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Koutoubia Cafe: Pleasant place to stop for a cooling drink
Situated opposite the Koutoubia Mosque - hence its' name!
Quite a pleasant cafe, with comfy wicker/rattan chairs and tables.
I stopped by for my mint tea fix, after a morning wandering around the nearby Cyber park, then the Ensemble Artisan.
I'm not sure if any food is served here, I didn't see anyone eating. The cafe is very popular with tourists who appeared to all be relaxing over a cooling drink - which appeared to all be non alcoholic.
It's a good place for people spotting, as this is one of Marrakeshes busiest areas.
I was here on Friday mid day, as the call to prayer reverberated all around. Afterwards, hundreds of men streamed out of the Koutoubia Mosque, rushing back to their work etc.
The only downside is that the fumes from the continual stream of traffic can sometimes be a problem.
Favorite Dish: I had a pot of mint tea - Very refreshing!
- Budget Travel
- Arts and Culture
- Religious Travel
Cafe Glacier: Great View on Djemaa-Al-Fnaa square !
The Cafe is located next to Djemaa-Al-Fna square, opposite the Souk entrance. The roof terrace gives superb views on the Djemaa al Fnaa square as the evening spectacles unfold. Consummation is obligatory, but they don`t mind if you just sip a mint tea, take some photos, and then leave. The food is OK and really cheap (a filling chicken coscous for just 50 Dirham), but the service is lousy and orders can take some time. The waiters rather chat amongst themselves than take orders.
Favorite Dish: Chicken Couscous
- Food and Dining
Restaurant l'Etoile: mint tea and mohallabia
The Restaurant l'Etoile à Marrakech is yes a restaurant, but I guess it is more popular as a tea-room. It's just off Djema el Fnaa and has quite a nice decor inside - art deco, actually. Considering its location, it's frequented mostly by local people rather than tourists, which is normally a good sign.
Favorite Dish: We went there after dinner, in search of a mohallabia - and it was the only place where we found it near Djema el fnaa. Quite good mohallabia and delicious mint tea. Service is slow, don't go there if you are in a hurry.
Cafés: Great place to watch people right on the square...
This cafe was right on Derma El Fna and it was few story high. You have a great view from the deck at front of the cafe as well as from the last front.
People go to this cafe for the views and photo opportunities ( you can zoom in from the top floor on anything you want for free), or because they don't know any better. There are also people who follow the lady with the stick, umbrella or any other object held high......yeah...
The service, food, and prices are tourist oriented. The place is easy to find and it will feed you if you are hungry.
I am not recommending this place, but I also don't think you shouldn't go there. It is what it is. If you will get the table in the first raw on the deck or the last floor, it will make out for touristy food and you will be satisfied.
Favorite Dish: Oh, and we met few people who enjoyed the food......but yet.... we enjoyed the street vendors.....
Patisserie des Princes: Visit one of Marrakech's most famous patisseries
This place is firstly one of Marrakech's most famous or best regarded patisseries - (which is also what I like to check out when Ive visited places around Morocco) - been here a number of times and with my local connection without the influence of it being recommended in my copy of the Lonely Planet - and secondly a cafe -
with a nice sitting area out the back for a safe haven of peace away from the hustle and stressful bustle of the area! Prices for coffee and freshly squeezed orange juice - especially considering delicious orange juice is available a few minutes away at the main square Djma elFna for only 3 dirham - are a little dearer than elsewhere but its still a great price by any european standards - eg a grande noss-noss and a large orange juice together for 21 dirham is not bad being only £1.30 with a nice place to sit to relax as my breakfast before the rush off to my morning flight!
Coffee in Morocco is generally another wonder that I enjoy Morocco for - it almost always just tastes so much nicer than coffee anywhere back in the UK!probably comparable with most coffees that Ive enjoyed around Spain, France and Italy. Usually Ive ordered it as 'noss-noss' which is still milky enough but stronger with half the milk of usual coffee.
Favorite Dish: Famous for its patisseries - you can buy a pastry or something to eat there and then or you can dabble in the mouthwatering selections of little biscuits and cakes sold by weight ie price per 100g or per kilogram - which will be placed into whatever appropriate sized box and nicely wrapped with a ribbon which can make nice gifts to take home or if visiting family or friends in Morocco so you could get a number of boxes made up if you wish. - and one for you to eat while you travel around!?
(I will have to hunt out my sources to remind myself how the cost is on average and add this later)
And the coffee though there are a multitude of places around the area that serve just as good coffee at same or cheaper prices.
- Family Travel
- Historical Travel
- Romantic Travel and Honeymoons
Cafe Glacier: A view of the square
Situated on the square, this cafe provides a relaxing escape from the heat of the afternoon & the crowds of the evening. Hot & cold drinks & snacks can be bought here, the view from the balcony is free as long as a purchase has been made. It also allows you to take some of the best aerial shots of Marrakesh.
Favorite Dish: The menu includes various dishes from local food to a standard pizza.
Grand Café de la Poste: A mythical place inside the downtown
Built in the 20s at the French protectorate era, this place used to be a café, hotel and postal relay (where comes its name) located in the new city of Marrakech. It has been transformed later into a hotel-café-restaurant by the Glaoui pasha.
