Hi readers , I’m writing this while sitting on a beautiful white sequins rug in a luxury hotel . To the right of me is a huge bathroom and a walk in shower, to the left of me, my own private pool. Where am I? in Morocco preparing myself for my 5th tagine in 4 days. I am staying at a rustic luxury hotel in the Ourika valley with breathtaking views of the Atlas mountain called Kasbah Bab Ourika .
Why am I in Morocco?
I picked Morocco because I wanted somewhere special to spend my partners 40th birthday celebration . Well to be honest readers, Elisha wanted a shopping spree for her birthday and I knew that was going to be dangerous… so I chose the markets of Marrakech, everything a lady could ever want for cheap cheap prices.
While carrying out my hotel research, I came across a website called secret places and stumbled upon a review about a rustic luxury hotel in the Ourika valley with views of the Atlas Mountains. The minute I saw the Secretplaces landscape pictures I knew I was onto a winner ( plan was to have her staring at the jaw dropping scenery while I take a million food pictures, well that and the hotel would definitely buy me bonus points so that when we hit the markets and I said ‘ baby go crazy’ Elisha would think I was the perfect Gent). I also checked a couple of Tripadvisor reviews and they were pretty positive, so I booked a garden room with a pool without delay.
Why did the sheep cross the road
The first stay in Marrakech was a quaint Riad in the middle of the old part of town. After two days in the hustle and bustle of the medina, it was time to head our luxury hotel in the Atlas mountains. The Kasbah Bab Ourika team arranged a pick up from our Riad to their hotel, an hours drive away. I spent the entire journey chatting to the driver about my previous trips to Morocco and the places I visited without getting my usual car sickness. Elisha true to form spent it reading a novel on her kindle. She did occasionally look up dazed and confused when she saw our car making way for flocks of sheep that had to get to the other side of the valley . She silently freaked out about the location of her birthday hotel and smiled only when traditional scarves and clothes sold by the roadside markets caught her eye.
Did somebody say BBQ.
On entering the luxury hotel a collection of handpicked carpets , cushions , bags, pottery , wooden furniture displayed around reception. I was a little anxious, watching Elisha checking out the for sale items , knowing her suitcase is completely full, and imagining my clothes being left behind to make room for two new rugs. All of the products exhibited in the court yard and throughout the hotel, can be found in their shop ” Mint Tea Lovers , Damian the manager also informed me, that all beautiful rugs were picked up from various Moroccan artisans from the different villages.
We were offered towels to wipe our hands , and given a quick tour . Lunch is served till 15.00 and it was 14.45.When the receptionist said the words BBQ, Elisha and I almost high-fived, dropped our bags in the room and ran to the dining area . The spread of burgers , sausages and chicken skewers on an open grill in front of the valley backdrop was one of the highlights of this trip. The breads , meats and dips were yumm. The buffet was definitely the right way kick off our stay at this rustic luxury hotel in the Atlas Mountains
What makes Kasbah Bab Ourika luxury hotel memorable ?
The beautiful landscape
The quirky antiques and decor
Birthday plan organisation
The customer service at Kasbah Bab Ourika was pretty good. I spoke to Damian and he organised a meeting with the chef (Mohammed ) a day prior to the birthday. Mohammed was very helpful and flexible. He took me through the whole weeks menu and we picked the courses together. The main course was an exceptional lamb tagine with nuts and dates. Dessert ? Birthday cake of course with pineapple upside down cake. I also went for a walk around the grounds with Mohammed as we tried to decide the perfect spot for the meal. We visited the lunch area, gardens, and thought about my courtyard. However, when we reached the rooftop terrace, he looked at me and said this has to be the place.’ You have sunset and an amazing view.’ There was no need to convince me, the place looked magical. Thanks Mohammed
We had a 50 minutes massage at the Spa on her birthday and went for the surprise dinner on the terrace afterwards
The food was pretty tasty with a foodie menu that changed every day . I liked the fact you can eat your meal at different places within the Kasbah .
You can have Breakfast or lunch Alfresco
Fun activities on the grounds of the Kasbah
They also organise treks and day trips to villages , Setti fatma and waterfalls , Monday markets and national parks amongst other activities , however I have an allergy to such healthy stuff so I just stayed on the rounds of the Kasbah during this birthday trip.A fellow blogger called Lozzahthoughts, wrote a review with lovely waterfall pictures about her time in the Atlas Mountains, so check this out for things to get up to in the mountains.
Luxury hotel Garden room with a pool
To Bee or not to Bees
Bees freak me out. I hear the sounds and I pretty much start scanning the area for a quick exit. If you’re having breakfast al fresco, chances are you and your food will make acquaintances with them. We cracked a few jokes with 2 other diners and as soon as one of them heard I was scared of bees, he started telling stories about killer African bees. Just plain evil. Anyways we worked together with the couples to devise a plan of attracting the bees away from us. It revolved around placing jars of honey on empty tables. Now that’s what you call team work.
After a while one of our waiters allayed my fears by showing me there was nothing to worry about. Give that man a medal.
Here’s a video of my trip to Kasbah Bab Ourika
Secretplaces and the Telegraph review was absolutely right and spot on. If you require a romantic rustic luxury hotel with breathtaking atlas mountain views, you will find it difficult finding a place that bests Kasbah Bab Ourika