Dar Kawa

  • Location: City
    Restaurants: In walking distance
    Jemaa el’Fnaa suqare: In walking distance
    Museum of Photography: In walking distance
    The bustling Medina: In walking distance
  • Marrakech Airport (RAK): 20 mins by taxi
    Airport transfer available on request
    Car recommended
    No parking available

Dar Kawa is owned by renowned designer Valérie Barkowski and it certainly looks the part.

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An introduction to Dar Kawa

How would you describe Dar Kawa in a nutshell?

When you come to Dar Kawa, you feel at home — there are books everywhere, it’s relaxing. It’s not like it was just decorated and things were put in place just for the guests. It’s a lived-in house.

The staff has been with me for 17 years and the cook for 14 years. So it’s like a home away from home.

How did you end up having a riad in Marrakech?

My first trip to Morocco was in 1991 and I thought one day I would live there. Six years later, that became true. I found it completely enchanting, the smells, the colours, the people, the food. It’s so close to Europe but so exotic. And the country has all types of landscapes – you have the Mediterranean sea, the desert, the Atlas mountains and of course Marrakech right in the middle. It’s not a big country so everything is easily accessible.

What was your inspiration to turn the house into a riad/hotel?

I was fascinated by the Moroccan lifestyle and architecture, so different from our standards. When we bought the house in 1996, we restored it to the look it had in the 17th century. We removed what people had changed over the centuries and only added the bathrooms and a few facilities that were not there before. The aim was to make it look like it was back then. We really respected whatever was possible in terms of materials and construction, so it became an authentic, nice house and we decided to rent it. As I am traveling a lot, I wanted to let the house live.

How would you describe the style of the hotel?

I can’t say. It’s too close for me to tell. It’s just my style. I have already redone it three times. I can only say that whatever is there is there because I like it.

Since you started renting out the riad, what has been your biggest reward about the whole experience?

I think it’s when people are happy. The hotel offers something special. It’s simple but authentic, so I’m happy when people enjoy it.

I respect when people understand that my butler and cook are there to please them. They love their jobs and it’s a big reward for me that they have been with us for 17 and 14 years. It means we have done something right and created something together.

Suite Muntaz
Suite Muntaz
Dar Kawa patio
Dar Kawa patio
Dar Kawa patio
Riad sitting area
Junior suite Olmassi
Junior suite Olmassi
Junior suite Omani
Double room Baboune

Dar Kawa rooms & rates

There is one double bedroom, two mini-suites and one big suite. All the rooms have attached bathrooms and all the suites have separate dressing rooms and toilets.

There are two staircases in the building, one on each side, and the Mumtaz suite is really like a small apartment within the riad. You have a big room, a separate toilet, and a big bathroom where massages can be organized. It’s quite comfortable and large and there’s also a fireplace in the room.

The Olmassi junior suite also has a fireplace, and direct access to the patio. In fact, all the rooms have a different character and charm.

  • Double room Baboune for 2 people / 15 m²
    150 / night
    • 1 Double bedroom
    • 1 Shower room (ensuite)

    Located on the first floor of Dar Kawa. Individual bathroom with shower and toilet. Exclusive bed and bath linen designed by V. Barkowski. The bed is from Ministero del Gusto.

  • Junior suite Omani for 2-3 people / 30 m²
    220 / night
    • 1 Double bedroom
    • 1 Shower room (ensuite)
    • 1 Extra bed (on req.)

    This 2 room suite at Dar Kawa, with bedroom and boudoir, has an individual bathroom with shower, dressing room and separate toilet. Exclusive linen designed by V. Barkowski. The double bed can be separated into twins. Possibility of accommodating third guest or child on a separate bed in the boudoir.

  • Junior suite Olmassi for 2-3 people / 27 m²
    220 / night
    • 1 Double bedroom
    • 1 Shower room (ensuite)
    • 1 Extra bed (on req.)

    Located on the ground floor of Dar Kawa. Large room with fireplace, individual bathroom with shower. Separate toilet and dressing room. Exclusive bed and bath linen. This junior suite has a direct access to the patio.

  • Suite Muntaz for 2-3 people / 50 m²
    260 / night
    • 1 Double bedroom
    • 1 Shower room (ensuite)
    • 1 Extra bed (on req.)

    Located on the first floor of Dar Kawa, individual staircase. Private 2 rooms suite with fireplace, individual bathroom with shower, separate toilet and dressing. Bed linen by Bandit Queen. Possibility of accommodating third guest or child (complimentary). The room has a large sitting area and a working space.

