More about Atlas Riad Medina & Spa
Lovely hotel, would highly recommend!
I stayed for 4 nights at this hotel and would highly recommend it. The bathroom and room were very clean - the room overlooked the pool, which looked really pretty all lit up in the evening - and it was relaxing sitting on the balcony, which I think all the rooms had. The beds were comfortable. There is live music on the weekend. The entrance is gorgeous, and they have a relaxation room which is beautifully decorated. The only "improvement" for the room would be that there wasn’t a kettle or an iron/board - I would have expected that, but otherwise excellent, and if I ever re-visit this city, would definitely stay here for comfort.
The buffet breakfast was ok - plenty of food, but not as much variety as some of the other hotels I have stayed at. We did order some room service on a couple of the evenings, and was quite happy with the food/
The concierge did try to be helpful but didn’t know have much information about any tours around Marrakech, apart from the 24 hour open-top buses, which we ended up buying. 130 DHS each. Good if you want to see the main sites, but beware, the actual bus running times are 8:30am to around 8:30pm, and there is a bus every half an hour. I found out a bit too late that it is better to go to the main Tourist Information Centre in town, where they do have organised tours. I would also recommend to get a local guide who will take you to all the main places - its cheaper and better. (its good to read up a little in advance and explain what you want to see). The 24 hour open bus map (readily available on the buses and at the hotel) may give you some ideas of places. Make sure he speaks English and agree a price up front. The gardens are ok - the most developed was perhaps the Yves St Laurent garden away from the main centre - tranquil - but small enough to cover in a couple of hours.
The spa in the hotel was pretty good and a great way to end the day after walking around the town all day. Ladies, if you have never had a aqua-gommage, I would recommend it for the experience!! The treatment lasts for 2 hours, where you are basically scrubbed from head to toe in a steam room by one of the therapists, before relaxing in a very tranquil area overlooking a pool, and then going for a relaxing massage (and no boys, you can't watch!). The whole treatment cost around 1350 Dirhams, which is about 90 pounds, but you would look to pay at least double that price in Central London. If you have 2 treatments during your trip, then it is about 2100 Dirhams. I also had the aquasimma treatment, but out of the two would recommend the first described above. I was a bit surprised that they don’t provide any drinks (even water), so would recommend before you go in, you order your drinks and ask for them to deliver it once you have had your treatment. Also, the locker area is not as secure as I would have liked it to be - quite a few keys missing, so leave anything you don’t need (eg jewellery etc) in your hotel room
NB this hotel is also called the Atlas Medina Hotel. I am not sure if some of the other negative reviews I read relating to Atlas Hotel are the same as the Medina and Spa Hotel, but if they are, I am very surprised!
Some tips about Marrakech itself - you can't get Dirhams outside of Morocco, so take Euros and GBP with you. After you collect your luggage and are about to leave the airport at Marrakech, there is a bureau de change, but the queues can be quite lengthy. As most other reviewers have said, the taxi drivers will try to take as much money as they can from the airport. I paid 12 Euros/120 Dirhams to get to the hotel - a bit pricey, but I guess everyone has to make a living! The exchange rate is roughly 15 DHS = 1GBP, and 10 DHS = 1 EURO. In and around town, you can pay anything between 30-60 DHS. Negotiate if you can but it depends on how long you are prepared to wait for the next taxi to arrive!
I would highly recommend brushing up on your French. Nearly everyone we met either spoke French or Arabic, and very little English - I didn’t quite appreciate that before I arrived there. Finally, my French from school days came into use!!
The best time to really do some touristy stuff is first thing in the morning (around 8:30 to 11:30) and then from 5:30 onwards. In the afternoon in June, it can get very hot (dry heat rather than muggy), so always keep some bottled water on you. Take a horse-cart ride around - again agree a price up front. There are loads near the main square. I had also previously read that women should cover up, but was quite surprised at how many tourists wore sleeveless etc and I didn’t see any of them get hassled. I guess its all about respecting the traditions and ways of the place, and if you are covered up, you may just get a better price!
We got lost in the souks and were helped out by a local who took us back to the main square. It was admittedly a little scary being taken down some quite claustrophobic alleys, and I wasn’t sure just how safe we were but the local was reassuring. Next time, it would perhaps be better to have a local guide who can navigate us
The multiple orange and fig trees were lovely and seeing the intricate and beautiful artisan works is great.
Finally, I just want to say that it is a nice place to visit - people are very friendly, it is a poor country, so if you are expecting the tourism or development of eg Dubai, then you're probably looking to visit the wrong place. 1 to 2 days is perhaps sufficient to see Marrakech itself - any longer, it would be good to take an organised tour outside of the main city into Sud - the South - where there are waterfalls - or to the beach in Agadir or to the mountains.
marrakech was lovely but the only hassle we got was at the hotel
We decided to book this hotel because of the reviews it had received on this web site.
On the whole the experience was a bit of a let down.
The hotel itself is new and the rooms are of good size and immaculate. The staff at reception were polite, staff at the restaurant extremely friendly and the concierge was very helpful.
However, the 'pool boy' was rude and abrupt: telling grown up women off like little kids-under no circumstances are you to put your flip flops on the sun loungers, even if the ants are swarming all around you. Also we encountered problems in the bar connected to the hotel the 'Living Room Lounge', where we were made to feel rather uncomfortable and not very welcome.
It is a great shame that some people working at this hotel have such a bad attitude and spoil it for the other, wonderful employees.
I travel through work and have stayed in far better hotels so the attitude we encountered was not necessary. Marrakech is enchanting and romantic, thumbs up, however the Medina Spa gets no more than an 'ok'!
good experince, enjoyed hotel, good value
Week's break - paid UKP 640 for two people B&B inc flights from UK. Very good value. Iimpressed with hotel - clean, prosperous, nice staff, large rooms. Room service pizzas great, alcohol well served and affordable, pool fine (not heated, but that is not a problem in morrocco in June! :-)) The alacarte restaurant was good. NB: all prices are the same whether u order room service, by the pool, inner bar or restaurant. I have no problems with that.
The spa was great - tho I'm no expert - we did the "desert rain" experience - fun for £35 - (850 dh). Agree they do not give u a drink unless u ask - ask!
We enjoyed walking the local area (Gueliz) and checking out the hotel. (but locals don't like u walking hand-in-hand if u are male and female!)
The Comptoir bar is touristy but great fun for a few loungy drinks.
IMHO u need a good hotel when visting Marrakech - the town is quite poor and you need a quality place to rest. agree with reviewers wrt taxis and rip-off attitude - but we are much wealthier than the locals and any local taxi driver who uses the meter rate gets nothing. The souks are worth a quick wander but the lauded main square is underwhelming
We felt very happy we had chosed the Medina.
Mad About The Medina
Just back from a 4-night stay at the Medina Hotel & Spa, and will definitely be returning.
The hotel was spotless, our room was spacious and comfortable, and the pool area lovely, (especially at night when all lit up).
We didn't have the time, (or spare evenings!) to eat in the hotel, but can strongly recommend "La Sultana" - beautiful roof-top terrace restaurant in the kasbah, "Dar Moha" - although try to book a table in the courtyard, and "La Maison D'Arabe" - great food and service.
We found Marrakech and its people welcoming and friendly, a quick "non merci", and they do stop pestering you. Our petit taxi from the airport cost 90Dhms, (£6), which I found to be reasonable - in agreement with previous posts - they have to make a living after all!
Two tips: a little French goes a long way........ and there's an ATM and a bureau de change just before the exit from the airport to get that currency.
Sirenity in the hustle bustle of this crazy city!
This hotel was fantastic - it exceeded my expectations greatly.
The rooms are very large and modern, covering the space of a suite by most hotel standards. The staff are all excellent and take their professionalism and grooming very seriously.
It was 53 outside and we had dodgy bellies from eating in the souks. We appreciated our clean room and baltic air condidioning more than air itself. We heard horror stories at the airport of people skimping on accomodation and becoming insect food for the week.
The pool is always clean and staff attentive, and the half board is excellent value, giving you breakfast plus lunch or dinner daily. Meal is a large buffet of delicious tagines and we happily ate there each night.
The hotel is in the nice part of the city, which is clean, easy to get taxis and safe for tourists.
