Around the World in 80 Pairs of Shoes


May 15, 2013

Hotel Review: Sahara Palace Hotel, Marrakech

I might have joined the party slightly late but I love Sex and the City (thanks to watching the whole box set one winter in the UK) so when I saw the hotel from the second movie I knew I wanted to stay.  Fast forward a few years and a hotel name change, I finally located this Hollywood superstar in Marrakech and made a booking at the Sahara Palace Hotel (formly the Taj Palace Hotel, the name change has confused the locals).


We arrived pretty hot, flustered and dehydrated at the hotel however we had one of the best check ins ever – a cup of Moroccan tea would have made this the best check in as we were pretty parched.  As we arrived late we couldn’t see much of the hotel from the outside however once we stepped inside the hotel we were meet with grandeur on a huge scale!


So are you read for a snoop inside our hotel –

The Sahara Palace Hotel now managed by the Blue Bay Hotels and Resorts Group offer the biggest rooms in Marrakech and I mean they are huge!  (Apologies for G lying across the bed, I will ask him to pose more seductively next time!)


This is just the standard run of the mill hotel room which comes complete with its own balcony…


and huge walk in bathroom and dressing room!


Basically it means you have your own shoe room while on holiday!  I was pretty happy to say the least with the room.


Now we come to the food which is where things started to go wrong…big style!  I will bullet point our issues rather than have a 3000 word rant (which I just deleted!)

  • Dinner was appalling: the food quality was atrocious, there were no gluten free options bar pomme frites and the waiters child was playing around our table annoying us.
  • We decided to go for a drink in the bar and got completely ignored by the four bar staff who were too busy chatting to each other.
  • We tried to order drinks via room service; they understood our request for bottled water however apparently they couldn’t see what our problem was when we were trying to order Coca-Cola!  The water arrived, the Coke didn’t.  G lost the plot as he had a bottle of bourbon he purchased via duty free screaming out to him.
  • Breakfast was appalling – I only had the option of scrambled eggs (which I hate!) and there were no gluten free options offered even though I was told they would be able to cater for this.  I lost the plot – I was bloody hungry as you can imagine!


By this time we were knackered and decided it was time to check out – we live by the three strikes and we check out rule.  After having a discussion with the Duty Manager and the Food and Beverage Manager who all said they would be able to look after us for the remainder of our time at the hotel – we just didn’t believe that they could.

While the hotel is definitely 5 star; the service and management definitely is not!

We are still waiting for the refund that the Duty Manager said he would organise for us and needless to say just proves how badly run this hotel is.


The location of the hotel is right on the outskirts of Marrakech (this was a selling point for us as we just wanted to relax for the weekend) so if you are looking at getting into the Medina to go shopping, this would take approximately 30 minutes but the hotel offers a free shuttle bus (we didn’t have a chance to use this) so it shouldn’t be a problem.


If you are looking for a lively hotel then this isn’t for you as the hotel was empty of tourists and staff – we didn’t see more than 20 people staying at the hotel so if you are after peace and quiet with a great pool then this would be the perfect hotel but just remember to pack a lot of food!


So let’s see how we get on with getting a refund from Sahara Palace Hotel….any guesses how long it will take to get that refund processed?  Kaligo have confirmed that they haven’t received any communication from the Sahara Palace Hotel!


Would I recommend – Not a chance!  While the hotel is stunning, the service lets the whole hotel down.  Blue Diamond are bringing in their management policies over the next month so it might improve…so proceed with caution if booking this hotel.

Ohh and just in case you were wondering…the Atlas Mountains you see in the professional photos have been photoshopped!

Will be interested to hear from anyone that has stayed at the Sahara Palace Hotel in Marrakech?


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