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 11 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 Marrakesh, 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.

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.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Zamzam Rocks! - Marrakech Birthday Party

We had a stonking evening at Zamzam recently. A 40th Birthday Party Moroccan Style. We started with Mojitos and canapes on the patio, followed by a Moroccan lounge on the terrace under the stars with bbq, Moroccan buffet and dancing.
Even Marcus got into the groove, not sure what he's looking at though!
The audience could take no more they all got up to shake their bootie with the belly dancer and drummers. After the Ryanair early flight we encourage guests to have a hammam and massage to shake off that awful fatigue.
I hate taking shots with flash as you don't get the warm lighting of the evening on the terrace, so this shot is blurred but gives you more of a feeling for the night.
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Marrakech Wedding Cakes - Zamzam Riad

I have just survived an exhausting weekend of wedding cake making. Two quite different cakes and I must say the first was a real labour of love as each layer was different. Chocolate devils food cake, Madeira and Red Velvet. It has been unusually hot in Marrakech so I had real dramas with the fondant icing too which insisted on sticking to everything. I then had an hour trip on a horrendous dirt track to deliver this cake to the Marrakech Desert. It took 3 of us to deliver it as we bounced around in my 4 wheel drive with me shouting bump.
This more contemporary cake was a bit easier as it was all Madeira however the stiff Moroccan ribbon was no easy fight. All in all I think they turned out ok.
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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 at that time, 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 we 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....... It wasn't I have now built an Ecological Camp Adounia in the Sahara Desert!