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“Relaxed, Charming, Wonderful Stay!”
Review of Riad Baladin

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Riad Baladin
Ranked #9 of 74 Hotels in Essaouira
Certificate of Excellence
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
20 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
“Relaxed, Charming, Wonderful Stay!”
Reviewed 18 May 2012

We had such a lovely stay at the Riad Baladin in April - the decor and design perfectly reflect the relaxed, seaside vibe of Essaouira, and the owner Nicole could not be more welcoming and gracious. She met us at the main square when we arrived in Essaouira, and all of her recommendations for sights and restaurants were spot on. We stayed in the Chambre Creme, which happens to be the smallest of the rooms (and which Nicole apologized profusely for!) but we found it to be just perfect - beautifully decorated and very comfortable, with neat touches like the wood-framed bed, metal lanterns, and clay shower. As with most riads in Morocco, the rooms wrap around the small central courtyard, which means that you have a little less privacy that you might in a typical hotel - our bathroom and bedroom had tall windows that faced the courtyard, covered by curtains of course, but during the day most people left their doors/windows open and it is much more like staying together in a house. While this didn't bother us at all, it's worth mentioning for people who might not be as comfortable in this situation. The public spaces of the riad are also very comfortable and lovely - especially the roof terrace where we had breakfast. And it's such a treat to have a jacuzzi in the courtyard! A great choice for a comfortable riad in Essaouira. I can smell the seaside breezes now....

  • Stayed April 2012, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank peace2494
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (66)
Date | Rating
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English first
Manchester, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
8 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed 17 May 2012

Riad Baladin – I came to Morocco with relaxation in mind and following advice here on trip advisor searched for the ideal places to stay..With the Baladin I wasn’t let down..The house is located in a superb position within the Medina with great views from the terrace.. The Riad itself has a real peaceful feel about it that the layout and décor enhance…The staff there were great and breakfast on the terrace faultless…Nicole the manager was a great help with pointers, tips and advice.. One of the days even inviting me out to lunch with her husband at a nearby sea food beach grill, awesome!.. I felt welcome here and would highly recommend to all those visiting Essaouira…A1! Thankyou…

  • Stayed May 2012, travelled solo
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Helpful?
Thank Super T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Melbourne, Australia
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 7 May 2012

We stayed at the amazing Riad Baladin for 3 nights in mid April and wished we could have stayed longer! The Riad is decorated and designed so beautifully and really reflects a modern moroccan seaside feel. Upon arriving in Essaouira, Claudia (who fills in for Nicole the manager on her day off) met us at the bus and walked us to the riad, giving us advice and telling us interesting things about what to do in Essaouira during our stay. This very helpful advice continued when we got the riad and were given a map where she noted down places to eat, bars and other things to do which was such a great help. The next day Nicole returned and she was so so lovely! Extremely welcoming and friendly and made you feel completely at home in her riad... we also loved her gorgeous dog Carlito! The second day we were there was my boyfriends birthday and she left a gift for him in our room and made arrangements for dinner at a great restaurant, Elizar, which was the best food we had in our time in Morocco. All the dining suggestions we got from Claudia and Nicole were fantastic, so definitely take their advice! Also on day Nicole too 4 of us on a day trip down the coast to a stone hut cafe and for a fantastic seafood lunch and onto another bigger beach for a coffee.. a nice relaxing day and a great opportunity to see some more of the area surrounding the town.
The actual riad was also the best we stayed in during our time in Morocco (2 weeks), the room was really clean and beautifully and stylishly decorated, with a great big bathroom with shower and bath. Breakfast was great and served on the rooftop (although downstairs two mornings because of the wind) but still nice and cosy and relaxing was to spend breakfast.

As Nicole is Swiss and our next travel destination was Switzerland she spent lots of time talking with us and noting down suggestions of places to go, restaurants and other attractions she thought we would like, it was just another example of how she went above and beyond for us and we really appreciated it!

I highly recommend this riad and Nicole and all her friendly staff... we will definitely be staying there again upon our return Essaouira!

Room Tip: The rooms on the top floor are nice and bright
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  • Stayed April 2012, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank Sarah G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
All over the world
Level Contributor
28 reviews
25 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
Reviewed 6 May 2012

We really enjoyed our 4 night stay at the Riad Baladin in Essaouira. Nicole was a wonderful host and always ready to share information on Essaouira. She sent us to a beach that ended up being one of our best experiences of the trip. The only two "negatives" were that the room was rather damp and that they don't serve refreshments such as mint tea. But the breakfast was wonderful and the location impeccable- close by to everything. We would stay at the Baladin again when we return to Essaouira (and we will!)

Stayed April 2012, travelled with family
Helpful?
Thank Tegia
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Yorkshire, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
583 reviews
123 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 272 helpful votes
Reviewed 29 April 2012

We recently stayed for 3 nights at Riad Baladin, which was very different from the exotically decorated Riad we had just left in Marrakech. Baladin is an Interior Design set piece and could happily grace the pages of any glossy style magazine, (indeed it has already). Very much a white walled, bare wood treatment which fits the seaside location perfectly and one of its two courtyards is suitably topped off with a beautifully simple sail arrangement that seals out the weather when necessary.

