BOHEMIA: Marrakech Madness

By Shannon Brien

“Its approximately 150 metres that way,” our taxi driver said as we over paid our fare and watched him speed back through the busy streets.

We found ourselves in the centre of the equally infamous and famous Djemaa El Fna with our suitcases and vague instructions on where our Riad is. Almost immediately the excitement and buzz of Marrakech draws you in and in no time you’re lost in the labyrinth of varying souks struggling to find your way out.

souk

souk 2

Guidebooks warn to be wary of misinformation and ‘tourist prices’ but the best part of travelling is getting lost, being ripped off and misguided because it always leads to new discoveries or in the very least, an exciting tale for the folks back home.

After exploring the entire square carrying our luggage we finally made it to our riad. We opened a door that seemed to only exist in the towering red wall and walked the long passage towards another door that opened to heaven. Palais Sebban was exactly the palace it claims to be with a majestic courtyard adorned with incredible protruding fixtures and an opulent pool.

1 m

m2

pool 1

pool 2

pool 3

In Moroccan culture it is considered poor taste to flaunt your wealth, that is why the entrance to many homes are relatively basic, just a plain door in a wall. The interior, however, represents a place of refuge and is usually bright, spacious and decorated with colourful patterned tiles known as zelij.

tiles

Moroccan interiors and home wares are famed for their bold colours and interesting patterns which Villeroy and Boch have used in their Samarkand collection. Inspired by tales of 1001 Nights and Moroccan cuisine, this range will make you feel as though you are enjoying your breakfast in Marrakesh as each piece mirrors the incredible ceramics you would find in the bustling souks of Djemaa El Fna with intense colour and mosaic motifs.

Friends25

Huxley Hand Woven Kilim - L14 0 - www.sabichi.co.uk (2)

Samarkand2011

During my stay in the fabulous city I gorged on tantalising tagines around low tables on bright colourful cushions that lay upon exquisite rugs. The balance of comfort and decadence makes Moroccan interiors feel like the refuge they aim to be, an idea which translates to homes and restaurants in any country.

Marrakech is mad, manic and magnificent, full of style, decadence and chaos. It not only has something for everyone, it has something to bring home for everyone, whether it’s spices, ceramics, lanterns or slippers. My week in Morocco was just what I needed to unwind and get away from my monotonous life in summer absent London, and I returned with a tan and brilliant home wares to remind me of my fabulous trip.