Kitchen serves food throughout the day and guests can dine anywhere on the grounds
Cell phones for guests to borrow
Knowledgeable concierge can arrange excursions
Free Wi-Fi throughout
Children under 12 discouraged (pro for some)
Additional breakfast items cost extra
Spa can book up in advance
Smoking allowed in common areas (pro for some)
Located in Marrakech's historic Medina, the elegant Riad Noir d'Ivoire is a luxury boutique hotel masquerading behind a traditional riad's walls. The entire riad has been restored with rich modern furnishings with both Berber and more typically Marrakeshi artwork, textiles, and accents, and the sprawling courtyard is home to two swimming pools. The kitchen serves exceptional Moroccan and French food throughout the day -- in addition to the free continental breakfast -- to wherever on the grounds guests would like to eat. The nine spacious, sumptuous rooms have flat-screen TVs and the rare-for-Morocco alcoholic minibar; the five suites have private balconies. The riad also has a hammam, small gym, lounge bar, boutique, and library. Wi-Fi is included.
Lush courtyards, antique-meets-designer furnishings, romantic lounge areas
Riad Noir d'Ivoire's traditional terra-cotta-colored exterior walls belie its sumptuous interior. The historic riad has been completely restored for discerning luxury sensibilities, from the traditional architecture, inlay work, and carved iron windows in the building to the Moroccan antiques, Berber artwork, and modern designer furniture that now fill it. Several courtyards and breezy rooms for lounging are filled with plants and hanging lanterns; there are cozy sitting areas throughout, with overstuffed leather sofas and tables on which meals can be served. Each pool has its own courtyard, lined with cushioned loungers. The library and Fumoir lounge bar could be gathering areas for guests, but, with just nine rooms, the romantic hotel never feels busy, although there is a surprisingly large number of staff for so small a hotel. Guests are discouraged from bringing children under the age of 12, so the serene air is undisturbed.
Hidden away on a winding cobbled street in Marrakech's historic, pedestrian-only Medina, Riad Noir d'Ivoire is a bit north of the old city's main action. The Jemaa El-Fna square is about 20 minutes away on foot, and the surrounding streets are filled with markets and restaurants. The airport is 15 minutes away by car, and the hotel can arrange transfers, which is helpful, considering how confusing the winding streets can be. Knowledgeable staff can offer expert recommendations for off-the-beaten-path finds and sights, and the hotel can arrange excursions, tours, and classes. The hotel gives all guests a Moroccan cell phone to use while they're visiting, so they can call the hotel if at any time they get lost.
Nine individually decorated rooms and suites, with flat-screen TVs and minibars
Riad Noir d'Ivoire's nine spacious rooms -- five suites, two junior suites, and two regular rooms -- are all individually decorated in sumptuous combinations of Moroccan antiques, Berber artwork, and European designer furnishings, in a warm, earth-toned color palette. All rooms have large, comfortable beds, and several of the rooms can include two single beds instead, upon request. Each room has a comfortable sitting area, flat-screen TV, air-conditioning, minibar with alcohol, and ornately carved windows looking out on one of the courtyards. Some of the higher-category rooms also have fireplaces, separate living area, dual vanities, and private balconies with hot tubs. All bathrooms are large and modern, with designer fixtures and walk-in rainfall showers, although higher-tier ones also include a bath tub.
Everything to be expected from a luxury boutique hotel, and more than the average riad
Riad Noir d'Ivoire's facilities are especially impressive for a central Medina riad. Its courtyards are notably large, with two serene, heated pools and plenty of space for lounging and dining. It has an acclaimed on-site hammam, whose treatments book up quickly, and a small, breezy fitness center. Unlike at many Moroccan riads, alcohol is available here, most notably in the sultry lounge bar, and there's a self-playing piano whose music wafts through the courtyards. A homemade, free breakfast is served wherever guests would like to eat each morning. Note, that extra orders at breakfast incur a charge. The kitchen serves delicious French and Moroccan food throughout the day, and the staff will deliver it to wherever guests are. The hotel also has a small boutique, a library, and free Wi-Fi throughout the complex.
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