Marrakech smells of peppermint, pulsates to the rhythm of the drums on the Djemaa el Fna square and welcomes strangers with curious hospitality … For those who long for a warm getaway in spring, the African city is just the thing.
For spring: beautiful Marrakech
A big smile already shines at the airport. Even before entering the country, we are charmingly intercepted and received and put in an extra-fast queue for the formalities. One of the advantages of staying in the « Royal Mansour », the hotel that belongs to the royal family. Flying is then as uncomplicated as driving a taxi elsewhere.
In general, a trip to Marrakech is ideal for anyone with a great wanderlust and little time. A short trip ensures a proper orient dose in the concentrate. Our base also glows in the red clay for which Marrakech is famous and forms a city within the city, just five minutes from the bustle of the souks. The « Royal Mansour » keeps everyday life outside with defiant walls and opens its gate to a park, crisscrossed by water features and accompanied by birdsong. The Royal Mansour Hotel
Instead of staying in rooms, guests stay in their own riad. This is the name of the multi-storey Moroccan houses that appear closed to the outside and only reveal their wealth behind the threshold.
The architecture has two reasons: modesty and the weather. The courtyard provides shade, the thick walls keep the sun and heat out. In our mosaic-adorned courtyard, a small fountain splashes us awake in the morning. Magical! We shouldn’t actually have to leave the hotel, because it was here that the best craftsmen and artists in the country had their hands. Wall ornaments made from thousands of mosaic stones, Courses decorated with the most delicate lace structures from plaster carvings, finely forged silver cans from which fresh mint tea is poured. By the way: Pouring from a height of 50 centimetres is not a show, but provides proof of quality. Only when the tea forms large bubbles is it really fresh. We leave this strengthened, after all we want to experience Marrakech.
The most beautiful places in Marrakech
We stroll past the Koutoubia mosque to the Djemaa el Fna square, which only really comes to life when the sun goes down. Thick clouds of smoke hang over countless mobile stands where food is cooked over an open fire in the evening. Drummers rhythmically accompany the snake charmer. And over the whole scene, white doves circle tirelessly at dusk. Magical!
No wonder that Yves Saint Laurent was in love with this place. It is thanks to him that the Jardin Majorelle with its sculptural succulents, its ponds, in which kois are swimming, and the bright blue house still exist. All of this was in danger of decaying. Without further ado, the designer bought the property, which bordered on his own. Right next to it, a fantastic museum is dedicated to him today. This is also Marrakech: a fine contrast program to the lively souks, which are by no means only for tourists.
In the absence of their own refrigerators, many residents of Marrakech get their food fresh every day. And just like in every supermarket, there is order here too: all wickerwork in one alley, seven stalls with olives around a square, 20 meters of peppermint in a row and spices everywhere. The colourful mountains look pretty, but it’s best to buy Ras el Hanout in the darkest corner because sun and oxygen are not good for him.
On the other hand, the sun is very good for us, which is why we enjoy lunch in the garden when we get back to the hotel. From outside you can hear the call of the muezzin, inside it is heavenly green, and the sun warms everyone with oriental hospitality. Marrakech – a place of longing.
Spring getaway Marrakech
Royal Mansour , riad per night including breakfast from 1470 €, royalmansour.com
Yves Saint Laurent Museum : museeyslmarrakech.com
Kaftans & Co : norya-ayron.com