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Riad | The wonderful Moroccan guest houses

A riad is a traditional Moroccan house with a garden on the inside. This inner courtyard acts as a sanctuary and respite from the outside world. Beautiful tile work, plants, and water features commonly grace this space, giving you a real feeling of peace and quiet.

While these houses or palaces were originally for the wealthier of society, many have now been turned into guest houses. Rather than a large hotel, these houses are run more along the lines of bed & breakfast or boutique hotel establishments.

These are incredible places to stay because they give a genuinely Moroccan experience. Riads are known for being exquisite displays of intricate Moroccan architecture. Everywhere you look, you can see the beautiful, hand laid tile work Morocco is associated with. Continue reading to learn more about Riads in Morocco and their amazing features.

Where can you find a riad?

riad in Marrakesh

Riads are found all over Morocco, but Riads for example in the old city of Marrakesh give visitors a real opportunity to return to the Middle Ages and enjoy a unique experience. Indeed, residence in Riads is one of the reasons to travel to Morocco.

The streets in the old cities of Morocco have been built as part of a historic castle, with narrow stone corridors, and most of the streets look identical, that is why it is best for first-time visitors to arrange to meet a Riad's representative either at the airport or at a pre-arranged place outside of the old city so that the representative can guide you safely to the Riad.

The food in Riads

The food in Riads

A breakfast is included when staying at the Riad, and it is usually Moroccan pastries, fruits, bread, and mint tea.

Dear traveler, you should know that few Riads only have full-service restaurants. Therefore, guests are required to inform the staff in the morning if they wish to dine at the Riad that evening to give enough time to the chef to purchase the ingredients and prepare the dinner. The most popular dishes in a Riad include meat Tagine with spices, grilled meat, couscous, and etc...

Relaxation in Riads

Relaxation in Riads

A common feature found in every Riad is a small or a medium size plunge pool, usually built on the central patio or on the roof. Some of them are more about showing than swimming, but they can be a fun place to relax at on a hot Moroccan day. Note that most dive pools aren't heated, so the water is often cold.

A Riad usually has private bathrooms that guarantee a feeling of relaxation, and many Riads also include private spa-focused resorts where guests can get health treatments.

Rooms decor in Riads

Rooms decor in Riads

When it comes to rooms decor, the level of luxury in a Riad's guest rooms vary from budget-friendly to luxurious, but there are some common features found in almost all of room. The rooms are generally built around a central patio, with windows overlooking the interior of the building, meaning that the rooms on the ground floor are usually subject to noise generated by the other guests. The higher-level rooms have semi-private interior balconies and are quieter, free Wi-Fi is common, but TVs are not.

The rooms are typically decorated with hanging lanterns, rich and colorful textiles, carved wood and handwoven carpets are commonly used items. The private bathrooms generally consist of concrete walls and ornate tile work.

Other things to consider:

  • Arabic and French are the two most spoken languages ​​in Morocco.

  • The Riads are often owned by individuals and the staff are usually very friendly.

  • The word Riad means “Garden” in Arabic.