Riad Magi, Marrakesh $$$$
Tel: 212 24 42 66 88
Tel: 44 208 834 4747 (U.K.)
Concierge.com's insider take:
If you're watching your dirhams, this unpretentious and friendly six-bedroom riad, in a quiet neighborhood a five-minute walk from the Place Jemaa El Fna, is a fine choice. British owner Maggie Perry opened her establishment in 2001 and has since become something of a local celebrity through her involvement in the community. Her connections to all the right Marrakesh circles means she can open the doors (to the dazzling and famously difficult to reserve Dar Yacout restaurant, for example) that let her clients experience the city as an insider. Heading her capable Moroccan team is Abderrazak, who has worked here since the riad opened in 2001 and speaks excellent English. The rooms are standard-issue tadlakt,in colors ranging from Yves Kleinblue to mint green; all have en suite bathrooms with big soaking tubs. As with most riads, lunches and dinners must be booked ahead and are an additional charge, although a bountiful breakfast served on the pretty terrace is included in the low rate. Recently, Magi has become known for its weekend and weeklong cooking courses that teach the basics of Moroccan cuisine. Like everything else here, the course is delightfully low-key and a great deal of fun. Note that credit cards are not accepted.
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