Madada Mogador

Essaouira & Atlantic Coast, Morocco Book from Book from £101 per night

Chic hotel built on the Essaouiran town ramparts, offering superb views across the beach and harbourfront
It is arguable that Christine, the glamorous French owner of this sleek maison d’hotes, has acquired one of the best hotel locations in Essaouira. Being just steps from the medina, when you have haggled your way to a new bag and a bevvy of spices, you can retreat to the hotel’s sheltered terrace for a cooling complimentary glass of lemonade overlooking the beach.

This is a welcoming place to kick back and relax; the interiors are spacious and stylishly renovated, with elegant bedrooms in shades of cream-and-taupe. The restaurant serves delicious Moroccan cuisine, which you can learn to replicate in the hotel's cookery school - a translator will even help you gather spices from the souk. On chilly nights, sip cocktails in the bar and come bedtime you’ll find a hot water bottle warming the sheets. Christine has even more projects in the pipeline, including a concept store, but her focus remains on making your stay the best it can be.


  • A hard-to-beat location on Essaouira’s ramparts and a fantastic roof terrace with panoramic beach and harbour views
  • Excellent staff provide warm and efficient service
  • A superb ground-floor restaurant/bar, plus a well-regarded cookery school for honing your skills
  • Guests are given a mobile phone on arrival preprogramed with the hotel’s number and other recommended places to eat.
  • Families are welcome although it is a quiet, relaxing sort of space


  • During 2016, there was some work being done on the towns sea defences which may still be ongoing. That said, to our knowledge this has not been noisy or disruptive for guests
  • Some rooms look out onto the shared terrace but the one way glass means no one can see in
  • The nearest parking is in the public harbour lots which are about a 2 minute walk away

Best time to go

Avoid August when the town gets swamped by large numbers of visitors from home and abroad. Spring is much quieter and from March onwards you're almost bound to have good weather. There is an excellent music festival in June, with Gnaoua and other tribal performers.

Our top tips

Moroccan cookery classes are available in the hotel's funky Atelier Madada cookery school. Each budding chef has their own work surface and utensils, with dishes ranging from traditional tagine to the more complex pastilla. Afterwards, enjoy your creations over a glass of wine in the tranquil Oriental lounge - what better way to immerse yourself in the local culinary culture?

Great for...

City Style
  • Boutique Hotel
  • 8
  • Restaurant and bar
  • All ages welcome
  • Open all year
  • Pool
  • Spa Treatments
  • WiFi
  • Pet Friendly
  • Disabled Access
  • Beach Nearby
  • Off-street Parking
  • Restaurants Nearby
  • Air Conditioning
  • Guest Lounge
  • Terrace
  • Garden
  • Gym


The beige-and-sandstone shades of the bedrooms give a soothing uniformity to Madada Mogador. These were once the upper floors of a rich Souiri merchant’s house so all are blessed with high ceilings and an airiness enhanced by the pleasing tang of sea air.

The Loft Suite is the largest with 2 bedrooms, a palatial living area and direct street access. The spacious Suite Cherifa has a wonderful private sea-view terrace overlooking the city ramparts, harbour front and beach. The Madada room has a balcony facing the harbour; Mogador has one too, as well as a mezzanine-level salon. We were quite taken with simple Pacha and Salma rooms, whose entrances lead onto the spacious communal roof terrace. Perfect for lounging on its array of low-slung wicker chairs.

Every ensuite bathroom has ivory tadelakt showers or roomy bathtubs, plus beautiful aged brass hand-basins from Fes. All rooms come with a Bose iPod dock, WiFi, air-conditioning and heaters.

The subtle creamy tones are continued in the lobby and lounge areas and the overall feel is one of space and calm… exactly the type of atmosphere you’d expect a former flight attendant to yearn for. Thankfully, Christine followed her desire and Air France’s loss is our gain.

Features include:

  • Air conditioning
  • Central heating
  • Cots Available
  • Extra beds
  • Internet access
  • Ipod dock


The generous breakfast is a beautiful array of pastries, yogurt, fresh fruit and juice, eggs and pancakes. It can be served in your room or on the terrace… also the perfect setting for afternoon lemonade and cake. Of course, many also gather here for the requisite sunset aperitif.

As night sets in it’s time to meander down to La Table by Madada, the elegant and buzzy restaurant (open to both hotel guests and the public). Food is French and classic Moroccan, with an emphasis on fish (lemon-grilled mullets, monkfish tagines) and indulgent desserts. You’ll be welcomed you with a cocktail list and jazzy music. We sat by the fireplace and settled in for a cosy evening of superb food and delightful service.

Features include:

  • Bar
  • Breakfast
  • Restaurant
  • Restaurants nearby


  • Sip cocktails and enjoy a sunset view on the spacious terrace with fabulous coast views
  • Go shopping at the souks (markets): friendlier, cheaper and often better quality than in Marrakech, especially for wooden furniture and carvings
  • Explore the sea ramparts of this ancient Portuguese (and formerly) Roman town
  • Unwind with a traditional hammam or thalassotherapy spa in town; both can be organsied by the staff at Madada Mogador
  • Windsurfing and kite surfing from the sandy beach are popular sports (equipment can be hired)
  • Go quad-biking or take camel rides in the sand dunes; horseriding can be arranged from a nearby stable

Activities on site or nearby include:

  • Cooking classes
  • Nightlife
  • Shopping / markets
  • Swimming
  • Windsurfing


Although children are catered for there aren't any specific activities for them, so it's not ideal for active noisy kids. That said, the staff will do their best to make families welcome and can assist you in arranging local activities such as camel trekking and quad-biking.

Best for:

Teens (over 12)

Family friendly accommodation:

The Loft Suite has a mezzanine double bedroom and a twin room, plus 2 bathrooms and lots of living space. Most rooms can hold a baby cot.


Babysitting available by arrangement.

Baby equipment:

Baby cots available on request.

Remember  baby and child equipment may be limited or need pre-booking

Kid Friendly:

Our guests' ratings...

Based on 5 independent reviews from i-escape guests


Cute hotel in a very convenient location on the edge of the Medina and in direct proximity to the old port and the beach. Beautiful views from the terrace overlooking the sea. Delicious seafood restaurant in house.


Excellent atmosphere and service.


Wonderful hotel with top service. We loved the rooms we got - the first two nights in a large room with a veranda, the last two night in a suite. It should be mentioned there are 2 cats at the hotel - for those with allergic reactions.


This is a very well designed riad/hotel with great attention to detail and friendly, attentive staff. The owner, Christine, is French and very congenial and charming. The restaurant, La Table Madada, was the best cooking we ate in Morocco though it is really a French restaurant with Moroccan flavours. We had the Madada room on the first floor. It is beautiful, has a private terrace and sea views, but 2 reasons for not giving it top marks; the terrace overlooks the square outside the hotel where some of the medina wheely bins are located. You can't see them but you can smell them and hear the lorry coming to collect them, usually before 7am. In addition, there is an air vent on the terrace opening onto a house below owned by an eccentric American lady who keeps dogs. They bark. Enough said. If I were visiting again (which I would love to do) I would pay extra for one of the second floor rooms: the upper terrace is much quieter and has wonderful views. We asked for a reservation at L'Elizir - it is essential to reserve the night before. The young man did not make it and as a result we could not eat there. Also one of the reception staff insisted that we should try Le Chalet De La Plage for dinner. It is, indeed, an institution in Essaouira and has been there since 1965, but it doesn't seem to have changed since 1965 either and it was easily the worst meal of our trip. Apart from that a wholly delightful stay in a lovely town.


Terrace and house needs a fresh coat of paint


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Rates for Madada Mogador