Taghazout itself is a small fishing and surf village, and Hyatt Place Taghazout Bay sits back into the argan tree-lined hills overlooking the lengthly beach and villages, the perfect spot for watching the sun go down.
The hotel has its own golf course and clubhouse (with spectacular views over Taghazout Bay), two outdoor swimming pools, gym, hammam and 24-hour food and drink. They also run a shuttle bus to the beach and Agadir regularly so that you can explore other places if the poolside relaxation gets too much. There is an activity club for children to keep the smaller members of the family occupied too. A 24-hour shop in the hotel is a welcome bonus as you are pretty cut off from local facilities. As well as buying things you might have forgotten, you can also borrow things like phone chargers during your stay. You can eat at the main restaurant, Gallery Café, or lunches and two evenings a week at the Golf Clubhouse — there is plenty of choice.
The rooms are spacious with a large walk-in shower, plenty of toiletries, a safe, lots of storage space, lounge area and balcony. The wifi here is available throughout the hotel and grounds with no need for a password, which saves a lot of time logging in. There is also 24-hour room service and the hotel can help to arrange any excursions or transport you might need. There are modern design touches throughout the hotel including a wooden seating area, sunken lounge areas outside, and even Moroccan inspired design in the lift. It’s a great hotel for lounging by the pool with the odd excursion.
Riad Star is a complete escape in the middle of the hectic Marrakech medina. As is custom with the traditional riad accommodation, through the winding lanes of the medina, you’ll stumble across a door, often ornate compared to the mud walls that you’re passing. And inside, you’ll find an escape, and Riad Star is no exception. The beautiful shiny door with a silver star gives you some idea as to the style that you’ll experience once you step through it.
Riad Star was the Moroccan home of American-French star Josephine Baker. The careful design is a mix of Art Deco and Moroccan inspired textiles, lighting, tiles and furniture and is timelessly stylish. In the dining room you’ll also find a collection of costumes, manuscripts and other paraphernalia celebrating Josephine’s career in Music Hall. Each room is also themed around particular parts of her life. In the Chiquita room (her leopard), we were set just off of the roof terrace where there are loungers and a seating area for you to relax in after a busy day exploring Marrakech.
Whilst not as notoriously difficult as Fez, Marrakech’s medina can be a confusing place and you can easily lose yourself. Riad Star does everything they can to make the experience as easy and pain-free for you as possible. They have created their own app which is a map of the medina with recommended places to eat and drink and the riad mapped. It works from GPS without need for internet, and if you are without a smartphone then they provide one for you to borrow. They also give you a phone with the hotel and host Aziz’s numbers saved for emergencies, or in case you get lost. The app is amazing and we would have been lost (literally) without it, we also ate at a number of the recommended restaurants and were not disappointed.
With just seven rooms, it’s a really personal experience and host Aziz is endlessly helpful, just ask him if you need anything. You can also rent to whole riad privately if you’re planning a group trip. They also have a hammam attached to the riad and you can arrange for traditional hammam spa treatments. Riad Star is a stylish retreat in the busy Marrakech medina, and we can’t find any fault with it.
If you’re looking for some respite from the hustle and bustle of Marrakech then you won’t find anywhere better that Hotel Les Cinq Djellabas. Set in the palmeries about 15 minutes to the east of Marrakech itself, Hotel Les Cinq Djellabas is a complete oasis of calm, luxury and relaxation.
Each of the 10 ‘rooms’ are in fact traditional eco-lodges designed by Thierry Isnardon to highlight contemporary design as well as traditional Moroccan craft. The lodges have a seating area, fireplace, luxurious bath and walk-in shower, king-size four poster bed, private outdoor seating area, TV, fridge, safe and Moroccan toiletries, with the choice of a suite or a deluxe suite. With clever planting of olive trees, banana trees and palm trees, you have complete privacy within the hotel grounds.
The service is seamless with breakfast arriving wherever you deign to sit in the morning, be it outside your lodge, outside the restaurant or in the restaurant. Lunch and evening menus are brought to you so that you can pre-order, meaning that your meal arrives at the time that you have ordered it for in the place that you have requested. Even though we arrived late in the evening, we were able to order food to our room, and every meal we ate at Hotel Les Cinq Djellabas was delicious and presented beautifully. The staff are incredibly friendly, efficient and helpful and assisted us with everything we needed during our stay.
Alternatively, if you book 3 nights or more, you are gifted with a return trip to Marrakech each night of your stay if you want to experience the Marrakech medina and buzz as well as return airport transfers. There are plenty of other activities on offer if you want a break from relaxing, and in an instant one of the members of staff can have you booked on a camel ride, quad biking adventure, buggy ride or other excursion that suits your adrenaline levels (we can personally recommend the quad biking). Alternatively, alongside the beautiful swimming pool, you can relax with a range of spa treatments available at the hotel.
This is one of the most relaxing hotels we have ever stayed at and with the most seamless service.
Camping and luxury don’t often go hand in hand, in your head or in reality. Well, let Desert Luxury Camp change your mind about that!
Set at Erg Chebbi in the Moroccan Sahara desert, this is far from traditional camping. Each ‘suite’ is a large tent with king size bed and a single bed, dressing table area, seating area and ensuite shower and toilet with hot water and toiletries. You also have power sockets in your tent to ensure that everything is charged and ready for the hundreds of pictures you’ll be taking.
Within the main camp there is a dining tent (you can also eat outside under the stars), chill-out area, camp fire, hammock area and plenty of seating. The tents are luxuriously decorated with beautifully crafted furniture and textiles, as is the whole camp with sumptuous Moroccan carpets and cushions throughout. At night, the patterned lanterns provide a stunning backdrop to the endless Moroccan stars.
The camp is set by itself in what feels like the middle of nowhere, with a huge sunset-orange sand dune as a backdrop. As you drive towards it, you’ll see many signs for other camps, which are often very close together and busy, unlike the complete peace that Desert Luxury Camp offers you.
Set further back, about a 20 minute drive off-road in a 4×4 from the nearest road, the silence and darkness that the Desert Luxury Camp offers is indescribable, you really need to experience it to believe it. Relaxing on the sunloungers in camp and watching the Milky Way with its shooting stars and the odd visible planet is an incredibly special experience. The dune behind the camp is also the perfect spot for sunrise and sunset-watching.
All food is provided for you in camp if you are staying for at least 2 nights (recommended) and you’ll be treated to traditional Moroccan breakfasts with pancakes, cakes, bread, yogurt, fruit, hot drinks and fruit juice. Lunches will be a selection of Moroccan dishes including couscous, meat, salad and breads. And dinners will be a taste sensation with succulent tagines filled with lamb, chicken, couscous, traditional kefta and soups. Make sure you make the most of the unlimited Moroccan mint tea and soft drinks to keep you hydrated in the desert heat, your host Houssaine will ensure that you are refreshed and very well looked after.
Included within your stay are activities such as camel rides, sandboarding, board games in camp, visits to local villages, traditional Berber music and, of course, relaxing. The camp has a brilliant driver, Mustapha, who will be able to organise transport for all of this, will expertly guide your 4×4 through the sandy desert, and can also arrange transfers to the camp from other parts of Morocco.