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Dar Qawi - Riad by the Sea

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Overview
3 bedrooms
3 bathrooms
6 guests
2 nights minimum 
Riad
One of Essaouira’s best kept secrets is Dar Qawi, a British owned riad, in prime location within the old city walls and only five minutes walk from the beach. Step over the threshold and the tinkling of an antique alabaster fountain welcomes you into this peaceful oasis which combines Arabic charm with European comfort. The house, which can accommodate up to six adults plus one child in three en suite bedrooms plus a small nursery, is let as a whole, regardless of the number of occupants, from Euros 100 per night, depending on season, and this includes breakfast and daily maid service. It is a great base from which to explore the local world heritage site, to indulge in some of the action packed sports on offer, such as kite surfing, quad-biking, camel riding and golf or to just hang lo...One of Essaouira’s best kept secrets is Dar Qawi, a British owned riad, in prime location within the old city walls and only five minutes walk from the beach. Step over the threshold and the tinkling of an antique alabaster fountain welcomes you into this peaceful oasis which combines Arabic charm with European comfort. The house, which can accommodate up to six adults plus one child in three en suite bedrooms plus a small nursery, is let as a whole, regardless of the number of occupants, from Euros 100 per night, depending on season, and this includes breakfast and daily maid service. It is a great base from which to explore the local world heritage site, to indulge in some of the action packed sports on offer, such as kite surfing, quad-biking, camel riding and golf or to just hang loose and chill out on the roof terrace, on the beach or in one of the many inviting cafes and restaurants in the market square. From groups of friends to romantic twosomes, every visitor will feel the magic of this riad. We like our guests to feel comfortable so we have soft white towelling robes, top quality white cotton sheets and towels, plenty of beach towels, fruit or eggs for breakfast alongside orange juice, pastries, preserves, coffee or tea, WiFi internet access, DvDs and CDs, plenty of electric radiators and warm blankets for those rare days when when a chill blows in from the Atlantic and we always try to accommodate special requests. Our local house manager is from the UK and our wonderful Moroccan housekeeper is an excellent cook who will be happy to make light lunches or more substantial dinners for you at very reasonable rates.
House Rules
Pets not allowedKid friendlyNo smoking
Bedrooms
1 King1 Double2 Singles1 Cot
Bathrooms
3 Attached (ensuite)

Meet the host
Kia A
Hosting since August 2010
Languages spoken: German, English, French
Response Time: Within a few hours

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Reviews (83)
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Malte C
Malte C
2 contributions
Dishonest marroccan scam
-Drilling, construction noises from 6am. Riad is old so sound travels everywhere. -Internet is not medina intetnet its comoletely dysfunctional -Very dishonest housekeeper and host: We had to pay for using 5he laundry machine, she came demanding more money continously despite the fact that we paid 50MAD for cleaning the dishes and despite paying a cleaning fee. I wanted to do the dishes in the morning but the house keeper refused, saying it should go in special trash. What a joke in hindsight. We took all yhe trash outside the house. hey seem desperate for money. Beware, they uploaded one photo on the sink and 5!!! plates and demanded 100USD on top, despite all the other fees. AVOID AT ALL COSTS, this is not what it used to be.
Visited July 2023
Written 19 July 2023. This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

albrinton77
albrinton77
1 contribution
An amazing family holiday
We stayed here for the May half term holiday and couldn’t have been happier. The riad was lovely and very well located. The caretaker was incredibly helpful and friendly. The breakfast was delicious and made fresh for you in the kitchen so our kids really enjoyed watching how it was all done. We were also put in contact with a local tour guide who showed us to an amazing day on the beach with surf lessons. I would High recommend this property.
Visited May 2019
Written 12 August 2019. This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

