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Hotel Highlights

  • Unabashed Moroccan decadence that’s fit for a film star
  • Four enticing restaurants and four buzzing bars
  • Central location near Koutoubia Mosque and Djemaa el Fna

Overview

The opulent, Moorish-inspired La Mamounia hotel in Marrakech elevates Moroccan style to radiant, royalty-worthy heights. Surrounded by cultivated gardens, this elegant palace – with its dramatic drapes and plush sofas – has earned nods of approval over the years from notable guests including Winston Churchill. A recent refurbishment called on luxury-lifestyle experts and award-winning chefs to up the pampering even further.

Smith Extra

Here's what you get for booking La Mamounia with us:

Free airport transfers from Marrakech airport.

Special offers

Exclusive rates, packages and special offers at La Mamounia

'La Mamounia in advance'

Facilities

View Gallery
La Mamounia hotel – Marrakech – Morocco

Need To Know

Rooms

209, including 71 suites.

Check–out

12 noon (flexible subject to availability and possibly a charge). Earliest check-in, 3pm.

Rates

Double rooms from $481.54 (MAD4,000), excluding tax at 10 per cent. Please note the hotel charges an additional local city tax of MAD49.50 per person per night on check-out.

More details

Rates do not include the lavish buffet breakfast of home-made jams and pastries, fresh fruit and juices, cured meats and fish, and hot dishes (Dh380 a person).

Also

La Mamounia’s immaculate marble and mosaic spa is an opulent setting for a treatment, all ornate ceilings and arched columns. Shiseido products sit alongside the hotel’s signature unguents: black soap, Ghassoul clay, Argan oil, rose water and orange blossom water. Pick from three hammams, nine treatment rooms, six outdoor massage cabins, an indoor pool, and a hair salon headed up by Jean-Michel Faretra.

At the hotel

Gardens, spa with hammam and beauty salon, gym, tennis courts, ping pong table, library (including CDs and DVDs) and free WiFi throughout. In rooms: flatscreen TV, iPod dock, minibar, free bottled water and bespoke bath products by Olivia Giacobetti.

Our favourite rooms

Book a Classic or Deluxe Room according to preferred view: Koutoubia Mosque, the gardens or the Atlas Mountains (of course, rooms on the higher floors have the best perspectives). The suites are stunning, but we have soft spots for two in particular. First up, the very English Churchill Suite: the prime minister’s favourite room, with a Chesterfield desk and distressed leather sofa. (Churchill’s hat is also a permanent feature.) For a more feminine feel, book the Baldaquin Suite; a romantic cream and white expanse with a king-size bed topped with a lavish canopy of ruched fabric. The suite also has a decadent but cosy sitting area and a balcony with garden views.

Poolside

Set amid the gardens and flanked by palm trees, the vast and glittering pool is decorated with fish-scale tiles.

Packing tips

Kaftans, Cavalli and couture.

Also

All rooms come with a private terrace, meaning smokers can light up outside. Book a Suite or the Riad and enjoy additional in-room treats: fresh flowers, fruit, pastries, Moroccan wine and champagne.

Children

Smith Junior is welcome. Extra beds (Dh800 a night for children under the age of 12) and free cribs are available. Babysitting with a local nanny can be arranged for Dh100 an hour (request upon booking). Under-16s cannot use the hotel's spa.

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Eco‐friendly

Fresh, organic produce is plucked from the hotel’s vegetable garden; solar power is used.

Food & Drink

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Hotel Restaurant

La Mamounia has four, two of them (Le Français and L’Italien) boasting Michelin stars. Le Français is slightly more formal: marble columns, oversized lampshades and swathes of heavy fabric. L’Italien is moodier, with low lighting and rich ruby, claret and aubergine hues. Alternatively, crunch along the soft gravel path that leads to Le Marocain, where local cuisine is served to the tune of live Moroccan music, or feast on shared platters poolside at the laid-back Le Pavillon de la Piscine. Sweet-tooths will love Le Menzeh, a little hut in the gardens that serves up sugary delicacies such as macaroons and homemade ice-cream cornets.

Hotel Bar

Each restaurant has a bar area to match: Le Bar Italien is a stylish setting for martinis, Le Bar Pavillon de la Piscine is a shaded spot with the pool in reach and Le Bar Marocain comes into its own at night – sit on the rooftop with a pre-dinner cocktail and admire the Atlas Mountains. Then there’s the tiled courtyard, where mint tea and cognac can be enjoyed with the sound of the water fountains trickling in the background (and, if you’re lucky, the thrum of the Moroccan guitar).

Last orders

Dinner is dished up between 7pm and 11pm; drinks are served at the bar from 11am–1am.

Room service

The 24-hour room service includes options from the restaurant menus.

