Salam Aleikum

Hi, i'm writing this blog page to share information with all you wanderlust souls out there. Living in Morocco comes with lots of bizarre and unexpected events, which i thought you may enjoy reading about and sharing in the laughter.



My family and I moved to Marrakech 6 years ago from London. The beginning of a huge adventure for us. Choosing which country was right for us to live in had been an extremely long and tiring process. Having made a choice to move to Marrakech, was in itself a big box ticked. We had two criteria lists, one for our business (opening and running a guesthouse) and one for personal. On top of this it had to feel right at a soul level for my husband and I, both who are from very different backgrounds.



Phase two of our journey then began. Setting up home in Morocco, also a non English speaking country with a very different culture to ours. Marrakech is a real melting pot of; languages, tribes, rich, poor, city slickers, country peasants. It sometimes reminds me of that place Luke Skywalker went to, to buy that space ship, with all those different intergalactic aliens. (Any one know what it was called?) After months of beauroctratic paperwork, rendez vous with people who don't turn up and renting from an unpleasant woman for a large amount of money, we bought ourselves a villa. This was not in the plan as we didn't want to tie up our capital in a home. I now realise it is one of the best things we could have done. When you've had a really difficult day here to be able to close the door and relax in your own place really balances you.

Zamzam Riad & Spa was eventually created out of love and we hope you will come and stay and be pampered in our luxury boutique riad.

Creating the Guest House

We had decided to buy land and build a country guesthouse as per our business plan, about 10 double rooms and suites. The dream was to create a holistic retreat and build our house on the same plot. We were going to have an organic vegetable garden and provide a Moroccan Spa.



Land in Marrakech particularly, went mad. Prices going up daily, lots of people fishing but not really wanting to sell. There is also a problem here of title. ie not much land is titled and to buy land without a title is very difficult, unless you have a lot of time on your hands and like a gamble. We looked at more land than you can shake a stick at, drank more mint tea than you can imagine and got totally no where. It can take weeks to even get a price. You may be being shown a piece of land that isn't for sale or has already been sold. After a year of this my husband said 'that is it!, we are buying a riad!'



I had a total nervous breakdown and couldn't talk to anyone for three days. He then said this doesn't have to be the end.......

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Moroccan Berber Carpets - Beni Ouarain Rugs and much more in Marrakesh

I'm very excited to launch my new online carpet store with other very sexy finds including some stunning handira, embroidered cusions and poufs and colourful leather poufs.

Zamzam Riad our hotel and Camp Adounia our comfortable beach and desert camp are on the website too because its a good way for you to see the carpets and interiors in a live situation.

Most of you following this blog know of my love affair with Beni Ouarain carpets and Azilal rugs from the Berber mountain regions of high and middle Atas in Morocco so I hope you will enjoy having a look around this site at my stock which will now be regularly updated.

On the site you can also see weight as well as size and it automatically gives you a shipping quote for your country with DHL.

Enjoy and email me if you need more information info@moroccanberbercarpets.com or call me to book a carpet trip.











Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Desert Camp Christmas and New Year in Morocco

Come and spend a wonderful Christmas and New Year at Camp Adounia in the Sahara of Morocco.  Perfect for groups we have 7 tents, fantastic chefs, wonderful musicians.  Groups can take the Spa ladies with them for treatments.

A superb new year under the stars which are amazing at this time of year.  The camp is only 40 minutes from Mhamid in the Moroccan Sahara Desert but still in the most amazing sand dunes and away from it all.  There are many cultural tours to do as well which include visiting nomad settlements, oasis and ancient kasbahs.

Come and party under the stars at one with the dunes on New Years Eve!

