The most wonderful thing after a long day exploring a bustling city like Fès, a millenial walled city in vibrant Morocco, is to find yourself coming back to a stunning guesthouse, where you know you’ll be able to kick back and indulge in a good meal, a warm and plush bed in a pretty and spacious room, and enjoyable company.
Our time in Fès was short (and eventful!) and we were glad to have found this little gem of a guesthouse called Dar Fès Medina, right in the heart of the medina, Fès’ Old City. The beauty of traveling to Morocco is to be able to splurge in what we feel is the most rewarding aspect of travel: a place of rest and retreat at the end of a busy, crazy day of exploration.
Morocco is a wonderful destination for affordable luxury. You can splurge in quality hotels such as authentic riads (traditional Moroccan houses with an interior courtyard) and dars (a smaller version of a riad); the cost of food and transportation being inexpensive, you won’t feel like you’re breaking the bank yet will get excellent rooms in marvelous accomodations. The riads and dars on offer are plentiful, and in such an iconic imperial city as Fès, we had a hard time deciding where to spend the night.
Prior to our departure, we had settled on Dar Fès Medina, which we had found mentioned in several guidebooks. Our first contact with its owner, Mohammed, and his daughter, Imane, was presaging of things to come: exceptional service, availability, kindness and generosity.
Upon our arrival, we were welcomed by Imane with delicious, sweet mint tea. Wanting us to take our time and not feel rushed to get to our room, she invited us to sit in the absolutely stunning salle à dîner, right at the heart of the house, to indulge in moroccan delicacies of all sorts. To be honest, the magnificent salle à dîner, with its mezzanine going all the way to the roof creating an interior courtyard was what had sold me on the property. I had found it simply stunning in photos, and arriving in such a beautiful space after a long trip was a treat. I was so glad I had picked these accomodations for the lenght of our stay!
Mohammed greeted us and showed us around the house, while discussing family life in Fès and the labyrinthine medina. He was so polite and available, we truly felt we were guests in his own home, friends of the family being welcomed with open arms.
The dar has 10 rooms with en-suites, beautifully decorated in authentic moroccan style. The rooms are little havens of peace, with no noise coming from the streets as the dar is located in a residential area of the medina. Our room was on the second floor, overlooking the salle à dîner. It was very nicely sized and quite cozy, with a tiny bathroom adorned with traditional Moroccan tiling. It was just perfect.
A narrow staircase at the end of the corridor brings you to the rooftop, where you can sip your tea lazily while enjoying the superb view over the moutains.
In the morning, an elaborate moroccan breakfast (included in the room rate of 60 euros for a double room) is served downstairs by the attentive staff. Ask and you shall recieve; they truly are at your disposal to cater to your every needs, which makes you feel like in a grand hotel rather than a small, familial guesthouse. The delicious breakfast of moroccan crepes and freshly-squeezed clementine juice (picked from their beautiful clementine tree right outside the dar’s huge wooden front door) should get your energy up for a day of exploration in the medina.
I strongly recommend this charming dar in the heart of the Fès Medina. Huge thanks to Mohammed and Imane, who made our stay so pleasurable.