Riyad Edward is situated in the Zaouia quarter of the Medina, north of Marrakech's main square, the Djema el Fna. It is a large traditional house and is one of the principal Riyads in Zaouia, formerly the home of the Alaoui family, relatives of the country's ruling family. The Mosque of Sidi Bel Abbes and a charming square, easily accessible by car, taxi or even horse carriage, adjoin the property. The entrance to the house is by a typical Medina alley which contrasts strikingly with the interior of the house. A strong Moroccan influence runs throughout the property with stunning tile-work, carved cedar ceilings and doors, and various local artifacts and rugs scattered around the rooms.
The terraces and interiors have been lovingly and authentically restored from former neglect using tadillac (tadelakt), a marble type material unique to Morocco. A grand entrance leads into a pretty courtyard dominated by a tall cypress tree that was planted over 300 years ago. A swimming pool (7m x 3m, unheated) runs between the courtyardsâ€™ central arches with a traditional Moroccan Hammam next to it. Traditional Moroccan doors open onto the courtyard from a large sitting room and dining room and the master bedroom and bathroom.
The first floor contains the remaining 7 bedrooms, 7 bathrooms, sitting room and two large terraces. The Blue & Stripe bedrooms form part of the private Douriya Suite linked by a sitting room with spectacular ceilings and ensuite bathrooms. There are a number of fireplaces around the house.
The top floor terraces have magnificent views of the town, the Mosques and in winter the distant snow-capped Atlas Mountains. There are a further 3 rooms on these terraces.
Situated right in the heart of the Medina of the Old City, this authentic riad is close to all the attractions of this bustling city. Riyad Edward is in the Zaouia quarter of Marrakech, just north of the main square, the Djema el Fna, where snake charmers, entertainers and vendors all ply their trades. The Koutoubia Mosque with its decorative minaret and the many museums within the city are well worth visiting. The Mosque of Sidi Bel Abbes is right next door and the souk is easily reached with its warren of alleyways and bargains in carpets, leather goods and local crafts. The hotel, like most riads, is accessible only on foot down a narrow Medina alley.
Riyad Edward has an interesting history as one of the principal riads in Zaouia. It was the former home of the Alaoui family who were closely related to the Moroccan rulers. The Moroccan influence has been retained in this fully modernized boutique hotel. Carved ceilings, beautiful colourful local tilework, ornate doors and many local artifacts decorate the salons and guest rooms.
The outdoor areas are shaded by a 300-year old cypress tree which has witnessed many changes over the centuries. A swimming pool, unfortunately unheated, is the focal point of the courtyard and beneath the columned arcade is a hammam (steam room). This boutique hotel has just 6 guest rooms and 3 suites which overlook the courtyard and terraces. The private Douriya Suite has a sitting room and bedrooms with spectacularly decorated ‘tatoui’ ceilings. Despite its historic environment, the Riyad Edward is right up-to-date with Internet Wifi, money exchange, yoga lessons, personal shopping and transfers to the airport by arrangement.
The chef-prepared food is always available on demand and ranges from an excellent Moroccan breakfast to pastries and drinks during the day and superb continental or Moroccan dinner by candlelight. Slightly Bohemian in style with a relaxed atmosphere, this boutique hotel in Marrakech’s medina offers an authentic taste of Morocco at very affordable prices.