Talaa 12, the Medina, Marrakech, Morocco ***

Q: What is it? A: Picture for yourself a modern riad – you’ll probably end up with something like this!

Fountains are used in riads to help keep the temperature in the courtyard down.

Here's where everything begins – the mandatory little fountain around which the world revolves.

Not shown in this image: The propeller in the ceiling. Thanks, Talaa 12.

Quite minimalistic. Quite nice. The Talaa 12 is a pretty good representative of the modern riad. However, expect no such things as TV or mini bar. More importantly, the AC was very good. And the room had a fan in the ceiling as well.

Dear Management at Talaa 12; you need to fix this bathroom. It's urgent.

A rather modern-looking and spacious bathroom but it also has some room
for improvement: When you take a shower, you're flooding the area. Not cool.

The balcony on the 1st floor, overlooking the courtyard

Clean and stylish. The balcony on the 1st floor of the Talaa 12

Drinks on the rooftop, anyone? Talaa 12's version of it is a cozy place.

Rooftop comfort: Under this Berber tent you may sip on a... lemonade or similar while watching the sun set in the west. This was windy evening which meant that the rooftop was empty.

A nice view from above. One of the windows of my room is seen to the right.

Talaa 12 may sound like a rather small riad with only 8 guest rooms. But compared to other riads and ordinary hotel rooms your living space at the Talaa 12 is either size large or x-large.

The driver created a mess for himself…
I blame it all on him. While trying to get his car through the narrow, winding streets of the Marrakech medina, he simply got stuck between a stone wall and a shop, turning a short taxi-ride into an unwanted tourist attraction. It costed him his right rear mirror. Therefore, arriving to the Talaa 12 was an even bigger relief. It’s located next to the souk and just an olive’s throw from the Ben Youssef Madrasa, the former theological college in Marrakech. This riad isn’t exactly yelling “Here I am”, so drivers don’t know about it. Not many folks in the neighbourhood were able to just point it out.

With just 8 rooms the service level is the expected.
You WILL be well taken care of at the Talaa 12. When asking Ibrahim, the manager on duty, how to get to Café Arabe, he just said ”Come on… follow me!” The followed a 10-minute guided tour through the souk. What Hilton hotel manager would personally walk you through this maze to make sure that you arrive to your restaurant? I suppose that would be impossible at any larger establishment, but this was probably just another day at work at the Talaa 12 with only 8 rooms, (and maximum 18 guests).

A traditional riad that is not very traditional.
This is not the place for those who want to take the time machine a few centuries back in time. Rooms and public spaces are furnished in a rather contemporary fashion. Quite minimalistic but yet not 100% functional. Taking a shower that lasts more than 2 minutes means the bathroom floor gets flooded. Also rooms come with no keys. ”This is such a small place”, was the explanation. And true enough, it is impossible to get inside without the staff admitting you in.

It should be awarded with more stars…
It certainly has its qualities – the staff being the most outstanding one. I’d recommend the Talaa 12 if you want something that doesn’t feel like a hotel but more like a very well run B&B. I’d also recommend it for anybody who doesn’t want their piggy bank smashed.
Also, before coming here, call the riad and ask them to arrange with porters bringing your luggage to the door. On departure, they did just that and the system worked like a charm although Obi-Wan Kenobi spent an eternity pushing a cart with my heavy bags to the waiting car. Make that a 70-year old Obi-Wan with bad shoes and a severe back problem. Or maybe not. He got a hefty tip and danced away. Maybe he was just a good actor?

Talaa 12
N° 12 Talaa Ben Youssef
40000 Medina Marrakech


Click here to book Talaa 12 through TabletHotels.com!

1 comment

  1. Beautiful country… exotic and stunning


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