Kasbah Bab Ourika is a boutique hotel in the Atlas Mountains, 45 min from Marrakech. From its hilltop eyrie it has spectacular unrivalled views of the Ourika Valley.
How would you describe Dar Ahlam in a nutshell?
Dar Ahlam is a traditional, 19th century kasbah with high walls, narrow passageways and secret terraces that unconventionally mixes theatre and boutique lodgings. Set in the Moroccan desert this combination enables each guest to become fully immersed in the local culture and the natural surroundings.
The hotel’s staff creates different themes for each day of a guests’ stay, surprising them by providing different meals in unique locations. Breakfast might be in your own private space in the middle of the garden one morning, involving a specific type of cutlery or specific type of food. The morning after it will completely different, as we never repeat meals or experiences.
How would you describe the atmosphere at the hotel?
The atmosphere at Dar Ahlam is very personal and adaptable to the needs of each individual guest. Whether our guests seek relaxation or would like to be active, everything is possible.
The house is not formal at all, but rather exudes an understated luxury, mixing rich Moroccan influences with French sophistication. Local materials were used in the construction of all quarters, such as adobe, bamboo, or lemon and olive tree wood. Dar Ahlam is elegant yet down to earth. Even when just looking at its architecture and design, the hotel really offers a unique immersion into local culture.
What type of food do you serve and what’s the philosophy behind it?
We want the meals to be as simple as possible, allowing us to focus on the quality of ingredients, which are either from our own garden or sourced locally.
As we try to immerse our guests in a different experience with the food we serve, we like to offer various types of cuisine, such as Moroccan cuisine, Western style cuisine, and so on. The different recipes came together from chefs all over the world, which in itself already offers a lot of originality and diversity in the meals.
Each element of the dish, such as the type of food, its color, and the way it is served, is then included in each day’s particular experience.
What kind of guests is Dar Ahlam perfect for?
Dar Ahlam is a very tranquil place where one can relax and spend quality time with their loved ones. Our hotel is perfect for people who want to unplug from daily life. Here they can be comfortable, sit back and let us do the creative planning such as what they will eat and where they’ll dine.
If we do have families with children visiting, we try to create spaces so that the families will be able to have their privacy just as all the other guests. There is plenty of space for that on the estate.