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Dar les Cigognes Riad in Marrakech


Cigognes is French for storks, and at sundown each evening the great birds can be seen wheeling in the skies above the city of Marrakech. They also nest atop the walls of the ruined 16th Century Badi Palace, in the shadow of which is this Marrakech boutique hotel. originally a wealthy merchant's home, it dates in part back to the 17th Century.

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It has been beautifully and sensitively restored with walls of white and muted tones that serve to highlight the fine carved dark wood details around the central courtyard.

There are three rooms and two suites ranged off an upper gallery, all drawing on the rich cultural heritage of Moorish art and decoration with particularly fine delicate carved plasterwork.

On the ground floor are a dining room and small library stocked with books on Morocco in a variety of languages, and there is a rooftop garden terrace with views across the old city.

Guests enjoy complimentary fruit plate on arrival. Beds are turned down each evening and, on colder nights, a hot water bottle is put into each bed. All rooms are double bedded.

Dar Les Cigognes was designed to make its guests feel at home. The public spaces are sufficiently numerous to allow guests to feel a sense of privacy. When entering the riad, one passes first through a chicane. This is a typical design feature of Moroccan urban dwellings to underline the separation of the outside from the inside. The chicane is made of three small rooms with vaulted ceilings, each carved with a different motif. In the main courtyard, four large columns soar to the roof. Dark stained cedar wood balustrades and beams line the corridors and open to the sky.

The Dar Les Cigognes runs an early evening cooking class during which you cook your own main meal ... more details.

If you prefer to relax, the spa and treatment rooms are prefect. A thirty foot ceiling and carved stucco windows with coloured glass provide space in which to enjoy a massage, pedicure, manicure, henna tattoo, facial, waxing, or other beauty and relaxation treatment. The masseurs and masseusses are professionally trained. You can even have a Henna tattoo done. A hammam and jacuzzi are also available.

Free Summer Night

Book two nights, stay for three between 1 June and 30 September 2009