stevebrenman
stevebrenman
London, United Kingdom57 contributions
Authentic hideaway far from the Madding Crowd but Very Central
We spent a week in this fabulous gem right in the heart of the Medina( nothing is more than 10 minutes away ) but very quiet despite the central location. It is comfortable in all respects and has all the things you'd want in a place like this eg adequate hot water/ plenty of bathrooms/ toilets / fully equipped with plenty of personal touches that make it feel like a home rather than a hotel. And in now way overdone... which can also be a negative Daily breakfast visits by Zara whio also cooked a fabulous seafood pizza Moroccan style for us were also a treat. The fresh fish cooked as caught in the nearby harbour was fantastic and the many restaurants and eateries nearby meant we did no cooking at all - though it was perfectly possible with the abundance of food on sale in the Souq Sun shone- no wind - and not too hot Recommended very highly
Visited November 2018
Written 4 December 2018. This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Ros27111
Ros27111
Brighton and Hove, United Kingdom8 contributions
Lovely riad, very comfortable and very convenient
Dar Qawi is traditional and beautiful furnished riad. We were made to feel at home and Zaras cooking both on our first night and for every breakfast was delicious. Communications with both Kia and Sandra were excellent both before during and after our trip and the riad itself is very conveniently placed for exploring the town.
Visited February 2018
Written 20 February 2018. This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Arthur B
Arthur B
1 contribution
Hidden gem
Perfect location, pretty central amongst winding alleys. Health spa across the way, provisions store literally next door, roof terrace, easy walk into town, harbour and the beach - perfect! And the lovely Zara who brings breakfast, cleans and will cook an evening meal if required.
Visited September 2017
Written 11 October 2017. This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Paul B
Paul B
Havant, United Kingdom2 contributions
Great traditional Riad in the heart of Essaouira
We ended up in Dar Qawi completely by accident as we had been double booked elsewhere for our stay in Essaouira. The person that we had been double booked with found Dar Qawi for us to stay in instead. Serendipity! The riad would have been a little difficult to find had we not been "hijacked" by a porter in the car park who insisted on taking our bags in a hand cart to the riad and for pennies really. We had been given a contact number but our phones refused to let us phone Morocco from Morocco for some reason. The porter, however, found the Riad, told us it was very good and then even lent us his phone to contact the owners representative, who turned up within a couple of minutes! The riad is very clean, comfortable, pretty well equiped for short and long stays, and cleaned daily by the lovely Zara, who also provided an ample and tasty breakfast each day. There are a couple of outside eating/lounging areas and plenty of seating and sun loungers for catching some sun. Essaouira Medina is very easily navigate once you have walked around it for a couple of hours and the Souks are much easier to look around than those in Marrakech, our next stop. Essaouira has a reputation as "the windy city" but this was not the case whilst we were there fortunately. It is a proper working town with a large fishing fleet and a busy fish market. There is plenty of choice for food by way of many restaurants, cafes, fish shacks and hole in the wall takeaways. If you need/want alcohol, it can be purchased from the large Carrefour supermarket just as you come into town on the Marrakech Road. You cannot buy alcohol in the Aswak Essalam supermarket which is slightly closer in to the Medina. We had hired a car and went out to the beach at Sidi Kaouki each day. We almost had the 2 mile long beach to ourselves so this is highly recommended too. Siudi Kaouki is better for surfing and paddleboarding than Essaouira beach, with at least 3 places to hire kit and take lessons if necessary. Would we come back to Essaouira and the Riad Dar Qawi again? Undoubtedly!
Visited April 2017
Written 25 April 2017. This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Andreas
Andreas
Berlin, Germany2 contributions
Great Riad in the heart of the old town
Perfect location in the heart of the car-free medina close to restaurants, shops and stunning harbour. Beautifilly decorated and furnished in the local style and only a few minutes walk to the beach and surfers paradise. We'll be back!
Visited February 2017
Written 15 March 2017. This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Stef K
Stef K
1 contribution
Nice, but expected more, not very healthy environment for young kids.
The riad was nice, but unfortunately not good timing for us, especially when you have 6 month old baby and 4 year child. There were construction just in front of the riad, very noisy, so we couldn't enjoy the terrace. Then it was very humid inside the house, I think because it rained a little bit. Then there were cockroaches and we were again unlucky because the flies were reproducting themselves and you could see their larves everywhere... All that combined, I thought I would leave after the first night of stay! Positive thing were delicious dinners prepared by Zahra.
Visited October 2016
Written 4 November 2016. This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
Kia A
Kia A
I was so sorry to read that you did not enjoy your stay at our riad. Having investigated and looked into the points you made I have found out that unbeknown to me, the riad opposite ours is indeed being refurbished. As it is located in the old medina, the narrow alleyways of which are entirely pedestrianised , all work there is undertaken by small hand tools rather than by vehicles or heavy machinery. Nonetheless, I have been told that there is indeed some hammering noise during the day. I appreciate that this may have caused irritation and I am very sorry that I was not aware of it, so as to let you know and give you the option to cancel beforehand. I have been reassured that any cockroaches you may have seen would have been outside in the street but not in the house itself. We are absolutely maniacal about vermin control and our house is very clean, so luckily we never have cockroaches in the house. I also understand that the fly larvae you mention here, were in fact butterfly larvae in the plants on the roof terrace, as commented on by your wife, I believe. I am told by our house manager and by our house keeper that, while you were staying at the house, you did not mention that you were unhappy. Had we known that you felt so uncomfortable, we would have gladly relocated you to another riad. Any constructive criticism is always gladly taken on board. As we are not ourselves in Essaouira, it helps us to iron out any problems and give our guests an exceptional holiday experience. As you can see from the majority of previous reviews, we are normally reasonably successful.You do not mention in your review that during your stay you had a couple of bedding 'accidents' which our housekeeper cleared up for you. I hope it wasn't embarrassment that resulted in your feeling so uncomfortable.
Written 20 November 2016. This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Siskin10
Siskin10
Glyn Ceiriog, United Kingdom6 contributions
Wonderful place to stay
We had seven days in this lovely Riad and enjoyed every minute. We were welcomed by Redoin, who I must say, was one of the people that made our stay quite magical. Along with Zara who looked after us so very well. Breakfasts were a treat, evening meals most enjoyable. We were so sad to leave and could quite easily have stayed there for ever.
Visited September 2016 Travelled as a couple
Written 29 September 2016. This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

