by Karishma Pranjivan
I was overwhelmed with excitement the moment we booked our holiday to Marrakech. It had always fantasied about visiting Morocco. Seeing so many photos, films, and hearing family and friends talk about their second-to-none memories and experiences there, I couldn’t be happier to finally arrive and make some of my own.
We stayed at hotel La Sultana; a beautiful riad (courtyard house) located in the Medina; the heart of imperial Marrakech. A member of the Small Luxury Hotels of the World, this stunning hotel, overlooking the Atlas Mountains and Saadian Tombs, did not disappoint. Comprised of 28 rooms with only 100 staff members, the level of service was impeccable, I have never felt more at home in a hotel. The extraordinary architecture of the hotel was to die for, the whole hotel epitomized meticulous Moroccan craftsmanship and ornamentation. As soon as I entered I felt as though I had just stepped into an ancient Sultan’s palace. What was most intriguing about the hotel was that it encompassed four different riads, which had its own associations and atmosphere. Riad Saadia was reminiscent of Old Fez and embodied a Moorish design to the courtyard and suites. Riad Scheherazade embodied the lushness of the African Savannah, with the salons and suites decorated in a Senegalese style. Riad Bahia was ours, and encompassed white stucco work with black accents (of Spanish influence); a minimalist decor with gorgeous multi-coloured lanterns and a small plunge pool. And finally Riad Sabah, which comprised of the fiery red hues of the brickwork juxtaposed with intense Majorelle blue accents, creating a South American feel. Morocco is such a mixing pot of different cultures and people, which is what makes it all the more unique. Whether it be the architecture, cuisine, or cultural practices, Morocco Embodies an amalgam of French, Spanish, Arabic, African, and South American influences.
Having my first Hammam bath experience at La Sultana’s breathtaking spa was unforgettable. Feeling as though I had just entered the sensuous world of the Haram. Illuminated by lanterns, the interior of the spa area is a vibrant crimson marble with large pillars rising from a stunning turquoise pool. It was the epitome of relaxation, rejuvenation, and beauty.