To celebrate one of my best friends finishing her third degree (can we please get a round of applause), we organised a relaxing getaway to Marrakesh.
We wanted a trip that would balance some much-needed relaxation in the sunshine with a chance to get a taste of Morocco’s captivating culture. We booked a 3-day, 3-night trip through Secret Escapes to Al Mendili Kasbah for a bargain £310 each. This price included flights, 3-nights’ accommodation, half board, a 30-minute massage in their hammam and transfers to and from the airport.
If you’re looking for an affordable getaway in tranquil surroundings, Al Mendili might just be the perfect place for you…
Al Mendili is very much off-the-beaten-track. Located down a bumpy road around a 30-minute drive from both the airport and the medina, the accommodation offers its guests the perfect combination of spectacular views across the snow-capped Atlas Mountains with easy access to the city centre.
If you want to be based in the buzz of the city, Al Mendili isn’t for you. However, if you’re looking for a secret escape (soz, couldn’t help myself) with the option to explore Marrakesh as and when you fancy it, it’s a great spot to base yourself.
It’s peaceful, tranquil and homely and we loved the feeling of it being just us, the mountains and the resident peacock.
The grounds of the Kasbah were manicured to perfection. Colourful flower beds and bushes were dotted throughout the garden and blankets of foliage hugged the terracotta walls of the hotel – it was wonderfully Moroccan. The sunbeds scattered around the pool were comfier than my bed at home, the pool area was spotlessly clean and the hammam and tranquil outdoor hot tub were very welcome additions.
It is obvious the owners, Catherine and Alain take a lot of pride in their little oasis.
Our rooms were the perfect balance of comfort, cosiness and character.
All rooms had a terrace with impressive views across the pool area, gardens and Atlas Mountains and the attention to detail in the décor was amazing. Silver sheer fabric framed our squishy beds, rustic golden lamps and candles sat on our bed side tables and traditional Moroccan artwork hung on the walls.
The bathroom was beautifully finished in silver (in keeping with the rest of our room) and had all necessary amenities. However, the bath/shower definitely needed a shower curtain. I spent a lot of my time in the shower trying not to flood the room…
The cost of our stay included two meals a day – breakfast and then either lunch or dinner. Breakfast and lunch were served by the pool or on our balcony and dinner was served on the peaceful rooftop.
We all agreed breakfast was our favourite meal of the day. A gorgeous wake up call of eggs, bread, fruit and pancakes teamed with freshly squeezed juice, excellent coffee and mint tea was the perfect fuel for a day of exploring the souks.
Lunch and dinner were both three courses and were light, fresh and tasty. We were served everything from fish and tagine to omelettes and gazpacho. Although all the food was lovely, we didn’t get a choice of what we were served so if you’re a fussy eater, you might go hungry. We also found we were a little peckish after some meals so filled up on a lot of bread.
Please note: it is definitely important to note that there is no way of getting snacks at the Kasbah so if you can, stock up on snacks (and water!) at a shop beforehand.
The service at Al Mendili was where it really shone. The staff were so welcoming, friendly and attentive. Hamid, the hotel’s taxi driver was an absolute babe. His infectious smile and enthusiasm to talk to us about his country was a real highlight of our trip and Moussain, the lovely gent who served us at lunch and dinner, was lovely. High praise goes to him for putting up with our constant demand for wine.
The owners Alain and Catherine were there during our stay (however, they live in France so aren’t there all year round) and welcomed us to their second home with open arms from the moment we stepped in. None of the staff are fluent in English so prepare to put your finest Franglish to the test.
Overall, I feel our holiday to Al Mendili was very good value. The level of luxury we received for the price we paid was outstanding. Food and drink outside of what was included in our stay was rather pricey so we picked up bottles of water and snacks from a shop in the city to save a bit of dollar. We could get alcohol in the guesthouse between lunch and dinner times but not in between these hours (we were there during Ramadan, which may have affected this) so we were relieved we’d bought some bottles at duty free for those all important afternoon G&Ts on the balcony.
Our Secret Escapes package also included a free 30 minute full body massage in their hammam, which was divine! I would highly recommend a massage here even if it’s not included in your booking as the prices are so reasonable (£20 for half an hour, £40 for 1 hour).
Overall, Al Mendili was the perfect setting for what we wanted – a long weekend of relaxation with a splash of culture thrown in. I would highly recommend staying here if you enjoy accommodation with a relaxed ‘guesthouse’ feel rather than a hotel with someone there to be at your beckon call 24/7. Its setting, hospitality and décor are exactly what you’d hope for from a Kasbah in Marrakesh!
Please note: this is not a sponsored post and, as always, all thoughts and opinions are my own.