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“Not the sanctuary we expected”
Review of Riad Laora

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Riad Laora
Ranked #304 of 1,168 Marrakech B&B and Inns
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 9 March 2016

The hotel whilst nice is fairly hard to find. On arrival we were harassed by a group of men demanding 200 dirham for walking us 5 metres down the road even though we told them we didn't want their help. The woman working in the hotel opened the door for us and let us in, but stood there without closing the door while the five men shouted continuously at us in the doorway. Being two young girls, this wasn't the welcome we'd have expected.

Once in the hotel the woman on duty took our passports for the night as the manager wasn't there to check us in (we arrived at 11pm).

Avoid buying water from the hotel as it a quarter of the price in the shop outside (6 dirham). The hotel offers meals and excursions but we didn't take any as we thought they were expensive.

On our final morning we agreed to share a taxi to the airport with another couple from the hotel. The manager made this into a big problem, upped the price and from then on was hostile towards us.

Overall, the hotel is quite nice. We enjoyed the roof terrace (which you can have breakfast on) but be warned about frosty behaviour from staff.

  • Stayed: February 2016, travelled with friends
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
1  Thank Lauren D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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27 - 31 of 150 reviews

Reviewed 10 February 2016

We recently stayed a few days at Riad Laora, and had a wonderful experience. The decor was superb, matched only by the willingness of the small staff to do all they could to make our stay outstanding. Meals were prepared by a gifted cook, and beautifully served, and the manageress went out of her way to help us find our way around Marrakech. I would not hesitate to recommend this Riad for a gentle stay in Morocco, the only drawback was the persistence of the youths outside, hoping to beg some kudos - once they are dealt with, the holiday is there for the taking!

  • Stayed: February 2016, travelled as a couple
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
2  Thank grosves
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 7 January 2016

I stayed at this hotel for two nights to experience Marrakech on my own. The hotel is located about 15 minutes from Jamaa el-Fna. In other words, it's quite centrally located, and a nice base for exploring the interesting parts of Marrakech. It's hard a bit to hard to find, as it's located on a kind of random side street in the Medina. Laora is not the only riad with this kind of location though; The medina is a labyrinth and you WILL get lost. But you'll find the way back, one way or another. That's a part of the experience!

There is a pack of very annoying kids that will chase you (I asked the other guests about this) all the way to the hotel door, begging for you money. These kids are very provocative. They even started kicking me when I refused to give them money on my second time back to the hotel. The only way I could get rid of them after that was to be very strict and tell them to stay right where they are and don't follow me, right at the moment they start chasing me. By strict, I mean look really angry and shout at them. I highly recommend that you do the same. Do NOT let these kids follow you. They will not stop nagging until you enter the hotel, regardless of the amount of money you give them.

The riad and it's rooms are beautiful. They have a nice, exotic atmosphere that's worth experiencing. I have no complaints as for the cleanliness.

Don't expect to have much privacy at this hotel. As it's a riad, all the rooms are facing a "courtyard" (for a lack of a better word) with a nice kitchen and living room, and the doors are "paper thin". So, if anyone is the common areas, you will hear them talk, they will hear you talk - type, or even use the toilet.

As a solo traveller this model might good thing, as the common areas leaves opportunities to meet new people. I had quite a few interesting conversations myself, from people around the world.

The staff is ok, but, for reasons I'd like to reflect on, I never felt at ease when staying at this hotel. Here's why:

The hotel claims to have good english speaking representatives, but that's not really the case. They didn't seem to be comfortable with talking to me at all. I was mostly ignored by the staff, contrary to the french speaking guests. They refused to let me lock the door to my room, so I had to leave my 1500€ laptop and camera in their care.

Moreover, they do not give you a key to the outer door. You have to knock on the door or ring the doorbell and hope that someone opens the door. I asked Hassan (hotel staff) how I can get in at night, and he told me I had to be back by 23:00 (preferrably 22:00) so that he can open the door for me. So basically, I felt like I've paid to live at a hotel that demands I'd be home by nighty-night time. When I told his manager about this the day after, she told me that this is not true, and that I could of course come in at any time. I don't know whether this was due to Hassans' preferations or a communication problem, but nevertheless, it was a weird experience.

The second thing is their lack of proactivity. It's up to you to ask for information. This could be as simple as "do you have a rooftop balcony?", "what's in the 30€ dinner you are asking me to order?", and so on. I think this is due to their lack of confidence in english, and not a bad service attitude.

