Dar Kawa is a beautiful five-star accommodation in the heart of the Marrakech medina. The old riad has been restored together with Belgian architect Quentin Wilbaux. The owner, Valerie Barkowski, looked for a way to combine the house’s seventeenth-century Saadian architecture with modern comfort and style, bringing the house firmly into the twenty-first century.
Only traditional materials were used for the restoration and the basic structure of the house was left intact. The decor is deliberately simple, yet authentic, with great attention paid to details, quality and service.
Designed with a blend of traditional Morocco and contemporary international style. Simple yet not sparing, the rooms are comfortable, large and immaculate.
Most of the house is painted in an off-white color with a shade of grey for woodwork and tadelakt.
Nice detail: most of the fabrics, linnen and curtains came from Valerie’s (the owner) own collection.
For more information about Dar Kawa and rates or availability you can visit Dar Kawa’s website.
Dar Rafti is a beautiful restored riad in the exotic city of Fez in Morocco. The stunningly decorated riad is owned by the jewellery designers of Bouvier.
During a visit to Morocco the Australian couple fell in love with the rich culture and colours, the fabulous food and beautiful, generous people in this mystical part of the world. This trip ultimately led to the purchase and restoration of an ancient residence in Fez situated right in the heart of the city’s bustling medina.
Dar Rafti welcomes guests as self-contained accommodation, and comes complete with directions to local attractions including shopping, restaurants and contacts to guides to ensure a whole and authentic Moroccan experience.
You can see more images here on the website of Dar Rafti. For more information you can contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Babylonstoren is a Cape Dutch farm (one of the oldest!) in the Cape Winelands, South Africa, with vineyards and orchards surrounded by the dramatic mountains of the Drakenstein Valley. It has an exceptionally well–preserved werf dating from 1690. A fruit and vegetable garden of botanical diversity supplies a remarkable restaurant. Guests staying at an exclusive farm hotel enjoy access to the entire farm, plus facilities like a spa and gym. The aim is to have guests feel more comfortable, more alive among warm smiles and the simple daily rhythm of the farm.
The guest suites echo Cape Dutch farm buildings. The style developed in the Cape Colony of the 17th and 18th century: outer walls are whitewashed and decorated with ornate gables and thatched roofs. Interiors are pleasantly cool in summer (due to thick walls) and are heated by open hearths in winter.
Babylonstoren has an exceptionally well-preserved werf. It consists of a main residence, old cellar, koornhuis (where wheat and hay was stored) and row of service buildings, bell tower, ornate fowl pen and dove cote surrounded by the traditional low whitewashed walls. Some of these have been converted into guest accommodation, while a disused kraal was turned into a restaurant, Babel.
The days are intentionally unscripted at Babylonstoren, leaving guests free to do as they please. Stroll out onto the farm of 200 hectares and see fruit being picked in the orchards or vines being pruned – depending on the season. Enjoy a walk in the remarkable fruit and vegetable garden (guided if you feel like learning, or unguided for relaxation). Pick your own salad or enjoy a meal in the superb restaurant. Or rather sample some of the excellent wines grown on the slopes all around the Simonsberg, possibly the finest terroir for wine in Africa? You can choose. Or simply lounge and read, in summer in a hammock strung among tree trunks, in winter curled up before a fire.
Cape Dutch architecture is named for the style of the 17th and 18th century Cape of Good Hope. Characteristic features include soft, whitewashed walls of stone or primitive brick, ornate gables and thatched roofs.
Visit Babylonstoren’s website for more information and bookings.
Peacock Pavilions in Marrakech is on my personal (wish)list of places to stay. It has been since owner Maryam announced on her blog My Marrakech that she was building this guest house. I knew from the start that it was going to be fabulous!
Maryam, who is originally fro the US, is a freelance photographer, travel and lifestyle writer, often reporting on food, shopping, spas, and other fun experiences in Marrakech. Currently she is doing a coffee table book – part memoir and part Moroccan interior design treatise – for a major US publisher. Besides all this, she is trying to save the world as an international human rights and democracy specialist.
Everything you see in Peacock Pavilions has a story to tell; the table that was once the bottom of an Indian cart, masks from West Africa, Moroccan lights designed by hostess Maryam and hand-stenciled floors and ceilings made by artists the world over.
In every room you will discover the attention to detail and the care that comes with treasures selected with inspiration and arranged with love.
But Peacock Pavilions is more than just rooms. The Atlas Pavilion has its very own catwalk high in the air; the Medina Pavilion is equipped with a kitchen that will inspire you to reach culinary heights. Both Pavilions have grand domed salons to make you feel like a pasha in this serene oasis. There is also a pool in the beautiful garden, and hidden away in the olive grove you find an Outdoor Cinema.
For more information and reservations you can visit Peacock Pavilions’ website. During you stay Maryam can provide you with suggestions on fun stuff to do in the city.
L’Ilot is a gorgeous villa located just of the coast of Mauritius. In this tropical paradise you can bath in luxury and style.
I’Ilot is a rock platform of 3100 m² situated on the lagoon, a 100 m approximately from the coastline of Mauritius. Access is via a rock and wood bridged causeway. Positioned on a sand bed and surrounded by filaos trees, this vast villa of almost 300 m² faces North-West, with its back to prevailing breezes.
The building and the its interiors are of a refined contemporary style in harmony with the beauty of this unique site: natural building materials, stone, white or weathered wood, raw concrete, inox, natural fabrics, linen, comfortable and adaptable furniture.
From every window you can look over the Indian ocean and waving trees.
The villa is privately owned but can be rented. You can find more information about rates here.
L’Ilot is a kingdom for crabs, winkles… and local fishermen. When the catch is good, the inhabitants of l’Ilot are also the happy beneficiaries since they can purchase calamari and small fish directly from the fishermen.
After a day in the sun, you sure will have a good night sleep in this stylish bedroom.
For more information and bookings you can visit L’Ilot’s website.
(images and information from L’Ilot)
P‘tit Habibi is an unique riad at the north end of the Marrakech Medina. The house, which fuses traditional artisan craft with modern design, has the feel of a beautifully designed private house. With only 4 rooms it is the perfect place to spend a wonderful long weekend.
All four rooms are individually designed mixing traditional craftsmanship with cutting edge design.
Guests are always served Moroccan style breakfast with seasonal fruits and orange juice. Lunch and dinner can be arranged for an additional charge. The chef prepares traditional Moroccan cuisine with tagines, kofta, kefta and couscous. When weather is good meals can be prepared in the beautiful open-air courtyard and on the terrace.
For more information please visit P’tit Habibi’s website. Bookings also be made via Mr & Mrs. Smith.