We stayed at the Riu Tikida Palace for three weeks in February 2014. On our last visit to Agadir in 2008 we had watched the site of the Riu Palace start to be developed and we arrived with high hopes.
The entrance and reception are impressive and the hotel created a good impression from the moment we walked through the doors. Reception staff were pleasant and helpful. We had upgraded to a pool view room and had been allocated a room facing north. We knew from other reviews that the hotel is horseshoe shaped with the two legs housing the rooms which are at right angles to the beach. Also from previous visits to Agadir that it was best to face south to get all-day sun into the room. We asked to move to a high floor, south facing pool room and changing sides wasn't a problem although we had to wait one night till a suitable room became available. It was lunchtime when we arrived and our room wasn't ready till 2pm so we wandered to the dining room for lunch before we unpacked.
Our room was superb and spacious in four areas; a bedroom area, two steps down to a sitting area with couch, two chairs and a table, through full-width glass doors onto a private balcony, and off the bed area the ensuite comprising wardrobes, doors to a 'his and hers' sink unit, bath with shower and a separate toilet and bidet. Facilities included a good-sized safe, a fridge stocked with soft drinks and water, a kettle and supply of tea/coffee/milk and sugar. The milk was long-life but it was perfectly acceptable to take a jug of fresh milk from breakfast and put it in the room fridge.
We were impressed by the high standard of cleanliness. The rooms were spotless and around the hotel both inside and outside people were constantly cleaning and tidying.
For a buffet format the food was excellent, always well presented with plenty of choice. We asked for a tour of the kitchen and the Head Chef gave us a private visit. The facilities were state of the art, spotless and well organised. We were told that all the food (meat, veg, fish etc) was sourced from Morocco and all pastries, breads, cakes etc were made on the premises.
We only had one disappointment with the hotel and that concerned the seating in the dining rooms (one for breakfast and dinner near reception, another for lunch near the promenade). There were areas for outside eating which we chose for breakfast and lunch and these were fine, but for dinner we ate inside. Other than a few tables around the edge of the dining room the rest of the tables were in rows, usually grouped in threes for six people. The result is that often people found themselves shoulder to shoulder with strangers and unable to conduct a private conversation. We knew it was buffet-service but for a five-star hotel we did not expected the table lay-out to be more like a cafeteria.
There were two speciality restaurants with waiter service, one traditional Moroccan food, the other fusion food. The menus were quite restricted and didn't change. We enjoyed the Moroccan restaurant, but not the fusion one which didn't suit us and was very rushed (servings at 7pm and 9pm)
One of the outstanding memories was the attitude and friendliness of staff who were all happy, friendly and helpful.
There were lots of sunbeds and sitting areas to enjoy the sun. Disappointingly many people still choose to put towels on beds long before breakfast. From the grounds there is direct access onto a recently completed promenade allowing a lovely walk around the bay. There were some sellers of trinkets and clothing but a smile and firm 'no thanks' kept them away.
Moroccan people are very good with languages. After Arabic and Berber the next most popular language spoken by staff was French, then English, German and Spanish. This mix reflected the hotel visitors, the majority being French. Contrary to some reviews critical of the lack of English we thought it a positive being able to practice our French.
The weather was fabulous during our stay. In three weeks the only rain we saw was a little drizzle late one evening. The temperature was in the 20's and we had sun every day.
We had a lovely holiday and if you can live with the seating arrangements for meal-times then we would certainly recommend this hotel.
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