I would highly recommend - you may never affort 5** accom again.
Well worth it
We stayed at the Medina and Spa for 5 days, and had a lovely time. The hotel is very clean and has anything that you could want, the hotel rooms air conditioned, which is very needed and the bathrooms lovely (a must for upset tummies!)
The pool was great, we spent most of the day by the pool and ventured into the medina at night time because of the heat. The location is good, it is nice to get away from the hectic centre and relax.
There are lovely cafeterias and gelateries around the area, which are worth a visit.
The hotel food isnice, although very pricey, compared to the rest of Marrakech, we went to the local supermarket and stocked up on alcohol, which was 15 times cheaper (really!) to keep in the room fridge.
A taxi from the airport should cost no more than 90dhs, make sure that you haggle, we were told that it would be 150dhs, which is a rip off. A taxi to the medina is 15dhs, no more.
I really reccomend the hotel, it is lovely.
Great hotel - highly recommended
Chose this hotel based on Trip Advisor reviews. Thankfully, the hotel lived up to the positive comments made by other users.
As the Moroccan currency is closed, you will need to get some dirhams for the taxi journey. There is an exchange office at the airport as well as a cash point (however there was no cash in the machine when we tried). The exchange rate is fixed so you will get the same exchange rate pretty much everywhere. For convenience I used my Nationwide debit card to withdraw cash from the cashpoints which are located everywhere in Marrakech.
Hotel is approximately 5-10 minutes away from the airport. We were quoted 150DH at the airport, but paid the taxi driver 100DH when we reached the hotel. In hindsight, even this was too much as the return journey to the airport from the hotel cost just 50DH.
Hotel itself is lovely, with large rooms and huge kingsize bed. There was also a balcony, but unfortunately the view from the back of the hotel is not as nice as the front. Bathroom was also of a high standard with powerful shower and large bath tub.
There was no kettle in the room, so you may want to consider taking your own if you like more than one cuppa a day. Iron was provided upon request from housekeeping, but unfortunately they said they did not have an ironing board.
Very good selection at breakfast. Range of pastries were delicious. Also had pancakes, eggs and selection of fruit.
Overall, would highly recommend the Medina and Spa hotel.
This place is fantastic.
The staff are really helpful and will help you with anything.
The rooms are huge - we had a double and the bed was the biggest I have ever seen. The bathroom was the same, beautifully decorated with tine mosaics and is really spacious - getting ready to go out was a treat!
The hotel is very chic, with beautiful design features and good air con throughout, plus although it's large it still maintains a really intimate feel to it and is lovely to return to after a day in the bustling town.
Oh and make sure you take a trip down to the spa - I popped in just before we left and really regret not going down and booking a treatment before - it is one of the best I've seen.
I can't recommend this hotel more to anyone staying in Marrakech!
i hope people don't think this is what a five star hotel should be
This was a real disappointment and a let down for anyone who has ever stayed at a proper international hotel.
The actual building or location was not a problem but the service was terrible.Right from the check in the staff were rude, did not even have a pen to write out the forms. We had three people in a room with twin beds and had to ring housekeeping everyday for three towels. The rooms were only ever half cleaned and the mini bar was never stocked. The ac and beds were comfortale enough but you were not able to sleep until well after 2 am because of the loud music from the bar.
We were half board and the restaurant was average for a buffet, there were no drinks included in the evening meal , even water had to be bought at an inflated price 4 times that of the supermarket. We were told that we were not allowed to purchase water outside the hotel and bring it in and if we did security would check our bags and throw it away.
We were not allowed to use the pool in the sister hotel as is informed by the websites and kuoni brochure and the pool boy was not forth coming with the parasols in 45 degree temps.
our excursion booked to the atlas mountains and kasbah with major travel services (through the hotel rep) was poor with no ac in the bus as promised and a guide who said almost only 5 sentances with one being "if you want to know anything about this region read your guide books"!
i would feel sorry for anyone who is going to stay in this hotel as i would give it only a low 4 star for the facilties and a no star for service and atmoshere. We felt ripped off and think that it is no match for 5 star hotels in asia and europe and would not recommend staying here.