Smith Insider

Dress code

Beach glam (denim and silks will do) for Le Pavillon de la Piscine – of course, if you’d rather don something fabulous, you’ll be in good company. When it comes to the remaining restaurants, ‘glamour, glamour, glamour’ is the mantra.

Top table

Eat out on L’Italien’s terrace by candlelight. On chiller nights at Le Français, tables close to the window are ideal. Grab a table with a full Atlas Mountain vista at Le Marocain; as close to the pool as possible at Le Pav

Local Guide

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La Mamounia hotel – Marrakech – Morocco
Eat, drink, see, do: local favourites and more…

Worth getting out of bed for

Wannabe Nadals should take to the hotel’s clay courts. International tennis champion Henri Leconte hosts international tournaments at the hotel throughout the year; so you may be playing in the presence of greatness. If the courts are in use, stake out the ping pong table. Ask La Mamounia to organise some excursions for you: options include hot-air ballooning in the Atlas Mountains, a tour of Berber villages or personal shopping. Two of Marrakech’s most famous sights – Koutoubia Mosque and Djemaa el Fna – are only a five-minute walk away from the hotel. Wander into Djemaa el Fna at night to admire the acrobats and snake-charmers and sample local cuisine from the bustling food stalls.

Local restaurants

Dar Moha (+212 (0)524 386400) at 81 rue Dar el Bacha serves up aromatic Franco-Moroccan cuisine: alongside well-balanced tajines and pastilla, there are fusion dishes such as baked scallops and saffron sorbet. Request a table in the walled garden by the pool (reservations are essential). Eat in splendour at Dar Yacout (+212 (0)524 382929) at 79 rue Sidi Ahmed Soussi, Arset Ihiri. This gorgeously grand restaurant has entertained the king of Spain and Will Smith (but not together) so dress to impress. The tasting menu costs €70 a head, including drinks. Be sure to visit Le Fondouk (+212 (0)524 378190) at 55 Souk Hal Fassi, Kat Bennahïd. Dining here is an adventure, from start – being guided down a dusty alley to your table by men in cloaks bearing lanterns – to finish.

+ Enlarge
Medina-side Mamounia gardens

La Mamounia

Avenue Bab J'did, Marrakech, Morocco, 40 040

Planes

Marrakech Menara Airport is a 15-minute drive away.

Trains

Marrakech station is 10 minutes away by car, with an ONCF service connecting to Casablanca, Rabat, Fes and Tanguer (www.oncf.ma).

Automobiles

Rather than being burdened with a car, it makes far more sense to rely on the hotel transfers and taxis – the hotel is perfectly placed for exploring Marrakech’s main sights, and this is best done on foot (no cars are allowed in the Medina).

Reviews

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La Mamounia hotel – Marrakech – Morocco

Anonymous review

by Grace Dent , All you can tweet

Sitting pretty upon grand leather sofas in Mamounia’s candlelit Jacques Garcia-designed lobby, sipping cool glasses of almond milk and nibbling dates, I rather wished all hotel check-in experiences could be so otherworldly. As Mr Smith passed on details about how I, Mrs Smith, would like the next morning’s Royal Hamman spa treatment, my suitcases vamooshed by a troop of robed fez-weari…
Read more

La Mamounia

Anonymous review by Grace Dent, All you can tweet

Sitting pretty upon grand leather sofas in Mamounia’s candlelit Jacques Garcia-designed lobby, sipping cool glasses of almond milk and nibbling dates, I rather wished all hotel check-in experiences could be so otherworldly. As Mr Smith passed on details about how I, Mrs Smith, would like the next morning’s Royal Hamman spa treatment, my suitcases vamooshed by a troop of robed fez-wearing bellboys, I lounged in a pleasant fug (Mamounia’s signature scent was created by world-renowned perfumier, Olivia Giacobetti), watching European high-society meander past and idly speculating whether the bijoux Gucci outlet did those pumps in their size.

Marble pillars, bold red and white lanterns, vases laden with fresh flowers and a water fountain sprinkled with petals… A weekend spent in the lobby with just a Moroccan throw to snuggle, waiter-service Moroccan-rose deliveries from the nearby Churchill Bar would have been a sublime holiday on its own. Mr Smith, ever orthodox, insisted we explore the rooms.

In the Moorish-style boudoirs, you can't help but want to touch the furnishings: studded leather headboards in orange, purple and beige, hand-painted wooden doors, thick rugs and throws from the Atlas Mountains. We stayed on Mamounia’s first floor in a room luxurious, ornate and passionately Moroccan, hand-crafted mashrabiya shutters, cool white linen, stucco’d bathroom, vivid, lovingly laid tilework.

As Mr Smith ran a deep bath, availing himself of the sumptuous booty of Mamounia toiletries, I dealt with the diligent squad of housekeeping staff determined to bring gifts. My first instinct was to flip the Do Not Disturb sign, but after the fresh cherries, the still-warm cupcakes and the windblown peaches, I made an executive decision that being ‘bothered’ was rather lovely.