Recently restored keeping its pure tradition by the owners of the establishments La Cantine du Faubourg, Le Quinzième in Paris and Bô-Zin in Marrakech, the “Grand Café de la Poste” has brought back its charm and magic thanks to a sublime decoration.
This place offers calm ambiance where we taste some delicious meals (breakfasts, lunches, dinners), prepared by the two chefs Cyril Lignac and Sana Gamas, in the lounge, the mezzanine, the pergola or the terrace.
A brewery service is proposed during all the day.
- Food and Dining
- Romantic Travel and Honeymoons
Le Chat Qui Rit: Best Pizza in Marrakech
The Chat Qui Rit (Laughing Cat) is a local favorite in Marrakech. The restaurant is spacious with bright decorations. The owner, Bernard, is from Corsica and does a wonderful job of mixing Italian and French Cuisine. He also decorated the restaurant himself aiming to replicate a provence interior that reminds me of a Vangogh painting.
The prices are very reasonable and an average meal probably runs 100 dhs- 150 dhs including wine.
Bernard greets each guest, and after a few visits you will be on a first name basis. As a tourist just passing through you will see a great mix of people including expats and Moroccans a like that come to enjoy home made pasta, pizzas and an amazing creme brulee!
Favorite Dish: I love the salade calanque which has calamari, grilled eggplant, grilled peppers, greens, and sundried tomatoes. The Salmon tartare is another great starter. Also I recommend the Pasta Verde!
- Arts and Culture
- Budget Travel
- Food and Dining
Cafés: The No-Name Cafe
One of our favourite cafes in the medina was this nameless place just before the turn off on Rue Bab Agnaou for Hotel Central Palace. They specialise in yoghurts and fruit drinks , and the prices are so good you'll keep coming back for more. A pint glass sized fruit cocktail cost only 13Dh, while you can get a fresh yoghurt or smoothie for 4Dh. You could also try their signature bamboo juice, at 5Dh a glass.
Cafés: Terrasse Panoramique
The big attraction of Terrasse Panoramique is its rooftop terrace overlooking the Djemaa el-Fna. Drinks are expensive (15 Dh for a mint tea) but not exorbitant, but it's worth it as you have one of the best vantage points over the square, and a nice view of the Koutoubia mosque in the distance. The café is on the east side of the square, beyond the orange juice stalls.
Cafés: Cafe Ennaser
This became our regular breakfast cafe in Marrakech. I'm not sure what in particular attracted us. It's on one of the busiest roads on the medina and is one of your typical male-dominated cafes. However, the waiters were friendly, drinks were cheap and it was right beside a crepe stand, from where you could order delicious cheap Moroccan crepes. (Moroccan crepes are saltier and more savoury than traditional French ones - well worth trying)
Grand Cafe de la Poste: Sophisticated cafe in Gueliz
I ate at Grand Cafe de la Poste at lunchtime on my last day in Marrakech during a visit to the city in February 2007.
This upmarket cafe is located in the modern Gueliz region of the city, just off Ave Mohamed V, opposite McDonalds and just a short walk north of Place du 16 Novembre.
Due to its prices, which are significantly higher than the typical local cafe, this place seems to attract mainly tourists and the better off locals (many of whom were in business suits). Despite its generally high brow appearance and clientele, it does not have a dress code, so the waitresses were happy to show me to a table in my shorts and t-shirt.
An online menu can be found here. Befitting of its upmarket status, dishes on the menu include:
Monkfish carpaccio: 85 Dhs
Shrimp "Provencale" tart: 90 Dhs
Salmon tartare: 115 Dhs
Oualidia oysters: 190 Dhs for 12
French croque monsieur, turkey or ham: 80 Dhs
Potato tortilla with artichokes and basil: 95 Dhs
Spinach fusili pasta: 95 Dhs
Roast red mullets, saffron rice and peppers: 115 Dhs
Wok sauteed chicken and vegetables: 120 Dhs
Skewers of beef and ratatouille: 115 Dhs
Pear Charlotte: 80 Dhs
Classic Tiramisu: 80 Dhs
Apple tart: 65 Dhs
The impressive drinks menu includes a long list of fruit juices (mango, kiwi, orange, melon, grapefruit, apple...), a large selection of local and imported red and white wines and very expensive beers. The cheapest beer was Kronenbourg at 55 Dhs a bottle, with Casablanca and Heineken at 60 Dhs a bottle and Corona and Bud at 70 Dhs a bottle. There is also a long cocktail list (alcoholic and non-alcoholic) and a selection of vodkas, whiskys and other spirits.
There are a few tables out front on the pavement, shaded by umbrellas, a few dozen tables on a shaded raised terrace and more tables inside. I sat on the outdoor terrace. The staff are friendly and there are plenty of them to service your every need.
