“Private villas for 2-8, with the luxurious benefits of a hotel, set in bucolic gardens just 10km from Marrakech”
There are 3 villas, set well apart from one another to ensure peace and privacy. All have ground-floor dining and sitting rooms with open wood-burning fireplaces, antique doors, separate pantries with tea and coffee facilities and an honesty drinks fridge, and a private garden with a dining table and plunge pool to cool off in. Villas Laklak and Sannor also have a Berber tent set in the garden, perfect for relaxing in the shade with a glass of mint tea.
Villa Laklak is decorated in dramatic red, black and white, and it can be rented by the floor or in its entirety. There are 2 suites: 1 upstairs with a double bedroom, and a Family Suite downstairs with 1 double and 1 twin bedroom. Both master bedrooms have lavish bathrooms with sunken baths and tadelakt walk-in showers. The Suite (upstairs) has a four-poster bed, a living area and private roof terrace with sunloungers and a shaded seating area.
The larger Villa Sannor also sleeps 6, and its decor is pared-down and contemporary, but cleverly combined with Berber designs. There are 2 spacious ground-floor double bedrooms which contain large baths, framed by handpainted Berber tent posts. Upstairs the master suite, with a grand four-poster bed, adjoins an enormous tadelakt bathroom and gives onto roof terraces.
Largest of all is Villa Taos, which sleeps 8 - this is considered the most private option as it is at the end of the property. With a similar layout to Sannor, it's decorated in rich earthy tones, with more of an African feel. It also has a large, secluded garden. There are 2 ground-floor bedrooms, and 2 first-floor bedrooms - a suite and adjacent twin room. All are ensuite with both a bath and shower on the ground floor, a shower only on the first floor. There's the option to connect the first-floor bedrooms, with their own separate entrance. If you book it for 6 people, the fourth bedroom will be locked.
The staff will serve meals wherever you’d like them: in your room, at your dining table, in your summerhouse, on your villa terrace, in the salon or in the dining room by the pool. A snack menu is available all day, including hummus and crudités, curried pea and apple soup, watermelon salad with feta, or sesame and vermicelli salad, plus children’s choices such as pizza, spaghetti bolognese and fruit salad.
A delicious breakfast (included in the rates) typically consists of freshly squeezed orange juice, bread with homemade jams, Moroccan pastries, fresh fruit salad, local eggs and tea or coffee (cafetiere).
In the evening, a set menu is provided that changes each day of the week - it includes vegetarian options. Expect dishes such as white bean salad with orange blossom carrot salad, chicken or fish tagine with rosemary potatoes and vegetables, and to finish, delicious ricotta with honey and sesame or poached pears in cinnamon.
Unfortunately there are no other eateries within easy striking distance should you fancy a change of scene, but it you want to head into Marrakech for the evening, Francis and Dawn can recommend good restaurants there.
i-escape's Best for Kids Awards 2013
Winner: Best for Families Large and Small
Fawakay Villas is a brilliant place to stay with children: it’s a way of visiting Marrakech without being constantly in the thick of the hustle and bustle, and the pool, tennis courts and table tennis are a great way to entertain and relax in-between trips to the centre. There are plenty of exciting activities on offer such as princess spa treatments from the local henna lady. Dawn and Francis have 4 children of their own and are exceptionally well set up to cater for families, for example all kids receive Moroccan pyjamas on arrival as a gift.
Bear in mind is that you are a long way from shops selling nappies, baby food and toys. Parents of younger guests can request specifics to be stocked in your room so you don't incur extra baggage charges if flying with budget airlines into Marrakech. Special food requests also catered for.
The Family Suite is ideal as it has 1 double and 1 twin room, and can accommodate an extra bed and baby cot. We'd plump for one of the villas: the largest sleeps up to 8 people and Villa Taos’ 2 upstairs rooms can be connected to make a family suite as can two rooms in Villa Laklak - useful for parents with small children. Kids can spend the night in the traditional Moroccan tents in the garden if staying in Laklak or Sannor. All the bathrooms have a bathtub.
Babysitting available, see rates. The price increases after midnight.
Baby monitors available to borrow; they work everywhere on the grounds here.
Remember baby and child equipment may be limited or need pre-booking
There's an all-day snack menu; kids can have an early tea and there's a kids menu with the likes of spaghetti bolognese, plus a picnic menu for day trips. Francis can devise mocktails for kids for dinner.
The plunge pools and the pools are not fenced or supervised.