My darling friend Sammi gets married in just a few short days and I wasn't going to post about the hen party we went on to Marrakesh, Morocco but I found the place so captivating and inspiring that I just had to tell you a little bit about our Arabian adventure!
I must admit that when Morocco was first thrown into the mix I was a little apprehensive and unsure about the location, especially for 11 ladies looking for a bit of a party! I was however completely surprised about how safe I felt and how much I loved their country. Morocco has some truly beautiful sights to see and was actually one of the more cleaner places I have visited in the world.
When we arrived in Marrakesh our taxi pretty much dropped us off in the middle of a busy street, full of inquisitive locals wondering who on earth these women were and why one of them was dressed in a tutu and veil!!
We were lead down a mysterious winding alleyway to a random tiny doorway just a short walk from the main street. What we found inside was a world away from what we had expected and from the dusty streets outside. Our riad could only be described as lavish, we had exclusive hire of the whole place which was absolutely perfect for us 11. Riad Goloboy boasts 3 floors of 12 individually decorated rooms. I actually spent a portion of the first day exploring every corner of the place wondering how many more rooms it could possibly hold! They were all so beautifully furnished and each one had its own different personality. I was very lucky to be sharing with the bride so we had a ground floor room which looked a bit like a honeymoon suite with its white interior. In the middle of the rooms was a gorgeous courtyard with a fountain where we found the best lighting for our group shots! We also had a sun terrace complete with comfy sunbeds and a hot tub - which we actually used more as a plunge pool in the 33 degree heat!
We had 24 hour service from the French speaking staff working at Riad Goloboy and they honestly couldn't have been more accommodating. They walked us too and from the main street every evening and arranged taxis, prepared us food as well as keeping the place tidy.
We booked a tour guide to take us around some of the different quarters of Marrakesh and he spontaneously took us to visit part of one of their lavish palaces. It was so beautiful and I was completely obsessed with the floors (I have a bit of a thing for good lookin' flooring!) but I must admit the tour did drag a little and we kind of wanted to get onto the souks before lunchtime! Our guide also seemed to have a little "deal" going with a carpet shop so he ended up ushering us into one for what felt like forever to be shown like 400 rugs that we quite clearly weren't interested in buying, so do watch out for that if you book a tour guide in Marrakesh.
I didn't make it to the souks unfortunately due to the pretty long walk around beforehand and still having to be careful after my surgery. But most of the girls had a walk around and said it was pretty cool, and some came away with some leather goods and Moroccan oils (the locals don't like you taking photos in the souks so sadly I don't have any to show you either - very mysterious!!) When wandering around Morocco I think its good to bear in mind that yes this is a Muslim country and it is polite to keep a little more covered up than you usually might in other hot countries. We found that taking light scarves out with us to throw over shoulders and cleavages was our best bet.
Our first night in Morocco was spent in true hen party style with a slumber party/dinner in our Riad. The staff thought we were mental, wearing our PJ's to have our 5 course (delicious) meal and drinking shots every time someone said the word "wedding"!! The drinks flowed and the games escalated so obviously all of those photos can stay hidden on our iPhones :) If anyone needs some hen party game ideas comment below, as one of the bridesmaids came up with some of the best i've played!!!!
Going out out in Marrakesh was brilliant. One of our evenings started with another five course meal, this time at a quaint little place called Tobsil. It was another one of those places you literally wouldn't know existed until someone guided you there and behind the door was a stunning restaurant filled with the smell of Moroccan tagines and sound of traditional music. We were served various delicious dishes, courgettes, hummus, tagines and honey and almond chicken. The food was so lovely and the staff spoke impeccable English, I would highly recommend visiting Tobsil if you're in Marrakesh and want to experience a taste of their food and culture. The lighting was SO dark in Tobsil however so any photos we did get weren't the best quality
We quickly found ourselves in the upmarket and modern part of Marrakesh where the buildings became newer and a lot taller. We headed into a club called So Lounge which was immediately right up our street! They had a band on stage with some great singers playing all the classics and latest songs for us to get our groove on to! Unfortunately for us though we had underestimated how much alcohol was going to cost in these bars and it was most definitely London prices..plus! Despite the fact we ran out of cash pretty quickly we still had such a great time and pretty much crawled into bed with giddy heads and sore cheeks from the laughs.
As beautiful as our Riad was we spent one of the 33 degree days at Beldi Country Club which was simply STUNNING! I mean like breathtakingly beautiful, you really have to see it to believe it. After lounging off our hangovers on their cosy sunbeams, we enjoyed cocktails and lunch in their little restaurant whilst we presented our Hen with a book of special messages from everyone involved in this special trip! Its safe to say we all shed a little tear and some laughs at the photos and lovely things everybody had to say to our gorgeous Bride
I cannot praise Marrakesh enough and Riad Goloboy for making our stay one to remember. Now onto the main event and where the fun begins.. The Wedding!!!!!
Tips if you're travelling to Morocco:
- Change up your money when you get to the airport in Morocco as the rate is so much better
- Take light scarfs as you will need to cover your shoulders in the old town/souks
- Get an exchange rate app or calculator, I was the only one who had it and we would have been stuffed without it as its not the easiest currency to convert
- Bear in mind that drinking alcohol in Morocco can be expensive
- Take tablets for upset stomachs with you as we did find that we all had a dodgy belly at different points of the holiday
- Take TONS of anti-bac!
What countries are you visiting this year?? Have you been to Morocco?