  • Entire Riad for 8-10 people / 200 m²
    850 / night
    • 4 Double bedroom
    • 4 Shower room (ensuite)
    • 1 Living room
    • 2 Extra bed (on req.)

    The entire Riad is available for rent on an exclusive basis.

Included in the rates
Rates include breakfast.
Children & Extra beds
Only children from 12+ years are welcome. Extra beds are available at EUR 50 per night.
Minimum stay
2 nights
Check in time
after 12:00
Check out time
before 11:00

Facilities & services

  • WiFi
  • Air conditioning
  • Terrace
  • Maid service
  • Concierge service
  • Fireplace
  • Restaurant
  • Courtyard
  • Not suitable for young children
  • Laundry service
  • Safe box
  • Hair dryer
  • Spa

Breakfast is included in the price of the room. If people want, they can order lunch or dinner as well, or attend one of our cooking classes.

As common areas, we have the patio, a sitting room, and a terrace. We can organize massages and whatever spa-type services are wanted. If people ask for something, we always manage to organize it for them. It’s a service we offer, whether it’s arranging for a shuttle or a car, offering restaurant tips and reservations, or organizing a picnic in the countryside.

We are always there when people need anything, but Dar Kawa is not about being busy all day. It’s more a place for relaxing.

Things to do in Marrakech

  • Art / Culture
  • Massages / Treatments
  • Yoga classes
  • Golf

I think it really depends on the people. Not everybody likes to do the same thing on their holidays. However, if people are in Marrakech for three or four days, one thing that definitely needs to be done is to visit Medersa Ben Youssef, the Coranic school. If they have only time to visit one thing, it's that place. It’s an architectural jewel.

It’s also nice to go for a one-day journey to see the countryside. It’s breathtaking. You can go to the Atlas mountains or the Ourika Valley. You can even have a small desert experience not far from Marrakech.

In winter, when there is snow on the mountains you can even go skiing for one day and see the palm trees as you ski. There’s a donkey that brings you from the ski place to the café.

But whatever people would like to do during their holiday, we are always happy to help, give tips depending on the weather and season, and arrange it.

Dar Kawa reviews

4 of 5 stars
Verfied Welcome Beyond stay
We had a wonderful stay at Dar Kawa.! We had a wonderful stay at Dar Kawa. A nice room, very friendly staff, good food, all together we spent a good time at Dar Kawa!
Jasmin E.
stayed at Dar Kawa in November 2017
5 of 5 stars
Verfied Welcome Beyond stay
They liked it very much!The reservation was for my parents. They did stay in Dar Kawa 3 nights from 19-22.11. and they liked it very much. They would rate it with a 9.
George P.
stayed at Dar Kawa in November 2014
5 of 5 stars
Verfied Welcome Beyond stay
Our stay at Dar Kawa was wonderful! It was a true oasis tacked away in the busy Medina of Marrakech. Mr. Abdelhadi and the housekeeping staff really took good care of us. We loved the accommodation, the service and how it felt it was our vacation home away home. We would definitely recommend Dar Kawa to any friends who are planning to travel to Marrakech. We would also like to thank WelcomeBeyond to have introduced such a great gem to us.
J.Z.
stayed at Dar Kawa in March 2014

The location of Dar Kawa

Dar Kawa is right in the middle of the médina where, originally, merchants came to sell their goods. In this neighborhood you still find the old foundouks, former hotels where the merchants stayed. Now they've often become workshops for artisans but the original architecture is still visible and amazing.

We’re also very close to the Medersa Ben Youssef and the spice market. When we bought the house people thought we were crazy. But now we are lucky because all the better known areas all have less authenticity to them. We have children in the streets here, the hamam, the local ovens, which in many places are not there anymore.

When is the best time to visit Marrakech?

There are several times. Generally the best times to come would be in September or October, March, April and May.

June, July, and August are terrible if you don't like the heat. But if you like it, it's nice. In summer there is an atmosphere where nobody is doing anything, which I love.

Winter is also nice. In most European countries the sky is grey but when you reach Marrakech in the winter, the light, the intensity of the colors, and the heat when you sit in the sun feel like a big balloon of oxygen. Photographers come here in winter to take beautiful shots because of the light.

But you need to remember that the Atlas mountains are close and that the climate there is cold. So, the moment you leave the sun it gets chilly. Some writer said ‘Morocco is like a ball of fire in a land of ice’, which is true in winter.