One of our recommended things to do in Marrakech
As from last month, we at Riad Sapphire and Spa are offering our guests a unique way to visit the Red city. The ‘calèche’ is an age-old form of transport and is a fabulous way to see Marrakesh from the comfort of your own horse and carriage. It’s a good idea to go late afternoon just before the sun goes down and you’re tired from walking but would still like to see more.
We offer a scenic tour (approx. 75 minutes) which includes the Winter Garden district (Hivernage), La Mamounia, the Royal Palace, the Mellah (Jewish quarter), King’s Palace, the old Pasha of Marrakech’s residence, Koutoubia mosque and finishing by the main square, Place Jemaa El Fna’. Prices are £15 per person (minimum 2 people). We can’t guarantee the drivers speak English, so a guide would need to be booked if you wish commentary in English.
In addition, we can also book a romantic calèche ride to your pre-booked restaurant for the evening. Prices are £10 per person (minimum 2 people) per trip. Please note, no carriages can be booked after midnight as the horses have to go to bed!!
A UK charity – Spana regularly checks the condition of the calèche horses in Marrakech, so one can rest assured they are well looked after…
Some suggestions from our blog piece for a day’s excursion from Marrakech
- Walking in the foothills of the countryside around Marrakech
- A day in a kasbah
- Berber farm near Marrakech
- Country club
- Artists’ retreat
– a nice change from the bustling city of Marrakech.
We will help you arrange your trips/excursions.
Another new restaurant opening in #Marrakech
Buddha-Bar in #Marrakech Bar Lounge Restaurant with Zen music mix
The latest addition to this hotel franchise created by Raymond Visan and Claude Challe – the first restaurant bar lounge being opened in Paris, France in 1996.
The Buddha-Bar attracts foreign yuppies and wealthy tourists – offering an upscale bar-restaurant with an orientalist ‘lounge’ ambience” serving Asian cuisine and DJ music offering an eclectic mix of avant-garde music . The franchise has even compiled albums of their music mix under the Buddha Bar brand released by George V Records.
The opening night in #Marrakech was on Friday, October 23rd, 2015. The Buddha-Bar is close to the new Menara Mall – check the opening night video
The Jarjeer project, a community set in six hectares of land in the foothills of the High Atlas, was developed by Charles Hantom and Susan Machin. The couple have close ties with the village of Oumnas and are active in promoting and helping to preserve Berber traditions. They also have a great deal of love and respect for animals and work tirelessly in looking after donkeys and cows.
A visit to Jarjeer is possible and as the project is located just 24 kms from Marrakech, this can make for a great day trip with a difference.
You can travel to the estate and take part in a cooking class, eat a delicious meal and meet the donkeys and cows – great for children. Here you can spend a pleasant afternoon learning all about the working life of donkeys – an important part of Moroccan culture.
People you might meet at the estate include Sade Brahim, a farrier (a specialist in equine hoof care), who lives in the village and was trained by SPANA in Casablanca. Other team members include Mohammed, the Head Muleteer who has overall responsibility for the animals and Abjelih, an experienced horse rider who is also a guide for walks around the surrounding countryside.
All proceeds from the sale of refreshments goes to the welfare and upkeep of the animals.
As January is the month of good intentions and New Year’s resolutions, we thought we’d share with you one of our latest discoveries, Palm Pilates in Marrakech.
If you’re not the gym-bunny type, Pilates could be just the thing you are looking for.
Pilates is a system of exercises which has been designed to enhance strength, energy, flexibility, and posture, as well as enhance mental awareness.
Lise B, now a resident in Marrakech after first discovering Pilates in Paris, is offering classes in the city. Fully-qualified – she has recently added the Peak Pilates Level 3 certification to her other training credentials – the classes are proving a real hit with expats and locals alike.
The classes are suitable for everyone with varied techniques that work for people of all ages and fitness levels – the classes are also a great way to stay on track and to meet new people.
Group mat classes, which take place at Elite Danse on Rue Tariq Ben Ziad are 150 dhs per individual class. Private instruction costs from 300 dhs per session, while off site instruction starts from 500 dhs.
To find out more, see: http://www.palmpilates.com
Wat Po or the Temple of the Reclining Buddha as it is known, was not only one of Thailand’s first universities (founded in the Chakri Dynasty in 1782) but it remains the centre of Thai Arts and Knowledge. Traditionally, methods of Thai medicine and massage were gathered from the elders and passed on at the university to the next generation. The modern Wat Po Thai Traditional Medical and Massage School in Bangkok opened in 1955 and became the first Thai Medical School under the approval of Thai Ministry of Education. Amongst other things, the school offers courses of Thai Pharmacy, Thai medical practice and Thai Massage.
Why are we telling you this in our weekly blog on Marrakech? Well, there are a few Wat Po massage centres dotted around the world and now there’s one in Marrakech too, Africa’s first. It is located at the Fellah hotel, situated 20 minutes outside of the city in Tassoultante. The centre is open every day from 10am to 7pm and there are plenty of cheerful Thai therapists on-hand to offer advice on massages, aches and treatments. Out the back there’s a wonderful garden full of Thai herbs and plants that have been specially imported to make the ointments and oils. The spa is a real treat and is definitely worth a visit.
Cyclists who like to go ‘off-road’ should look no further than AXS (www.argansports.com), a Marrakech-based bicycle company which offers touring, distribution, retail, and soon, a café. Ideal for ex-pats who are looking for an alternative way to explore Morocco, or for visitors who are keen for an adrenaline-filled trip.
Tours include the easy, beginner-level ‘Magical Marrakech’ tour, which is an hour and a half cycling past the King’s palace, the Medina and the Djeema-El-Fna where tour members stop to drink some of the best freshly-squeezed orange juice in the world.
Or, for something more adventurous, there’s the ‘intermediate to advanced’ graded full day tour of the Ouirgane Valley in the High Atlas Mountains. Two-wheels are a great way to get up close to Berber Villages and the tour focuses on “off-road” trails around Asni. Leg-wobbling maybe, but certainly spectacular!
Keep up with their blog here: http://blog.argansports.com/