Kasbah Bab Ourika, Morocco
Nestled on a hilltop in the Atlas Mountains, Morocco’s Kasbah Bab Ourika boasts a breathtaking view. Sitting above the fertile Ourika Valley, the landscape provides a stunning outlook for the hotel with fields of green, running rivers, citrus orchards and olive groves.
The hotel’s design was a collaboration between Architect Argus Hardy, Interior designer Romain Michel-Meniere and Kasbah Bab Ourika’s owner, Stephen Skinner. The intention was to create a space that felt luxurious whilst promoting a deep respect for Moroccan traditional craftsmanship and local materials. The group employed traditional techniques for the build in order to echo the aesthetic of the nearby Berber villages, using materials such as limestone, mud brick walls and palm trunk ceilings with features such as meurtière windows and Beni Ourain carpets.
Oversized glass panes and doors are used throughout the hotel to take advantage of the sweeping vistas and guest rooms are peppered with locally sourced textiles, artefacts and objects that reference daily Berber life.
Artworks by local artists such as Alan Keohane and Beatriz Maximo are also on display throughout the Kasbah, evoking a sense of place by showcasing photographic stories of life in the neighbouring villages.
Guests have the choice of taking meals in the colonnaded restaurant, the gardens or from the privacy of their own rooms with their secluded, expansive terraces. Serving traditional Moroccan dishes and simple European fare, the food here is prepared using organic produce from the hotel’s own kitchen garden and fragrant meat is sourced from the nearby market.
Just a half hour away from Marrakech’s International airport, Kasbah Bab Ourika paints a romantic portrait of the Moroccan lifestyle and offers guests boutique lodging in a landscape that is at once wild and charming. It’s a place designed to pass the days slowly, which is exactly what we feel like doing here.
Credits: Kasbah Bab Ourika
Photography: Alan Keohane