Fes, Morocco’s cultural capital, was our second stop during our 10-Day Moroccan Adventures. I am not sure if we loved Fes more, or our stay at Riad Mayfez Suites and Spa.
If you have been to Fes, you might be wondering how I could compare the experience of exploring a city full of richness (in all aspects) to staying at a Riad? But hear me out, Riad Mayfez Suites and Spa is hands down one of the top 5 hotels we have stayed at in our whole entire lives (i.e. in the 30+ countries that Vinay and I have visited).
Now that’s saying a lot… But let’s just say that our trip to Fes (in fact Morocco) wouldn’t have felt complete without spending a few nights at Riad Mayfez Suites and Spa…
And honestly, I do not even know where to begin describing our time at this magnificent and luxurious Riad. But I will do my best to do justice to put in writing what one could only live and experience…
Although, I am not sure if I should begin by talking about how everyone who works here goes above and beyond to ensure that you have one of the best times of your lives and makes sure that your stay here is unforgettable? Or, if I should start by explaining how stunning this Riad is and how it makes you pinch yourself several times a day just to be sure that this is real and not just a dream?
Dating from the 19th century, this Patrician house is set on the Andalusian Palace and Garden Route and is only a 12-minute walk from Boujloud Square.
This tranquil, cheerful, and cozy Riad is extremely close to all the main attractions in Fes, and yet, feels quarantined from the noise and the chaos of the nearby Medina and tourist spots. Riad Mayfez is a discrete luxury at the heart of the Fez Medina.
Dominique, the extremely hospitable owner, has done an exceptional job renovating this Riad and in the process, she has beautifully combined the Moroccan and the French, and the traditional and the modern interior decorating styles together. We had the opportunity to chat with her briefly, and in that short span of time, we could really tell how passionate she is about the Riad and about making sure that every guest at the Riad feels right at home.
Imad and Intissar, people who work at Mayfez, were exceptional. At the time of check-in, since we arrived late at night Imad was so gracious and kind to accompany us to the restaurant we wanted to go to for dinner. And he also promptly came back to pick us up after dinner so we wouldn’t get lost in the labyrinths of Fes. The employees here don’t just do their jobs, but they put the needs, comfort, and safety of their guests above all else.
The day (rather night) we arrived at Riad Mayfez was a really long one which involved a lot of sitting in the car (while admiring the beauty of the country and the changing landscapes all along) and driving an entire day, sometimes in the midst of a heavy downpour and at times maneuvering through long lines of cars at the toll gates. All while stopping only for an hour for lunch and a few quick stops along the way.
So, we couldn’t wait to get to the Riad and relax. But what awaited us once we arrived not only made us forget all about how long and tiring the day had been but also kinda made us feel like we had stumbled upon a majestic palace hidden behind the small alleys of Fes.
Riad Mayfez is big but only has 5 luxury suites in total, so you can only imagine the size of each of these 5 suites on-site. The design and aesthetics of each suite are different from the other, and some suites also have a private balcony with views of the 3281 ft² garden and the swimming pool.
Our suite, called the Isfahan Suite, or should I call it a private mansion? I guess I will go with the latter! It was majestic and ginormous – the intricate details of the beautiful stairway leading up to the main living floor was the first hint of letting us know that we were entering a palace. This duplex structure instantly made us fall in love with what would be our humble abode for the next few days.
The high ceilings, the large windows overlooking the courtyard, the tastefully decorated space (including the draped curtains, the cushions, the wall art), the large bathroom with a giant marble sunken bath (and heated towel rack, say what now?), hand painted woodwork, and the secluded bedroom on the top level which overlooked the main living space, everything was impeccable, and the attention to details was commendable.
And that wasn’t all, our suite also came with a huge private balcony with a view – a view overlooking the rest of the Riad including the swimming pool and the garden below, plus a breathtaking view of the city of Fes in the foreground with the mountains in the background. Watching the picturesque sunrise from the balcony as the fog lifted in the wee hours of the morning was both a surreal experience and a perfect beginning to our day!
Starting our day with a mix of Continental and Moroccan inspired breakfast listening to a vintage gramophone playing music in the background was just what we needed to fuel ourselves for a long day ahead of us getting lost in Fes. The breakfast spread included different kinds of bread, butter, jams, baguettes, crepes, eggs, olives, fresh fruits, fresh fruit juice, and a hot beverage, all served in a bright and beautifully decorated dining space (did I mention violet-colored velvet sofas? yup, I was sold!).
And when we were tired from venturing out in the alleys (rather annoyed with the non-stop rain) and came back to our safe haven, freshly cooked meals were waiting for us to indulge our tastebuds. We had one of the best dinners in Morocco at Mayfez, and we were so glad that we decided to get back to the Riad early (something we rarely do when traveling) so we could dine at the Riad. The dining area, again, like everywhere else in the resort, is delightfully decorated, and had a lovely romantic vibe to it.
Tip: Lunch and dinner are prepared in the Riad upon request. Just let them know the time and what you would like to have from their menu beforehand.
P.S: The Riad also provided us a local cell phone in case we got lost or needed to get in touch with them for anything. They even packed us a selection of oriental pastries (beghrir, hercha, and mlaoui) for the road, told you, thoughtful and warm in everything they do!
All in all, Riad Mayfez Suites and Spa is a luxurious take on a traditional Riad. If you like an intimate private setting with classy 5-star hotel service, then look no further. Mayfez is a place reminiscent of the palaces of the past. And each refined detail is a tribute to the deliciously nostalgic elegance of a sophisticated lifestyle.
Whether you are coming here solo (like one of the other guests we met at the Riad), or traveling as a couple (and looking for a romantic getaway) or going with your girlfriends (imagine having the whole place to yourselves (and spending time by the pool chit chatting, eating and drinking, or indulging in their spa experience, heaven!), or traveling with kids (like us), the Riad Mayfez Suites and Spa is made for all.
Our stay at Mayfez felt too short, maybe one day we will be back for more…
“Travel Is Not Reward For Working, It’s Education For Living.”