Morocco. A land of exotic spices, heady scents and gorgeous vistas.
We were so excited to be invited to visit Le Palais Paysan in Marrakesh (apart from the 6 am flight time!) and couldn’t wait to explore.
A thirty-minute drive from Marrakesh leads you to a unique spot. To get there, we had to travel along a pretty rural road, but those authentic dirt trail potholes and dusty tyre tracks were soon forgotten about as we laid eyes on our destination.
Away from the bustling markets and busy streets lies Le Palais Paysan. The juddering journey was worth it! Nestled within a seven-hectare estate, this is a remarkable building and gorgeous hotel.
My breath was taken away as we were led through the grounds of the hotel. The landscape is picture perfect with manicured lawns, beautiful rose gardens and winding paths that beckon you to explore and absorb the gorgeous views.
A tempting prospect, but, travel-weary, we were keen to see our rooms and find out more about what the hotel had to offer. I made a mental note to visit these meandering paths later in my visit to take in the rolling vistas and heavenly scented gardens – which I did, it was a gorgeous wander!
A warm welcome
We were warmly welcomed – literally! The heat was a touch over 40⁰C, and we were brought amazing refreshing smoothies and the most exquisite cold rose scented towels. With the rose gardens right outside, the petals that adorned the towels were as fresh as could be. It was the perfect welcome and an utter relief after our journey.
After arrival, we were shown to our rooms – gorgeous, comfortable spaces. Mine had a patio leading straight to the gardens and with an awe-inspiring view of the majestic Atlas mountains. The interior design is nearly as spectacular as the views themselves and the attention to detail is superb. Rattan rugs, attractive wrought metal lamp stands and an awesome feature piece of art – a bright pink feather creation adorned my wall, striking against the neutral, calm tones of the room
Learning about the hotel
We were given the opportunity to get to know the owners a bit better and find out more about the stunning hotel and location.
The owners have a passion for Morocco and, unlike some of the historic hotels we visit, had themselves built this one from the ground, combining contemporary features whilst making it fit into the rustic backdrop. Using traditional and rural techniques, owner Philippe Taburiaux built a true palace – an oasis of peace.
What’s on offer at Le Palais Paysan?
The hotel is really well equipped. A swimming pool with a gorgeous, mysterious dark tiled floor, a lovely restaurant with a delicious menu and a totally blissful spa are all available onsite, and the hotel also offers great packages for golf breaks. There are some excellent greens around Marrakesh, and the hotel takes care of everything for you.
They also cater for weddings and events. With the mountains as your backdrop, this would be a fabulous venue for a wedding. The hotel takes care of everything – flowers, music, photography, even a traditional henna ceremony and dancers too and will coordinate the day exactly to your wishes. You just need to choose your dress and turn up! The hotel can cater for up to 350 guests but are perfectly equipped for smaller, more intimate celebrations as well. A sun drenched wedding here would be simply heavenly.
…And then there’s the spa. I was treated to a traditional Hammam or Turkish bath – a treatment that cleanses, exfoliates and ultimately, relaxes. The fragrances were gorgeous and the treatment simply divine.
There’s also a massage room in the spa, as well as a Jacuzzi, which overlooks the scenic countryside and out to the Atlas Mountains.
Meeting the locals
Day two dawned, and after a traditional Moroccan breakfast (no cornflakes here, I’m afraid!), our group of travellers headed out to a Berber village to see the area and meet the locals.
Time for tea
After visiting the school and chatting with the people, we headed back to the hotel for a spot of tea. Not just any kind of tea, however, we were treated to a traditional tea ceremony. What could be more special than choosing your very own selection of herbs for a unique blend? Well, when the herbs are picked straight from the garden! Aromatic lavender, sage, and rosemary, as well as a myriad of other herbs, were on offer to create a beautifully sweet tea. The ceremonial preparation and presentation of our tea used a special, ornate tea pot and waiters showed us how they poured the tea from a height to maximise the flavour.
Chef for a day
A cooking class followed, and we prepared our lunch of chicken with garlic in a Tagine pot – traditionally used in Morocco for cooking. An array of richly coloured and gorgeously aromatic spices was laid out for us and we prepared the meal together – such fun! Our teacher had once been the chef to Pierce Brosnan’s sister, and we thoroughly enjoyed our professional lesson, before eating the delicious food and then heading off to relax by the pool with a few cocktails.
Dinner was served – traditional and again, delicious. It was lovely to breathe in the serenity of the countryside we overlooked whilst enjoying our food.
Breakfast and home
The hotel prides themselves on the comfort of the beds – and they are right too! Another comfortable night’s sleep gave way to an early breakfast of bread, pastries, houmous and omelettes and then our flight home.
There is so much to do in Marrakesh, it would be a perfect location for a destination wedding and honeymoon. The hotel itself offers a whole range of suggestions for activities and will help organise excursions for guests. Whether you want to explore the markets, take a camel ride or learn Arabic calligraphy, Le Palais Paysan will help you make the most of your visit.
We had such a brilliant time – the scenery is stunning, the hospitality outstanding and the hotel itself was a little haven of peace with stunning views – an unrivalled setting.
If you’re not already totally convinced, here’s what other guests have said about Le Palais Paysan…
“We were so well looked after from the moment we arrived to the moment we left.”
“Everything is perfect. The landscape and views are amazing. The rooms, facilities and pool are outstanding. The restaurant is simple and very good. The staff is kind and very helpful. This is the paradise on earth!”
“If you want to relax, have nice views and great service, look no further than Le Palais Paysan.”
Le Palais Paysan Douar Akrich Route d’Amizmiz, km 20 40 000 Marrakech