Now, as Mr Smith bathed, I retired to our large balcony overlooking neatly pruned gardens with a copy of Vogue and a large G&T. Distant call-to-prayer cries and the whispery buzz mopeds reminded me that Friday night medina in Marrakech was within strolling distance. After darkness we drifted down to Le Bar Italien and installed ourselves on the decadent saffron-velvet chairs, squeaking with delight that not only were we allowed to smoke a cigarette indoors, like back in the olden days when the pair of us met, but the staff were delighted to fetch packets on a silver tray.

Several wholly elegant flutes of champagne and half a dozen lobby-pianist cover-songs later, we slinked into Mamounia’s Baroque interior Italian restaurant for a pricey yet perfect feast of spaghetti don alfonso, langoustines, zucchini ravioli and slices of sweet chocolate pizza. A word of warning: don’t visit Mamounia with someone you’re ‘quite fond of’ if you don’t want to fall in love. There’s something in the signature scented air here that makes it rather unavoidable…

Do, however, go with someone who loves you for your curves – the poolside breakfast buffet is dreamlike in its scope and setting. We took a table at 9am, surrounded by resting European footballers and WAGs, plump diplomats and well-heeled families, then let the squadron of staff bring coffee, newspapers and iced water. We ate porridge with fresh pomegranate, freshly cooked eggs Florentine from the walk-up kitchen, too many pastries and fruit from the gardens near to where we sat.

After breakfast, Mr Smith and I made a half-hearted nod towards exercise by wandering in the grounds through orange trees, watching tennis matches being elegantly slugged out by residents far more energetic than us. We also got to the bottom of where our vegetables had been sourced from the night before, with a whirl around Mamounia’s private gardens. Jannah, the Islamic concept of paradise, starts with a garden, and so did La Mamounia, which began life as royal flower-filled grounds; a gorgeous gift from a sultan to his son. Today this eight-hectare haven is planted with 700-year-old olive and fruit trees and vivid, perfumed blooms, tended to daily by 30 gardeners.

Fringed by palm trees, the turquoise pool is as regal as the rest, decorated with shimmering fish-scale tiles, surrounded by a neat cavalry of spotless white sun loungers. Exquisitely kept, the pool area is soothingly silent with a discreet army of staff who will check your expression for evidence of ‘want’. While Mr Smith front-crawled off some of the past-24 hours excesses, I curled up on a white lounger with a novel, preparing myself for my afternoon hamman purge in the world-class spa.

Mr Smith and I signed up to take our steam-and-scrub together, fighting off fits of giggles as we were handed small paper pants and each enlisted a masseur and whisked off to separate saunas. My masseuse was a glorious small, squashy Moroccan lady clad in an all in one black swimming costume and flip flops then scrubbed every inch of me, forehead to toes, then moisturised before returning me to Mr Smith for massages.

Giddy and slightly reborn post-hammam, Mr Smith and I left Mamounia for a whirlwind Saturday night in the ancient medina featuring strong coffee, snakes, some dancing and meetings with various local eccentrics, with the obligatory Cafe Arabe stop-off. Our final day was spent restoratively by the pool, drinking mint tea and eating baklava waiting for one of Mamounia’s Jaguars to take us to Menara airport. Mamounia has its own private room in Menara, for those who find meeting the public frightful. It certainly was a drag leaving Marrakech, but this Mr and Mrs Smith know that one day they’ll be back. After all, after opening in 1923, it was soon Churchill’s stay of choice; he called it ‘the most beautiful place in the world’. Who are we to argue?

 

The Guestbook

Reviews of La Mamounia from Smith members

Whenever you book a stay through us, we’ll invite you to comment when you get back. Read the Guestbook entries below to see what real-life Mr & Mrs Smiths have said about this hotel…

BlackSmith

Stayed on

We loved

I liked the location, luxury, staff attentiveness and outdoor pool.

Don’t expect

Smoking being permitted in the Moroccan restaurant was a bit of a shock. I had to request an alternative table.

Rating: 8/10 stars

BlackSmith

Stayed on

We loved

The hotel is huge so there was a lot to explore. The pool was beautiful, and the lovely spa had a fantastic indoor pool and Jacuzzi. We got a double upgrade so we had beautiful views of the mosque and old Marrakech from our room.

Don’t expect

There was a very good spread for breakfast, but I thought €30 a guest was a bit overpriced. Drinks were very expensive too: a Coke was €11 and Baileys with ice was €21!  We were too tired to go out on the last night so we had dinner at the hotel's Italian restaurant. It was great setting next to the pool area, but the food was nothing special and way too overpriced – we wished we'd gone out instead.

Rating: 8/10 stars