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Riad Le Calife
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Reviews (807)
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All reviewsdiamond suiteamethyst roomcooking class with fatimarooftop terracethe stained glass windowsperfect hoststhe entire staffcooking lessonbeautiful riadspent four nightsmake you feel at homean oasislovely courtyardowners and stafflike royaltycentral courtyardsmall hotel
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Reviewed 8 October 2010

So many wonderful reviews. All true. Two tips. Diamond room was huge, luxe and dramatic. Second, eat one night at the raid. Wonderful Moroccan fare was our favorite in fez

  • Stayed: October 2010, travelled as a couple
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Thank miuraman
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 30 September 2010

The RIad is amazing. It has been beautifully renovated in a manner that is true to its historic roots but is also fashionable and comfortable. We were on our honeymoon; so, we splurged for the Diamond Room. As my wife said, it is probably the nicest room we will ever stay in. You feel like you are staying in a palace. They ever arranged hearts with flower pedals on the bed for our arrival. The only thing better than the Riad are the hosts, Yasmine and Alex. They are extremely helpful, and very charming. I also highly recommend having at the Riad at least one night. The food is delicious, but you may want to skip lunch as the portions are generous. There is no reason to look any further than Riad Le Calife.

  • Stayed: September 2010, travelled as a couple
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Thank Boulder1Boulder
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 29 September 2010

I do not know what we would have done without Alex and Yasmine. They were phenomenal hosts and it was such a pleasure to be guests in their home.

Our plane to Morocco was an hour late; this caused us to miss our train. We missed the high speed train and ended up in Fes two hours late. We emailed Alex and Yasmine to let them know but we were worried that someone would not be at the train station to meet us. We were extremely relieved the find the driver waiting for us at the station. He waited for two hours after Alex and Yasmine informed him that we were still coming on a later train. What a relief! The riad porter then loaded our bags in a cart and lead us to the riad.

When we arrived at the riad we were graciously greeted by Alex and Yasmine. They requested our passports and completed a form upon our arrival. (This form is important.** All hotels are required to turn this form into the authorities as a way to account for the guests. We found out later in our trip that many riads operate fraudulently as a way to escape paying taxes. The owners will not live at the riad, they will require cash only and will not complete the forms. Just something to watch out for. ) After Alex showed us to our lovely room he escorted us to dinner in the courtyard. We had requested dinner on the first night and it was kept warm for our arrival. After our long train ride we were famished and the food was amazing. Dinner was awesome! I would recommend having dinner at the riad at least one night.

The next morning Alex showed us a map and explained how to navigate around the old city. Alex has probably given the same speech 1000 times but he seemed excited to tell us about Fes and all of the information was very useful. We set out on the first day and tried to follow the signs but we did not realize that the color paths in the souk are not always the same as the colors on the map. We realized that if you look for the name of the gate (bab) this is what really helps. You just have to let yourself get lost in the medina and have fun with it or you will get frustrated. You do not need a guide. Once we stopped trying to figure it out and just went with it, we had a blast. After wondering around a short time we started to figure out the different routes through the souk. The alleyways in Fes are very narrow and maze like, not as wide as the alleys in Marrakech. Only mules and motorbikes can make it into the souk. The souk is very traditional and it was an amazing adventure.

The riad was a wonderful place to relax after the exhausting day in the souks. My husband and I enjoyed mint tea on the terrace with an amazing assortment of cookies. The cookies were absolutely scrumptious. Alex and Yasmine did such an amazing job restoring the riad. Their riad was in the traditional format with the fountain in the center of the courtyard and the lovely gardens in the surrounding areas. Some riads have a swimming pool and other amenities which take away from the authenticity and beauty. I am involved in photography and had a blast photographing all of the amazing details in the riad. Please check out my photos attached to the trip advisor site. The riad is beautiful! The riad I stayed in in Marrakech didn’t even compare.

Alex and Yasmine recommended a restaurant called Fes Et Gestes for dinner the second night. It was wonderful! Le Calife is number one on trip advisor for a reason. They made our stay memorable and we will never forget our amazing experience staying at Le Calife. I highly recommend this riad and cannot praise the fantastic service enough. We were completely spoiled by Alex and Yasmine. They will do anything in their power to make your stay exceptional.

  • Stayed: September 2010, travelled as a couple
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Thank MChamblee
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 13 August 2010

My fiancee and I stayed at Riad Le Calife for four nights in early May 2010, and we have been raving about it ever since.