Email me for more information team@campadounia.com - 00212661215062













Sunday, September 21, 2014

Comfortable Eco Desert Camp - Sahara Morocco

Our comfortable Ecological Desert Camp in the Desert of Morocco is now open for the new season.  Situated in pretty dunes with stylish interiors from Emma's shop

Because the camp is only 40 minutes from Mhamid you can go on a number of our cultural tours.  These are brilliant with families.  There is a wonderful museum in Mhamid an ancient Kasbah made from mud and filled with hitorical items from the history of this region and its tribes.  Mhamid also has a lovely oasis and a number of ancient Kasbah's and shrines.  Its worth doing a camel treck for one or two hours around Mhamid.  When at the camp you already have your driver with you which is a great advantage.  Our desert guide Iklaf can accompany you on a half day historical tour to a number or interesting sites such as the Oasis of Nesrat or why not go and visit a nomadic home and chat about their way of life.  On a half day trip out of the desert camp we pack you up a nice picknic to take.










Kids love to run in the dunes and the sandboarding from the camp is great fun.  The winter months are a fabulous time to visit the south of Morocco and enjoy the experience of the Sahara as the stars are amazing at this time of year.

Combined with our English Riad hotel in Marrakech Medina - Zamzam we can put a wonderful package together for you.  For a Marrakech and Desert trip you need a minimum of 5 nights but 6 or 7 allow you more time to spend in Marrakech Medina as well.  The drive to the camp is with our experienced drivers in landcruisers over the Atlas Mountains, this in itself is a feast for the eyes passing through the wonderful Berber Towns and scenery.  Only 4 hours across to Ait Ben Haddou where you get a chance to explore these magical mud kasbahs.  You stay in Ait Ben Haddou for the night - we have excellent partner hotels en route who we have linked with to provide a special journey for you.  The following morning you follow the Draa Valley, a very pretty route indeed with millions of palms and purple mountains along the Draa River.  You pass through Ourzazate and Zagora before reaching the desert Camp Adounia - 5 hours later.

Once arriving at our super comfy desert camp you are welcomed by our Manager the lovely Samir who will show you around and provide mint tea and dates.  Dinner under the stars in the Sahara Desert is an experience never to be forgotten.

If desert trekking is your thing we can combine your camp visit with one to 3 nights nomadic camping with camels.

Email me - team@campadounia.com for more information and bespoke itineraries.  The Moroccan Coast can also be incorporated.

After March our camp moves to a private beach for the summer months - visit our website to see photos and activites for the beach camp.  Mountain biking and surf lessons are just some of the excitement.

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Camp Adounia - Luxury Eco Camp website launch - Desert and Beach Camp 2014

Yahoo our website is now live for the new Camp Adounia - I wanted to share it all with you so you could have a look and send me your comments.  I also hope you will all come and visit us soon.  On 8 September 2014 we return to the Sahara and in November we have the Taragaulte Music Festival and a fantastic healing retreat with Master - Jai Hari Singh.

The Camp is available for retreat companies as we have full equipment including yoga mats and blankets, cushions and yoga tent.  We are trained in vegetarian and vegan cooking.  The beach and the desert offer two amazing experiences both very different with a chance to get away from it all with a touch of luxury.  The tents have en-suite eco bathrooms and a wonderful team to look after you and organise surf, camel treks or go sand boarding.

Email us for bookings or further information team@campadounia.com from one night to a weeks booking.  Perfect to combine with Zamzam Riad in Marrakech and if you would like help planning a bespoke itinerary let us know.










Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Kundalini Morocco - Release your fears and trauma and liberate - Luxury Sahara Reteat - Transformative Retreat

“We invite you to share this process with us through deep meditation. You will be able to rebuild from the bottom up your family relationships, you will become aware of painful memories from your childhood and release yourselves from unnecessary burdens of the past. We heal what prevents us from moving forward and prospering in life… It’s time for us to be happy, to leave our fears, our traumas and our feelings of panic behind…”Jai Hari Singh




Rebirthing, Liberation, Resurrection is a therapeutic workshop which is based on yoga and “meditation/medication” which will take us through our personal histories (ancestors, conception, pregnancy, childhood, teenage years) thanks to practising deep meditation, according to Yogi Bhajan’s teachings.

