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Reviews of Holidays and Hotels in Morocco - Better Homes And Gardens

Fortune Magazine No.5 (March 12, 2001)

Better Homes and Gardens

By Susan Hack

[Text about other countries ...]

The countries of Eastern Europe have castles too, but residence and title issues, uncertain politics, and high seller expectations, based on Western European prices may be reasons to steer clear. As an alternative, an increasing number of castle buyers are heading for Morocco, which has hundreds of ruined Casbahs and neglected merchant's palaces.

"If you've got time and a good lawyer to settle title disputes, you can find amazing properties", says Chris Lawrence of Best of Morocco. "But it's really better to restore a working-class house in the medina in Marrakesh, or to buy a piece of land and build a replica of a 17th century Casbah using local materials and craftsmen." Skilled labour costs about 35 cents an hour, and for $200,000 you can create a fantasy world with pool, courtyard, fountains, mosaic floors, and tadlakt walls. "You can start from scratch and wind up with a palace", says Lawrence. "And the medina is very private, because behind those walls might be a hovel or a palace, and no-one need know."