John A
John A
The Hague, The Netherlands34 contributions
Can'r recommend this place highly enough
I traveled with my two sons (both in their 20s) and we had a great visit. Dar Qawi really is an excellent place to stay. Great location 5 minutes from the sea front, 2 minutes from the heart of the Medina. Lovely breakfast prepared by Zara the housekeeper, who will also cook excellent evening meals at a very reasonable cost. The Riad is very comfortable and beautifully maintained. And all this for less than the amount I paid for one room at Riad on my last visit to Essaouira.
Visited March 2016 Travelled with family
Written 9 March 2016. This review is the subjective opinion of an individual traveller and not of Tripadvisor LLC nor of its partners. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

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What this rental offers
Entertainment
  • Stereo system
  • Television
Property features
  • Staff on property
Things to do
  • Fishing spots available
  • Watersports
  • Cycling areas
Kitchen and dining
  • Refrigerator
  • Kettle
  • Microwave
  • Cooker
Location info
  • Beachfront/Lakeside
Wi-fi and internet
  • Wi-fi
Bathroom and laundry
  • Iron
  • Linens provided
  • Towels provided
  • Washer
Indoor amenities
  • Internet access
  • Cable television
Nearby
  • Golf course (within 30 mins drive)
  • Horse riding facilities
  • Tennis court
Services
  • Housekeeping included
Outdoor amenities
  • Balcony
  • Terrace

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Map
About the neighbourhood
Essaouira is listed as a UNESCO world heritage site and it has several interesting historic buildings. It is also a working fishing port and every day you can greet the returning fishing boats with their plentiful catch which you can buy there and then in the harbour. Essaouira also boasts eight music festivals with The Gnaoua World Music Festival being the most famous. It attracts musicians from all over the world and during the four days at the end of June when it takes place, the little town swells up by half a million visitors! Essaouira's main attraction is, of course, it's long white beach. Perfect for sun bathing with several inviting beach clubs and restaurants. Camel and horse riding and trekking are very popular as are quad biking and kite surfing, wind surfing, hiking and many other action sports. A visit to the hammam is a wonderful experience as is a shopping spree in the souk. Local craftsmen create beautiful furniture and objects of desire and in Thuja wood and there is also a thriving art scene. Argan oil which is used in cooking as well as in cosmetics is also produced in the area. Last but not least, the many little cafés and restaurants offer delicious fare as well as the opportunity to sit, relaqx and soak up the inimitable atmosphere of Essaouira.
Access
Car not needed
How to get there
Essaouira has its own International airport however, for direct flights from Paris and London and some other European cities. Many visitors to Essaouira fly to Marrakech but Agadir is also a possibility. Both are about 170 km from Essaouira. the drive from Marrakech is very straightforward and takes about 2.5 hours, the drive from Agadir is much more scenic but due to the winding coastal road it takes a good half an hour longer. Taxis from either cost in the region of Euro 75 one way. From Marrakech there are also comfortable air conditioned coaches, notably Supratours, which go to Essaouira several times a day. Car hire is also easily available.
Activities nearby
Fishing spots availableGolf course (within 30 mins drive)Horse riding facilitiesTennis courtWatersports

Things to know
Cancellation policy
  • 100% refund within 24 hours after booking (provided the stay is at least 60 days away).
  • 50% refund* if you cancel at least 8 weeks before check-in
  • 25% refund* if you cancel at least 4 weeks before check-in
  • No refund available once booking is confirmed
Notes from owner
Occasional discounts for last minute bookings. Please contact owner. 25% non refundable deposit due on reservation, balance (75%) payable no later than one month before arrival. A separate security deposit of £100 is requested which is refunded within 10 days of departure providing no major breakages have occurred. All rates are for the entire house and include breakfast and daily maid service as well as concierge services. Three nights minimum booking except during the Gnaoua Festival, in August and over Christmas and New Year when only weekly bookings or longer are taken. There is a 10% discount for bookings over two weeks. please enquire for special long term rental rates.

About this property

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Property #HL222137670

Frequently Asked Questions about Dar Qawi - Riad by the Sea

Dar Qawi - Riad by the Sea is able to accommodate up to 6 guests. See all property details.

Dar Qawi - Riad by the Sea has 3 bathrooms available. See all property details.

Dar Qawi - Riad by the Sea has 3 bedrooms available. See all property details.

Stays at Dar Qawi - Riad by the Sea must last at least 2 nights. See all property details.

Dar Qawi - Riad by the Sea - UPDATED 2024 - Holiday Rental in Essaouira - Tripadvisor