[Morocco: Marrakech] Review: Mandarin Oriental Hotel
Hello Morocco! It was our first time in Africa and we spent a few days exploring Marrakech aka Red City. We stayed at the Mandarin Oriental Hotel which is located 10 minutes from the city center. Our experience with the hotel was luxurious from beginning to end; starting at the airport, we were escorted through customs and security by a fast track service who then led us to our driver. Once we arrived at the property, we were mesmerized by the beautiful landscapes and contemporary designs of the resort which has 54 luxurious villas and 9 spacious suites. Incorporating both Berber and Moorish design influences, every corner of the hotel was just seemingly instagramable.
We stayed in a Mandarin Pool Villa - a 288 sqm one-bed villa with its own courtyard, private pool, jacuzzi, kitchen, living room and fireplace. A contemporary take on a traditional riad (a type of traditional Moroccan house with an interior courtyard), we were in love with all the designs and details in our room.
The first thing we saw after entering our villa was the pool and jacuzzi with sunbeds on one side and sofas on the other.
The fireplace is located in the wall next to the sofas and we had our butler light it up one night since the temperature drop can be quite drastic at night in Morocco.
One of my favorite spots - a lovely alcove adorned with cushions in the courtyard.
The living room area had plenty of sitting space plus a work area, TV, coffee table and a mini bar.
Everyday we would get new complementary traditional snacks on our coffee table.
The bed was incredibly comfortable and the master bedroom opened up to the jacuzzi. Did I mention that there's a TV hidden at the end of the bed?
I loved the attention to details to small things including putting the water bottle in a woven case.
The bathroom was beautifully designed with his and hers vanity sink, round bathtub, steam shower and amenities in a gorgeous mother of pearl box.
Also loved these pointy slippers in Moroccan style!
During our stay, we spent our time during the day exploring the vast grounds of the resort. With two swimming pools, world class spa, and even a petting zoo, there's something to do for everyone.
Even though our villa had its own pool, we still went to swim at the main pool since it was much bigger. Service was prompt as soon as we chose a sunbed with towels and refreshing drinks.
Mandarin Oriental is known for its amazing spas and here it's even better with therapies inspired by local Moroccan traditions. It's the ultimate oasis with treatment suites, hammams, yoga studio, heated indoor swimming pool, fitness center and salon.
I had the Rosy Sensation treatment which included a deep exfoliation of the body and face followed by an envelopment of cream using Moroccan roses and sugar. My therapist told me not to shower that day so my skin can soak up the cream (apparently it's really good for the skin).
After my session was over, I was led to the relaxation room to enjoy a cup of mint tea and stuffed date.
In terms of dining, there are four main options onsite at the hotel - Mes'Lalla, Ling Ling, La Salon Berber and Pool Garden. The hotel has an organic garden onsite so many of the ingredients are sourced from the garden as well as local producers.
Breakfast buffet is served at La Salon Berbere and we always sat outside on the terrace to enjoy the views.
Breakfast included a plethora of dishes including fruits, cheese, juices and bread. On top of that, hot dishes are available to order with both Moroccan and western choices. We opted for the traditional Moroccan pancakes served with argan oil and Khlii tagine (Moroccan preserved meat) - both of which were delicious!
Mes'Lalla serves traditional Moroccan cuisine with a modern twist. We had dinner here one night where we enjoyed a buffet, live cooking stations and our choice of tagine while traditional music is being played by musicians on the terrace.
The other main dining option is Ling Ling by Hakkasan which serves Cantonese food.
Available only seasonally, the Aperitif Lodge is set up on the terrace next to Mes'lalla restaurant in a gorgeous Berber tent where you can enjoy mint tea, Moroccan treats and cocktails while watching the sunset.
Thanks for the amazing hospitality Mandarin Oriental - until next time!
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