Experts' Choice riads in the medina of Marrakech

These 11 riads are the best of the best in the heart of the city.

by Michael Carl Budd

The medina of Marrakech is its beating heart.  Behind the Almoravid ramparts that demarcate this historic center of the city, you'll find some of the most sumptuous and atmospheric riads on offer.  Riads, traditional houses arranged around central courtyards, are a hallmark of the medina where they proliferate.  They vary considerably in quality and value, but sticking with our Experts' Choice list, you'll find the one for you.  The best of them all just may be Riad Farnatchi, which Frommer's calls "Chic, intimate, and luxurious".  For something on a yet grander scale, there's the ultra-luxe Royal Mansour, commissioned by the king of Morocco himself.  Best if you have a royal budget at your disposal.  Dar les Cigognes and Riyad el Cadi, meanwhile, offer good value for the riad experience.  In the medina, there's a riad to match just about everyone's taste and price point.  Let our experts guide you to yours.

Riad Farnatchi 91

2 Derb el Farnatchi, Rue Souk el Fassis

With the feel of an exquisite private house, but the facilities and service of a renowned luxury hotel, Riad Farnatchi stands out in the middle of the Medina.

- Oyster

La Villa des Orangers - Hotel 87

6 rue Sidi Mimoun

This property has all the understated glamour and class you'd expect from a Relais & Chateaux hotel.

- Fodor's

La Maison Arabe 88

1 Derb Assehbe

With ivy-strewn courtyards, antique-slung corridors, and open fires crackling in cedarwood salons, La Maison Arabe is the epitome of Moroccan elegance.

- Frommer's

El Fenn 87

Derb Moullay Abdullah Ben Hezzian

This sublime 21 suite riad is a perfect combination of Asian glamour and pedigreed European-style creature comforts.

- Condé Nast Traveler

Royal Mansour Marrakech 86

Rue Abou Abbas el Sebti

The King of Morocco spared no expense when he commissioned the Royal Mansour to be built... resulting in a sprawling, gilded palace that truly earns its royal title.

- Oyster

Dar Les Cigognes 86

108 Rue DE Berima

Today, that house has been transformed by architect Charles Boccara into one of the most opulent hotels in town.

- Insight Guides

Riad Kniza 85

34 Derb l'Hotel

Tucked away in Marrakesh’s ancient medina, this 18th-century riad comprises 11 expansive residences oriented around several open-air courtyards.

- Travel + Leisure

Riad 72 82

72 Arset Awzel, Bab Doukkala

Wrapped around a central courtyard brimming with banana trees, Riad 72 hotel is an art-school version of a traditional Moroccan house in Marrakech's medina district.

- Mr & Mrs Smith

Riyad El Cadi 82

86, 87 Derb Moulay Abdul Kader

This former ambassador's retreat offers peace and seclusion around the corner from the brouhaha of Djemaa el-Fna.

- The Telegraph

Riad Joya 79

Hay Mouassine

This three-and-a-half-pearl riad bills itself as a “boutique hotel of timeless beauty and seductive atmosphere” -- and it delivers on both counts.

- Oyster

Riad Dar Anika 80

Riad Zitoun Kedim No 112

Anika is Arabic for "elegant" and is an accurate description for this British-owned riad

- Frommer's

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