Tranquility Amidst The Chaos: Angsana Riads Collection, Morocco
Marrakech is famous for its hustle and bustle. Mark Southern visited the Angsana Riads Collection to find some peace in the heart of the madness.
As originally published in Tempus Magazine, 2015
As our collective desire for more authentic travel grows ever stronger, so does the allure of Morocco, with its evocative scents, sounds, and souks providing sensory overload for those breaking out of the city for a weekend.
There is no such thing as a quiet stroll through the Marrakech leather and spice markets, as the musky air, enclosed walls, and persuasive shopkeepers create an ambience of total submersion, as motorbikes and stray cats weave past the packed-in throngs. It’s as close to other-worldly as you can find within four hours from London.
However, the indubitable charms of Marrakech are counterbalanced by the sheer relentlessness of its vibrant vibrations, and solace is needed far away from the maddening crowd.
Step forward, or should that be step back, the Angsana Riads Collection; a small cluster of beautifully appointed riads, situated in the heart of the medina, offering a sanctuary from the constant crazy outside.
Each riad has its own unique ambience, with a wonderful under-the-stars dining experience in one, opulent spa in another, and more cosy cubbyholes and romantic private terraces than you’ll possibly have the time to enjoy.
Each riad has an unassuming thick wooden door onto the cobbled streets outside, belying the magic inside. In the bustling avenues minds whirl, but stepping through those doors flicks a switch, and the world goes silent and calm once again.
Rooms are stunningly crafted, with a strong genuine local flavour, and the deepest levels of comfort you’ll experience. Soft lighting and even softer furnishings provide a level of relaxation and zen that enriches the soul, and replenishes patience, before heading out once again into the thrilling but throbbing crowded souks.
The spa facilities are first class, with an authentic hammam a must-try, where you’ll be scrubbed from head to toe for nearly two hours or relaxation and cleansing, before exiting feeling, and looking, like a new person.
Meanwhile, the dining options are of the highest quality, with a range of local tajines and spices, alongside more European options. Breakfast with the sun shimmering on the courtyard dining tables, and dinner with the twinkling stars above are both highlights.
It may not be possible to leave Marrakech without an overladen suitcase of rugs, handbags and trinkets, but for those seeking a dream desert experience the Angsana Riads is a truly magical carpet ride.
British Airways fly direct to Marrakech from London Gatwick. Don’t forget to book their award-winning business class to arrive relaxed and in style. www.ba.com
This article originally appeared in Tempus Magazine, 2015. See below for full article: