Plum boutique bolthole brimming with Maroc chic.

A  SYBARITIC CITY RETREAT in the heart of the medina, Zamzam Riad is one of the coolest new addresses in Marrakech. Hidden deep in the old city, it’s a sophisticated yet intimate boutique hideaway.

Zamzam Riad flaunts surprises from the moment you arrive. Enter through a burnished doorway glowing from a Moroccan brass lamp, leaving the medina maze behind in an instant. Step into a courtyard open to the skies, scented with jasmine and shaded by a lofty palm.

Sip a mint tea beneath the Berber tent on the rooftop, with its fabulous views of the snow-capped Atlas mountains, and listen to the call for prayer as the city mosques light up at twilight.

Hit the spot
Deep in the heart of the medina.


Bedrooms are lavishly decorated. There’s the Harem room with its open bathroom, the curved tadelakt bath of the Berber suite, and the gold and black balconied Palm suite.

Be savvy
You’re in a non-touristy, local neighbourhood here – 20 minutes from the main square. 

Be smitten
Style and serenity in a gorgeous riad.

Swishy suites

This former merchant’s house has been restored to its former splendour by owners Emma and Marcus with the help of dozens of local craftsmen. The result is a treat for the eye. Each of Zamzam’s seven exotic bedrooms is individually styled with Berber carpets, luscious fabrics, French and Moroccan antiques and colourful objets d’art, with swish quarters to suit every mood.

We loved the Harem room with its open bathroom, gorgeous Moroccan lights and plum-coloured fabrics. Shades of soft pistachio and pretty hand-made tiles set off the Berber suite, with its curved bath and high vaulted ceilings. Even more lavish is the Palm suite, a masterful space done out in golds, black and burgundy with a red marble bathroom and its own cedar wood balcony.

Alongside all this old-time opulence you’ll also find wi-fi, iPod docks, crisp bedding, fluffy towels, scented candles and drench showers in smooth-walled tadelakt bathrooms.

Laze on the rooftop terrace on a sunbed or have a cooling dip in the petal-strewn plunge pool, heated in winter. And be sure to check out the hammam – all marble and tadelakt, with black olive oil soap for scrubbing – for an indulgent massage or body wrap.

Guests dine fireside in the downstairs salon in the cooler months, or in starlit surrounds beneath the Berber tent on the roof, with its Moroccan sofas and cushions.

Zamzam Riad’s super-helpful owners and their team offer a full concierge service and will be pleased to help arrange transport, daytime picnics, cookery demos and trips into the Atlas mountains. 

Zamzam Riad was reviewed by Room for Romance
Click on any picture to enlarge it and move through the gallery.

Dining in
Zamzam’s fusion of Moroccan and world cuisine wins plenty of plaudits from guests. Cooking makes max use of organic local produce, with seasonal produce sourced daily from the riad’s own garden and olive grove.

Try traditional favourites such as orange and chicken tagine, or spicy swordfish charmoula. Breakfasts are also not to be missed, with homemade pastries, jams and marmalades. Staff will be happy to prepare you a picnic for a day out of town.

Dining out
There are plenty of great restaurants nearby. Favourites include El Fassia for à la carte Moroccan and L’Avenue – a swish restaurant lounge bar – for French dining. Your hosts will be happy to oraganise transport there and back.

Zamzam Riad

What’s cooking?

A fusion of Moroccan and world cuisine – fresh Atlantic fish, organic chicken, lamb coucous and great desserts. Try the home-made chocolate mousse.

Top Table?

On the candlelit rooftop terrace with views of the Atlas mountains.

See & Do
Wander the souks to pick up some bargains, and take in the carnival atmosphere of Djemma el Fna square, with its entertainers, hawkers, herbalists and jugglers. Go a bit more cultural with a trip to the old Islamic school of Madrasa Ben Youssef, take a horse-drawn calèche ride around town or make time for a wander in the Majorelle Gardens.

It’s well worth taking a day trip to the Atlas mountains (donkeys optional).  Less intrepid Indiana Joneses can get their adventure fix at the Marrakech museum.

Whether it’s jewellery, fabrics, leather or fabrics, you’ll find them in the souks. Be prepared to haggle – it’s all part of the fun. You’ll also find some great buys in Zamzam Boutique.

Pamper yourself with a traditional hammam and massage. Zamzam also offers a full range of other treatments, from acupuncture to mud wraps and facial scrubs. You can round everything off with a dip in the pool.

After dark

Sip a drink on the rooftop terrace while the sun sets over the Atlas mountains.


Belly dancers and Berber musicians flock to town in a riot of sound and colour for the Popular Arts Festival.


Rub shoulders with Bollywood stars and check out the latest movie releases at the Marrakech International Film Festival.


Rue Kaa El Machraa, Zaouia El Abbassia, Marrakech


Should you need a car, there is secure car parking just a few minutes away.

Marrakech Central – 5km.

Around EUR 20 from the airport. But we suggest avoiding the scrum and letting Zamzam arrange or a driver to meet you.

Marrakech International –10km. EasyJet flies to Marrakech from London Gatwick and Manchester, while Ryanair flies from London Luton, Bristol and East Midlands.

Rooms and suites
Four rooms, three suites.

Special features
All rooms boast a king sized bed, drench Showers, and a range of authentic Moroccan bath products. Some rooms have a bath as well as a shower. All have a safe and iPod docks, and wi-fi is available.

There is a swimming pool to cool off in (heated in winter), cookery courses by arrangement and even someone to walk you to your taxi.


Rates guide

EUR 116 - 200


Open all year.





Minimum night stay?
Three nights over New Year.

Breakfast is served any time – so get up as late as you like. Look forward to Moroccan yoghurt, local honey, home made jams and pastries and organic eggs.

Room service
Available morning and evening.

Not ideal for small children – but supervised, well behaved youngsters are welcome.


Air conditioning

Yes – all rooms.

Wedding License?

No, but receptions for up to 16 guests can be held.

Eco conscience

Power comes from solar panels and the building materials were mostly sourced locally and made by local craftsmen. Zamzam has solar panels and natural cleaning products are used where possible.

Room for Romance Extra

A complimentary bottle of wine



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