Royal Mansour


Riad opulence and a celebration of traditional Moroccan design

What’s the vibe? An oasis-like enclave of grandeur tucked behind a towering chiselled archway, just a stone’s throw from Jemaa El Fna. Royal Mansour marries Moroccan design heritage with the international vernacular of modern luxury and heavy classical opulence. Owned by the country’s King and poised amid fragrant manicured gardens, privacy, relaxation and superlative hospitality are the cornerstones of its ethos.

Your key to the door: Airport transfers by way of golden Bentleys set the tone for things to come. Cloistered by the grounds’ pomegranate, palm and olives trees sit 53 private ochre-hued riads. Step through the cyan doorway to reveal a zellij-tiled inner courtyard that undulates across three storeys to a crowning rooftop pool with striking views of the Red City. A marble bathroom, silk-wallpapered bedroom and ornate cedar-clad sitting room complete the space. Beyond the interior walls, a hidden network of staff walkways ensures the discreet delivery of anything from poolside breakfasts to shiny pots of mint tea ready to pour from a height, as per the local custom.

Eating and drinking: Centred on the concept of a medina within the medina, the hotel’s superlative food offering flows from fine destination dining to relaxed alfresco, much of it fuelled by an on-site organic garden. Lauded chef Hélène Darroze – The World’s Best Female Chef 2015 – oversees proceedings at modern French brasserie La Table; sumptuous La Grande Table Marocaine elevates classic Moroccan dishes to lofty heights; and Massimillano Alajmo’s Sesamo –  No.39 in the 2023 Middle East & North Africa’s 50 Best Restaurants list – hones in on Italian cuisine. Flanked by frondescence, Le Jardin seasons Moorish cooking techniques with global influence, serving up late lunches and easy suppers worth lingering over. An art deco bar and moody cigar lounge round it off.

A word on the pools: Sitting aside Le Jardin is a pool so large you’d be forgiven for mistaking it for a lake. Carefully spaced surrounding it are oversized loungers and intimate pavilions with changing rooms and lounge spaces (with daily bookings available for non-guests, too) ensuring halcyon days under the Moroccan sun. Meanwhile, the ethereal spa houses an indoor pool made for post-hammam dips.

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