We arrived by private taxi at the large car park near Bab El Menzah, to the southern western end of the Medina, and our driver handed the luggage over to one of the many local porters who use hand carts to move goods around the narrow streets. Note the porter did rather too well out of us as I did not have anything smaller than a 100 dirham note and he did not offer any change, apparently a reasonable rate would have been 50 dirhams for leading us & moving our luggage from Bab El Menzah to the Riad.

The Riad’s English speaking Swiss manager, Nicole, was out on an excursion with guests when we arrived in the late afternoon, but had left a note and her phone number at the Riad. We made contact and the French speaking night porter was soon there to let us in and show us our room. This was La chambre amoureux on the second floor of the sail topped courtyard, accessed via a winding staircase. This is a lovely room with a huge and very attractive bathroom, both having French doors opening onto the walkway.

Nicole arrived back to greet us, answer any questions and pass on local eating ideas marked on the town map. That first evening was quite windy so we opted for nearby La Licorne and the stuffed crab as she had recommended. We were also given the option of joining other guests on an excursion to a beach cafe at Sidi Kaouki on the following day, Nicole drove us down there and we enjoyed a seafood feast including Sea Urchin, Prawns, Squid and Octopus in a laid back atmosphere next to the fishermen’s houses.

Breakfasts were served on the rooftop terraces or in the ground floor lounges depending on the weather, it was windy enough for us to have 2 of our 3 breakfasts inside. These were generous with lots of choice, fresh fruit, fruit juices, muesli, yoghurt, goat’s cheese, three different breads, eggs, coffee and a selection of teas. The Riad has a computer and the jacuzzi for guests to use, we used neither but did spend a lot of time either on the roof terraces, where there were several nicely sheltered spots and the 360 degree views extend over the dense Medina and out to sea, or in the extensive attractively furnished ground floor lounge areas.

On Nicole’s day off, locally based German Claudia stood in and she helped us out as we had singularly failed to find either Caravane Cafe or Elizir, despite Nicole’s detailed directions. Turned out we had walked past multiple times and had just been looking down the street instead of at the upper parts of the buildings where the signs were. Luckily, Claudia walked us to Caravane Cafe and we booked for that night, otherwise we would have just kept walking past. Claudia runs a riding business that includes beach and camping trips – www.equievasion.com.

My only adverse general comment regarding Essaouira is that the Mellah area to the north east of the Medina did not feel as safe as everywhere else we walked. Apparently this area has a bit of a dodgy reputation so best kept away from, especially in the evening or night time.

Nicole and her all female staff were consistently helpful, friendly and professional. This Riad is an exercise in style designed for Western tastes and including lots of carefully selected objects from a variety of cultures. It is a delightful place to stay and we found shopping in Essaouira to be a much calmer experience than in Marrakech. Both Riad Baladin and Essaouira are well recommended as a two centre combination with Marrakech, where we had stayed at the fabulous Riad Ajebel - www.riadajebel.com.

Finally, Nicole arranged our transfer back to Marrakech airport on the last day of our holiday, in an old but very clean and carefully driven Mercedes, at a cost of 80 euros for the 2.5 hours trip. She also carried our heavy Moroccan carpet to the car for us, thanks for that and everything else Nicole!

Room Tip: The rooms do vary quite a lot in layout so best take a look at the Riad's website and let Nicole...
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  • Stayed April 2012, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank Corb2000
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
London, England
Level Contributor
35 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
Reviewed 23 April 2012

We booked one night here out of a week's holiday in Marrakesh, on the recommendation of Frommer's Guidebook. Nicole very welcoming and friendly. Room (twin) very small but very comfortable and relaxed feel, with lots of white muslin and stripped wood. The whole experience was a relaxing break from the hectic atmosphere in Marrakesh. We took the 'deluxe' coach from near the railway station in Marrakesh and one of Nicole's staff met us off the bus and we walked the 10 minutes along the winding streets of the town to the riad. It's in easy walking distance of everything, bars, restaurants, beach etc. Recommended.

  • Stayed March 2012, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank Jez D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Phoenixville
Level Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 15 April 2012

Essaouira is lovely, quiet and relaxing. Riad Baladin is very tastefully done, with a great location. The staff is very friendly, the breakfast excellent up there on the terrace. Nicole is a superb hostess, with great, knowledgeable advice not only about what to see and do in Essaouira, but also practical things, such as how much to tip and how to go about getting situated with the Moroccan phone system. She speaks so many languages that she's bound to have you covered, even if you only speak Czech! Come to think of it, I suppose if you only speak Czech you won't be reading this review...

  • Stayed April 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank Qatana
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Riad Baladin

Property: Riad Baladin
Address: 9 Rue Sidi Magdoul, Essaouira 44000, Morocco
Phone Number:
Region: Morocco > Marrakech-Tensift-El Haouz Region > Essaouira
Amenities:
Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#4 Family Hotel in Essaouira
#5 On the Beach Hotel in Essaouira
#5 Romantic Hotel in Essaouira
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Hotel Class:3 star — Riad Baladin 3*
Number of rooms: 10
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The "Riad Baladin" is situated in the nicest part of the old town of Essaouira, in the district of "la Skala," just a few meters away from the Sea and a couple of minutes away from the main Square and Port. There is no traffic allowed in the "Medina." This Oasis offers 10 rooms (singles, doubles and suites/triple) all with en-suite bathrooms in a typical Moroccan style, combined with a contemporary design. Last but not least there is also a Jacuzzi & Massage for all the guests. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Riad Baladin Essaouira
Riad Baladin Hotel Essaouira

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