  Yorkshire 

Just got back from 10 days Essaouria at the Palmier and I crave to be there right now! Beautiful restored home with all the right details, helpful house manager, a quiet retreat that was heavenly. I can still close my eyes and hear the gulls and the ocean, sigh. Ended up forgoing Marrakech to stay here I loved it so much. Highly recommend!
D.O.,  San Francisco 

Riad des Palmiers is a truly charming place to stay in a quiet yet still very central location. We had a whole floor to ourselves, open at one end with a large balcony looking out to the sea. Accommodation was spacious, simple but with some lovely decorative features. We had a large bathroom with plenty of hot water and a very well equipped kitchen which was cleaned and tidied for us. We left with a very strong sense of all staff servicing the riad with enormous care, friendliness and attention to detail. Booking and transfer arrangements could not have been more straightforward. I would definitely recommend the riad, both for itself and for the fact that Essaouira is such a fun and laid back place to hang out. We very much look forward to returning.
C.R.,  London 

Top notch Riad "We returned to Essaouira for the 2nd time - already in love with the town, so the Riad was the only unknown. The house is wonderful - a brilliant restoration job with lots of individual details. The garden and plunge pool were a unique benefit (very unusual in an Essaourian riad) and it was great to have the ability to relax in our own oasis of tranquility after a morning wandering around the souqs. The children loved the tortoises. The house was kept beautifully clean by Fouzia with sheets cleaned mid week and Abdul was on hand any time we needed any help. I really can't praise the riad enough and we hope very much to return. "

"Superb accommodation, beyond all expectaion.” After spending three days in Marrakesh, this riad offered a haven of peace. The accommodation was absolutely fabulous, recently refurbished in tradditional Morrocan style and filled with beautiful vintage furniture and fittings, the owner has obviously put a lot of time and effort into the riad and this shows. We spent 3 nights in the ground floor accommodation which was extremely roomy and consisted of 2 bathrooms, a garden and use of a top floor roof terrace, a kitchen, 2 bedrooms and a salon. Highly reccommended
Anon,  Manchester 

"My compulsion to escape the horror that is Christmas brought me once again to Essaouria, making this my 5th visit. Why do I keep returning? Essaouria has the right balance between relaxation - a long, part-duney beach; toasty winter sunshine; low-hassle-locals - and historic and cultural interest. After five visits the latter is allowed to take a back seat, or rather a sun lounger. Which is where I spent most of a cloud-free 2 week spell over Christmas and New Year. This sun lounger was situated on a lovely tiled terrace, at the top of a charming Riad, over looking the sea. I've stayed at a few Riads in the town by now, and this is one I would certainly recommend to anyone who wants to be looked after, but also left alone to do your own thing. Riads, especially those close to the sea, can get very chilly at night, and feel very damp. Not this one. It's on the Western side, which is the driest, and whilst it has sea views, it's not so close as to be damp. Another bonus (this will sound odd to anyone who hasn't had this happen to them), being a way back from the sea means fewer seagulls. The squawk of these beasts is one of the sounds of the town; preventing them dive bombing your breakfast to steal your bread or butter is one of the sports that usually grace terrace top dining of a morning. They are pretty brazen, so it's nice not to have to keep one eye on the skies while you tuck into the morning delights. Breakfast is not included at this riad, but there is a little kitchen where you can prepare coffee, and buying fresh bread every day became one of the rituals of riad living. The riad has recently been converted from an old house, so is in very good decorative order. You're looked after by a lovely lady who cleans and smiles. There is even a small plunge pool attached to two of the apartments in a sweet palm-fringed garden, haunted by a family of tortoises. The riad is situated by a bustling area where the locals shop, but is tranquil once you shut the heavy door on the noise of the world outside. The sea is there to stare at during the day; the stars at night. Whilst it's usually too cold to sit out on the terrace in winter at riads closer to the sea, here you can. I was really impressed by the quality of the rooms for the money. It's a great place to stay for anyone's first trip to this amazing town.
R.M.,  London 

"5 of 5 stars. We were 3 families traveling to Essaouira in October 2011, 6 children (three 3 year old boys and 3 babies) and 6 adults. The riad is perfect for families since it has 2 bedrooms on each floor and all bedrooms have their own bathroom. Also it is great to have a small pool in the garden for the children. It felt like an oasis in the middle of the exotic medina. The only thing one should be aware of is that the house is very "open" (a typical riad), and hence lacks a bit of privacy on each floor. For us being 3 families who knew each other well, the house was great and we shared everything. If one family or a couple is traveling alone you should specify if you want to have ground floor with direct access to garden and pool, first floor with the cosiest living room (and stairs directly to garden), or second floor with the nicest view and terrace. The rooms are cleaned every day and dishes are washed. For families with children it was fantastic to have such a great house to stay in and at the same time not think of doing the dishes or cleaning the bathroom. We often picked up great food from restaurants around town and brought it back to the riad with us, the tagines we had the food in were given back the next day. An easy way to have a restaurant-meal at home."

"Firstly I'd like to thank Diane the owner who has lovingly restored this beautiful riad for organising everything we needed to enjoy our holiday from the moment we stepped off the plane to the moment we arrived back at the airport. The service we received from the lady who looks after the riad was 100% from the amazing food she will cook for you on request (as a very reasonable price) to the cleaning which is done every day but you don't really notice she is there. Even though there were only 4 of us we decided to rent the whole riad for a week in June 2011 so we could enjoy the peace and quiet. This riad is 2 minutes walk from all the restaurants in the medina should you choose to eat out. The beach is only a 5 minute walk away and very clean. This property has the luxury of a small plunge pool which was very welcome during the heat of the day and again this is cleaned daily. We liked this riad so much we have booked the whole house again for the 2012 June festival. I don't have anything negative to say about this riad, it is a little/large gem and a credit to Diane who has put he heart and soul into restoring this riad - Diane, we were blown away with the care we received and from the moment we entered the riad."

“We wanted to drop you a line on our return to the UK to say thank you for a fantastic week at your Riad. The Riad itself is beautiful and obviously very lovingly restored, its tiles, windows and railings wonderfully smart but never looking out of place, the bedrooms were comfortable and spacious and the utilities functioned very well: despite the proximity of good restaurants we still managed to find time to cook a few meals in the kitchen. We loved the roof terrace and the garden, using them wherever possible (basically whenever it was light and we weren't out!). The pet tortoises were a lovely touch and very cute. Essaouira was a lovely surprise. The beach was stunning and, even discounting it's vastness, it would be a credit to any town. However the beautiful desolation one could seek out by wandering the full length was something that I will never forget. We loved the port, the restaurants and local hotels with terraces which had far reaching views, the medina itself....all such memorable and vivd experiences. Finding a taxi driver (thanks again to you) who was willing and passionate about his country as we did meant that we thoroughly enjoyed our coast-road journey from the riad to Agadir Airport. We did not want the journey to end. I think this is really saying something, having witnessed the slightly kamikaze attitude to driving that the taxi drivers CAN have! Our driver was great. He loved his town, and Morocco, and was very proud of the views we were able to take in. He was knowledgeable about the key places on route and even bought us some local bananas! His attitude was very much "you have paid your fare, you have me for the day" and I would implore you to add him to your trusted list. Finally, a letter to you could not be complete without mention of Abdul and the cleaning staff. He was truly like a guardian for us, stepping in where we needed him, popping up here and there and always smiling. He was such a reassurance and a real asset. The cleaning staff were efficient, quick, never intrusive, polite and effective, again always with a smile. “

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