We asked Jinan Aitali, Concierge Supervisor at Four Seasons Resort Marrakech, to gather the savviest sight-seeing suggestions she could find—not just her own, but also those of the local connoisseurs she works with every day at the Resort. Known as “The Red City” for its rose-hued buildings, Marrakech is a Moroccan paradise filled with beautiful architecture, artisan culture and mouth-watering cuisine.
At Mustapha Blaoui’s shop, Trésor des Nomades, you’ll find many rooms, all overflowing with artisanal handicrafts, such as camel-bone-inlaid boxes, traditional textiles and leather poufs. Another favourite stop is Ministero del Gusto (appointments suggested). Even if you aren’t in the market for an antique Murano chandelier or a leopard-print armchair, this shop is worth a peek for the striking design: The showroom has textured walls based on the sand houses of Mali and fireplaces inspired by Ghanaian jewellery. Don’t miss the Berber-inspired rooftop, and stop to check out the vintage couture on your way back downstairs. No visit to Marrakech is complete without a shopping trip to the city’s souks. The best-known souk is just off bustling Jemaa el Fna square, and its vendors offer both traditional and contemporary wares.
Jemaa el Fna square is one of the most vibrant and lively you can find in Africa, with snake charmers, acrobats, dancers, storytellers, food vendors, musicians and magicians. It’s also oftentimes incredibly hectic and overcrowded. To enjoy the sights without all the people, head to the rooftop café Terrasse des Épices. You can sip delicious coffee or cocktails while taking in all the activity down below.
Before there was Sephora there was the souk, where countless herbalists have long marketed Morocco’s unique beauty and wellness cures. Of the many herbalists, Nectarome is the best. The lotions and potions (including herb-infused argan oil) are made on an organic farm in Ourika Valley, just outside of Marrakech. Pop into the shop at Almazar Centre Commercial for a quick intro, or, for a more in-depth experience, pay a visit to the farm, where you can enjoy lunch made from organic produce grown on site, tour the facility where more than 50 aromatic and medicinal plants are cultivated, and enjoy a soak in a sunken bath. You can also select teas freshly brewed from a selection of the garden’s plants and herbs.
New City Diversions
The Guéliz is a modern district built by French and European expats. A flock of up-and-coming designers has landed here, and you’ll find fashion-forward clothing stores and interiors shops that put a contemporary spin on traditional Moroccan motifs clustered around Rue de la Liberté, Marrakech’s answer to the Champs-Élysées. A standout is Fadila el Gadi (by appointment), where you can stock up on classically inspired pieces like reworked military jackets for her and sleek, collarless jackets that are a chic alternative to blazers for him.
Yahya Creation is another must. Morocco is full of beautiful metalwork, but the pieces created by the London-born former martial arts instructor Yahya are some of the most exemplary in the entire country. At his eponymous boutique you’ll find lamps, wall hangings, and even furniture made from bronze, silver, wood and stone. Each piece is hand-carved and shaped into an elaborate form, and then drilled with many holes to create soft patterns of light.