What we love
The Kasbah Tamadot represents the ultimate chill-out experience. The peaceful setting, breath-taking views and luxurious facilities promote an air of calm that allows you to truly re-charge your batteries - even for a short stay. Sir Richard Branson chose well when he spotted this gem!
Setting the scene
A magical mountain retreat nestled in the Atlas Mountains near the small village of Asni. Sir Richard Branson loved it so much he bought the Kasbah during one of his ballooning expeditions and transformed it into the Atlas Mountain's most luxurious hotel. Pure relaxation is what's on offer here and spectacular views. Sir Richard's commitment to helping the local community is also apparent with villagers employed and specially trained to work at the hotel. The service is first class - and you're doing your bit to support the locals too!
The rooms are exquisite and all uniquely decorated, using traditional Moroccan furnishings and antiques; the previous owner was an Italian antiques dealer who collected artefacts from all over the world. In true Virgin style, there are no televisions, so you can truly escape from the outside world. The 10 superior and deluxe rooms are beautiful and the 8 larger suites offer more luxury, with the option of a private swimming pool. The master suite is a mini-replica of the Kasbah, with 360-degree views of the scenery. You can even choose one of 10 Berber tents (far more glamorous than they sound!), situated in the gardens, some of which have their own private plunge pools.
The breath-taking terrace views and intimate fireside bar make every meal at the Kanoun restaurant a magical experience. You can choose to dine al fresco around the candle-lit pool, underneath the stars on the rooftop terrace or somewhere private just for 2! The food is a combination of sophisticated Moroccan, African and international cuisine, with home-grown herbs and vegetables from the Kasbah Tamadot gardens. Sir Richard apparently persuaded his favourite Raymond Blanc-trained chef, Jean Mundell, away from Necker Island (his privately owned island resort in the Caribbean) to bring her flair to the menu. The wine list is also particularly impressive.
Unwind and relax - these are 2 essential activities when visiting Kasbah Tamadot. The five-star spa with an indoor pool provides a haven for pampering the body and mind; the traditional Moroccan Hammam is not to be missed. The infinity pool overlooks the mountainside with awe-inspiring views and the gym is great for a healthy workout. A variety of energetic activities are available - from tennis to trekking to hot air ballooning. The gardens are a delight to explore and you can even take a cookery lesson using freshly picked produce to learn a traditional Moroccan dish. On colder days simply curl up in front of the fire with a good book from the library. In the evenings, stargazing is a must and can be fascinating on a clear night. The nearest village is Asni, which is particularly worth visiting on Saturday for the weekly market, or you can visit local Berber villages, head into the souks of Marrakesh or discover the Atlas Mountains - by 4x4 or by mule! By the way, don't be alarmed if you see a camel, a donkey or a mule wandering around the gardens - these are pets of the hotel and very much part of the family!
Children are welcome at the hotel with a packed programme of activities during the school holidays (nothing specific for kids during term time). These range from riding the resident mules, camels and donkeys, learning to cook traditional Moroccan dishes, treasure hunts, mini manicures, 4x4 mountain rides, table tennis tournaments, a Moroccan tea party and nature walks to learn about the local flora and fauna. There's a young diners menu at the restaurant, babysitting is available to book in advance and DVDs and board games can be found in the lounge
Kasbah Tamadot is approximately 45 minutes private transfer time from Marrakesh Menara Airport.