The third thing is that the hotel staff talks you into signing up to ridiculously overpriced services (ehm.. Ripping you off, basically). I was in an overwhelmed mood when I checked in and said yes to a 35€ tour (which basically was a french-only speaking taxi driver dropping you off at four sites - 2 hours) and 15€ dinner in the hotel (which was nice, but expensive for morocco). Since euros are not the currency in Morocco, the staff is happy to give you Dirham-conveted prices on demand, where the conversion is severly given in their favor. My guess is that this is their core business model - cheap hotel, expensive services. My advice? Refuse their offers, and get them for a third of the price elsewhere.

All in all: Good facilities with poor privacy, good service if you speak french, but stay away from any services apart from the room.

  • Stayed: January 2016, travelled solo
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Service
3  Thank KPABooga
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 25 December 2015

This riad is beautiful. The central courtyard is small wonderfully decorated, the details, mosaics, decor...all new and Moroccan inspired. The room and bathroom are gorgeous as well, unique and beautiful. We LOVED this hotel but unfortunately, we were unable to get a good night's rest because of the hard bed, and the neighbors (particularly if your room is on the third terrace floor). The staff is friendly but they are so desperate to get paid that you have to basically pay everything days prior to your check out. Also, we were made to feel like we are being rushed out of there and cheated in one way or another. We paid the room and tax fees through expedia and upon mentioning this to Samira and Hassan, they insisted that those taxes are different...yadda yadda, we were cheated in to paying 2.5 euros per person per night (again). We just HAD to pay it because they wouldn't drop it. It's all tactics and it really leaves a bad taste in your mouth. I honestly don't know if the staff is doing this on purpose to milk it as much as possible, or maybe they just don't know any better, but they really do come off as seedy and pushy and just not trust worthy. To add to it, we were constantly questioned about our plans, where are we going, when do we leave, what our program is. You have to leave your room key with them so it made us feel uneasy with them knowing about our whereabouts as it would give them an opportunity to go in and go through our things, which, unfortunately is something we feared during our travels in Morocco. Other than that though, this Riad is a perfect place to stay in Marrakech and if you are careful and wary of the staff and making sure your belongings are secure, it's an amazingly unique and lovely experience.

  • Stayed: December 2015, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Service
3  Thank Maysa J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 31 December 2013

We arrived early evening to be greeted by a pack of youths intent on 'helping' us with our bags the three short steps from the taxi to the riad. Once inside the youths then proceeded to shout at us for money. They had one foot inside the door and the young man in the riad did nothing to stop this. It was very very intimidating. Eventually I dragged my husband away from the reception area with our bags and the door was shut. Once inside we found they had stolen my husbands wallet. Thankfully I had just changed all of our money at the airport and had put it in my handbag! They got away with £5 and some change. Within five minutes the youths were back at the door saying they had found the wallet and again demanding money. Again the riad man did nothing to stop this. I gave them short shrift and again moved away from the door. This was not at all the welcome we had expected and it seemed that this happened every time there were new arrivals over the next day or so. We were so shocked and intimidated we were frightened to leave the riad after dark as we had not given up any money we didn't know what they would do.

As for the riad the aubergine suite was lovely and everywhere was lovely and clean. Breakfast consisted of bread and jam each morning with tea and coffee and orange juices hitch we didn't think was worth the money. The room was very cold but they found us a small radiator which did the trick. We had hot water on the first morning but the next day we had none it was fixed by the afternoon of the day after that. Then we had a power cut of around two and a half hours that night.

The experience of the first night stopped us from venturing out for two nights but on the third night we got brave and went out. We were sorry we had allowed the boys to make us feel scared as the square was amazing if a bit intimidating! We didn't try the food in the square but we wish we had now. One of the boys harassed us on our return and again got a foot in the door but we ignored him and went straight to our room, yet again not helped by the riad lad.

We had booked for seven nights but We actually left after three nights and paid for another flight to come home. We had booked it for new year and to celebrate my 50th birthday but the experience with the youths on the first night put us off really. Perhaps we would have been ok if that hadn't happened - I'm not sure though. I don't think it's a place to stay more than a few nights as there's not a lot to do really. I don't think we will return in a hurry although it was an experience!

  • Stayed: December 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
2  Thank Paula D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Riad Laora

Address: 1 Derb Mqqdem | Arset Loughzail, Marrakech 40008, Morocco
Region: Morocco > Marrakech-Tensift-El Haouz Region > Marrakech
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Restaurant Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #304 of 1,168 B&Bs / Inns in Marrakech
Price Range: $57 - $131 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Riad Laora 3.5*
Number of rooms: 7
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Riad Laora Hotel Marrakech

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