This therapeutic workshop contributes to the deep transformation of the Self, thanks to the internal work through the technology that Yogi Bhajan taught us, building a link at that very moment, with the heart and the internal self. And above all, this process will take us, at a subconscious level, to the mental, physical and spiritual space of “cleaning the house” from any sensation of pain, traumas, weakening of emotions which have not been adequately assimilated, frustrations, fear that dwells in us, anger that result from all these undigested feelings, depressions and “heart´s illnesses” which hinder literally the awareness of the present moment, because of the anxieties we experience all the time and which separate us from the sensation of “the divine presence of our Self”

We will explore together our liberation through a process of rebirthing and personal resurrection thanks to this ancient technology of healing our “Self”. We will do that in the best possible environment for contemplation and silence: the Sahara desert in the heart of the South of Morocco.



Who may be interested?
  • Everybody who has a desire to work internally and spiritually through yoga and meditation (you do not need any previous experience)
  • Everybody who already practise any technique of yoga and meditation and wants to broaden and understand better his meditative experience and the self
  • Anybody who is a yoga teacher
  •  Anyone decided to explore the paths of the soul



    Whats included:
  • Airport transfers to the Hotel and back
  • 3 nights in luxury at Zamzam Riad, Medina Marrakech (1st, 2d and last night)
  • 1 night in Ait Ben Haddou with views of the kasbah
  • 3 nights in the Sahara at Luxury Eco Camp Adounia
  • Jai Hari Singh – Workshop- Yoga- Meditation programme “Rebirthing, Liberation, Resurrection”
  • Yoga mats and cushions
  • All vegetarian meals (Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner + Tea all day/Water)
  • Non alcoholic drinks
  • Landcruiser transport with AC to the desert with professional drivers 
  • Injury Wafa Insurance; covers injury to clients at Camp Adounia and Zamzam – it is recommended all guests take out their own travel insurance and to travel with a credit card in case of emergencies.  Guests need to tell their bank they are traveling to Morocco so that the bank allows them to use their card here.
  • Total life transformation!
For more information and reservation email - zamzamriad@gmail.com or call 
00212 661215062  
http://www.moroccoretreats.com/the-retreats/luxury-sahara-retreat/

Friday, June 13, 2014

Spa and Shop Breaks Marrakech Medina - Zamzam Riad & Spa

Moroccan Journeys have just launched new Spa and shop weekends at Zamzam Riad this is a brilliant way to be pampered in a luxury boutique hotel in the ancient city walls and enjoy the shopping that the local artisans of Marrakech Souks have to offer.

http://moroccanjourneys.com/complete-tours-morocco/complete-tours-morocco-spa-shop-breaks/

Make sure you fly out with empty suit cases because you will be sure to fill them.  A brilliant long weekend and you can even add a traditional cooking class or extra beauty treatments in the Spa if you wish.  Zamzam is ideal for ladies traveling on their own too as we have day and night managers, full concierge and a guardien to walk with you to the taxis.


 

Sunday, April 27, 2014

Yoga and Spa Retreat - Luxury Camp with private beach and Sun Morocco - 8-14 May last minute discount!

We are getting ready for our May Beach Retreat at our new ecological Camp Adounia set is a stunning view with your own deserted beach and guaranteed sun.

You will have access to daily yoga with the lovely Daisy Booth, brilliant chef and nutritionist, Spa team offering a range of beauty treatments, reiki, reflexology and excellent massage.

Only 2.5 hours pretty drive from Marrakech and 3 hours from the UK and Europe its a wonderful retreat and chance to have a real break and get away from it all.

In the evenings you have the chance to sit around the camp fire and listen to real music played by our musicians before falling into bed for a wonderful nights sleep in our comfortable beds and wonderful linen.  The tents are decorated in wonderful textiles and carpets and are super comfy.

In your free time there is the chance to walk on deserted beaches, have a surf lesson, ride camels at sunset or just read a book in a hammock.

Phone Emma for more information or send an email to zamzamriad@gmail.com