We cannot imagine how you could improve upon the service provided by Alex and Yasmine Lecomte, who I believe are also the proprietors in addition to running the riad themselves. The phrase that comes to mind is that they made us feel like we were guests in their home, but actually it was better than that. They are always ready to help, but have a light touch. It would be more accurate to say we felt like house guests in all of the best ways. The two of them are on the premises from early morning until late at night and take the kind of responsibility you would expect of owners. As it gradually dawned on us that we were in the best of hands, we consulted them on more and more things. In the end, I think they did more to plan our trip to Fez than we did. They arranged a car to pick us up at the airport, arranged a guide to take us around the medina our first day, arranged a car for a day trip to Volubilis and Meknes, and offered excellent restaurants recommendations for lunch and dinner around Fez (although our favorite meals were at Riad Le Calife itself). Everything they recommended or arranged for us was flawless, and reasonably priced. There was not a single mis-step.

The riad itself is breathtaking. The Diamond Room, where we stayed, looks like you should have to buy a ticket to enter. Like the madrasas of Fez, it is decorated with sculpted stucco, carved wood and colored tilework. It has stained glass windows facing west, and the patterns cast on the walls at sunset are dazzling. It is (like the riad as a whole) perfumed by orange flower water. The central courtyard, which all the rooms face, is a soothing sanctuary from the bustle and din of the medina. Around sunset, after long days of traipsing about the medina, we often read on our bed, or on the day bed, with our windows flung wide open, listening to the courtyard fountain burble away. When we were able to tear ourselves away from our room, we would take our afternoons rest after touring on the roof terrace, which offers panoramic views of the medina and the surrounding hills.

Whatever you do, don’t miss dinners at the riad. Food matters a lot to us, and we sought out the best restaurants of Fez when we dined out, but the best meals we had were at the riad. This was quite a surprise to us – going in, I wasn’t even aware the riad offered dinner. Each night, a different set menu is offered – one night it was cous cous, another night fish. In our experience, you can’t go wrong, but we recommend the cous cous in particular. Our only regret is that we didn’t stay in for dinner more than two of our four nights.

The last thing we would note – and this is very important – is that the riad has an excellent location: it is in the medina, but at its edge. This is ideal because it puts the riad within easy walking distance of the principal sights of Fez (which are all in the medina), but, unlike places in the heart of the medina (which, to simplify, is like a giant pedestrian maze), is easily accessible by car, not more than a three-minute walk from a cab stand.

If it is not clear from the above, we cannot recommend Riad Le Calife strongly enough. We hope you try it. If you are at all unsure, exchange a few emails with Alex and Yasmine. You will quickly see what we’re talking about.

  • Stayed: May 2010, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank HB_NY
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 5 August 2010

The Riad Calife is an absolute gem (pardon the pun - the rooms are all named after precious stones) in the old old town of Fes.

Arriving after a long and very hot train journey from Tanger, we were met at the station by a driver with a carefully printed sign, and driven to a small taxi rank by the Cinema Amar, which became an important landmark for our travels in and around the city. Met there by a member of the Riad's staff, our bags were put into the trolley and we were led off into the Medina, through narrow streets lined with small stalls selling an array of edible goods and general supplies. Cars are not allowed into the Medina, so everything is transported by trolleys pulled by men, or on the backs of donkeys and mules. We arrived at the door of the Riad (it's really very easy to find once you've got your bearings) hot, sweaty and tired. Greeted by a bubbly French- and English-speaking receptionist, we were ushered into the air-conditioned splendour of the reception area, she disappeared briefly and returned with three folded towels on a metal tray. Expecting these to be hot towels (as after a curry) we were very pleasantly surprised to discover they were in fact from the freezer, and all 3 of us sat there with towels over our faces. A glass of lemonade and we were ready for the tour of the property, whilst our bags were whisked to our rooms. And what rooms .... Beautifully designed and decorated, our rooms (Diamande and Opaline) were, like everything else at the Calife, elegant and stylish. It seems that every single thing at the Riad has been very carefully chosen with the utmost attention to detail and with great taste, from the furniture and furnishings to the food, the staff team and the decor. The Riad is owned and run by a very pleasant couple - Alexandre and Jasmine - who gave every visitor a personal and genuine welcome, and who, along with their staff team, could not have been more helpful. Mention must also be made of Darwin, the resident dog (although I don't think he knows he is one), a very well behaved playful member of the team.

We had superb breakfasts every day on the rooftop terrace, and dinners too - each made with care and attention, including special dishes every day for our vegetarian. Meals were taken on the rooftop terrace, from where you have a superb view of Fes Medina, which is packed into a bowl-shaped area, and the most striking position from which to hear the call to prayer which is issued simultaneously from the many, many minarets of the old city.

I cannot think of a single thing to say about how the Riad Calife could be improved, and would recommend it without hesitation. I'd love to go back sometime.

  • Stayed: August 2010, travelled with family
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Thank Mr_MYork_UK
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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