Favorite Dish: I opted for:
3 fried eggs and bacon with sauteed potatoes - Cost: 65 Dhs
On a menu with lots of fancyily named dishes and expensive prices, good old bacon and eggs looked the best value option for a Sunday brunch to me! As its name suggests, the dish consisted of 3 fried eggs in a bowl, topped with 4 or 5 rashers of bacon and a bowl of about 30 small sauteed potatoes covered in herbs. Accompanied by a bowl of fresh sliced bread.
Jus D'Orange - Cost: 30 Dhs
Ice cold fresh orange juice served in a vase, enough for 3 decent sized glasses.
Comfortable surroundings, an upmarket ambience, good food and an excellent drinks menu. Very expensive by local economic standards!
Cafe Koutoubia: Bustling cafe opposite Koutoubia mosque
Cafe Koutoubia is a bustling cafe located on the corner of Rue Fatima Zohra and Ave Mohamed V, less than 5 minutes walk from the famous Djemaa El Fna square.
It takes its name from the famous monument that dominates the view from its outdoor tables - the Koutoubia minaret (the 70m high tower of the Koutoubia mosque located right across the road from the cafe).
During my visit to the city in February 2007, its outdoor tables were often busy in the afternoons, especially as sunset approached. I visited for a drink one afternoon after a busy day of sightseeing and sat at one of the outdoor cane furniture tables, surrounded by plants and with a great view of the pink minaret against a clear blue sky. Not only does the cafe offer great views of the minaret, but it also offers you the chance to hear the call to prayer loud and clear....although I also had that opportunity in my hotel room at 5:30 each morning! ;-)
The cafe offers no menu and it doesn't serve food. It really is just a place to get a drink and relax. I ordered a bottle of Coca Cola (8 Dhs) and whiled away half an hour in a comfortable chair.
While the cafe was bustling in the afternoons and early evenings, whenever I passed by later in the evenings (11pm) it was well and truly closed - lights out, furniture moved inside, doors locked...
There is an adjoining Internet cafe that I used on a number occasions during my stay. It can be accessed by going down the steps to the side of the cafe. Internet access costs approx. 6 Dhs (0.40 GBP) per hour.
A bustling cafe for an afternoon drink, with great views of the Koutoubia minaret!
Arsat El Bilk: Local cafe, close to Djemaa El Fna
Arsat El Bilk is a small cafe located within spitting distance of the famous Djemaa El Fna square.
It is located on Rue Moulay Ismail, across from Place de la Foucauld, and just a two minute walk from the bustling square.
What struck me about Arsat El Bilk was that, unlike the cafes and restaurants on the adjacent Rue Bab Agnaou, it was filled mainly with locals rather than tourists. Dozens of locals, predominantly men, were sat at shaded tables drinking their tea or coffee, reading their newspapers, playing cards, smoking cigarettes and watching the world pass them by.
It is a good spot for watching the masses of people walk by en route to/from the Djemaa El Fna and to watch as the mopeds, horses and carts, donkeys, taxis and cyclists weave in and out of them!
I asked the waiter for a menu, but they had none. I asked him if they served food, but he said not. I ordered a mint tea, which I had been craving all morning.
The waiter brought me a small teapot filled with mint leaves and three sugar cubes, enough for two glasses of mint tea. He also brought me a glass of mineral water to accompany it. Total cost: 10 Dhs (approx. 0.65 GBP).
A laid-back local cafe, just off Djemaa El Fna.
Cafe Glacier L'Elysee: Quiet cafe in Ville Nouvelle
I visited Cafe Glacier L'Elysee one afternoon during my visit to Marrakech in February 2007.
This quiet cafe, with tables under a canopy and a host of umbrellas, is located on Boulevard Mohammed Zerktouni, in the Ville Nouvelle region of the city.
There are many French style cafes in Marrakech, with outdoor tables on the pavements. Many of these are located on Ave Mohamed V and the area around the intersection of Ave Mohamed V and Rue de Yougoslavie. These cafes, with tables in the sunshine and waiter service, fill up early in the afternoon, so I often ventured onto the quieter side streets to find a place to sit and enjoy an afternoon drink. It was on one of these quieter side streets that I stumbled across the small and friendly Cafe Glacier L'Elysee.
I took a seat at an outdoor table, shaded from the hot afternoon sunshine, and studied the menu (which was in French and Arabic only). The vast majority of the menu is devoted to drinks, with only a few food items available.
The drinks menu includes a large selection of fresh fruit juices (orange, pineapple, grapefruit, lemon, apple...), canned soft drinks and a wide variety of coffees and teas. No alcohol is served.
The few food items include: chocolate filled croissants, bread with butter and jam and something that includes cheese ("fromage"), but which my French skills weren't capable of translating!
Service was friendly and laid back.
During the course of my visit, a few people wandered into the cafe trying to sell things (ornaments, leather belts, sunglasses...), but this was a frequent occurence during my stay in Marrakech and not unique to this cafe.
Favorite Dish: I opted for:
Freshly squeezed orange juice - Cost: 10 Dhs
A glass of very fresh and very refreshing orange juice!
Pain + beurre + confiture - Cost: 7 Dhs
A couple of crusty bread rolls with butter (straight from the fridge and too hard to spread) and orange jam.
Good value cafe fare and friendly service on a quiet side street.
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