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Heure Bleue

Essaouira & the Coast

Rating: Deluxe    

Heure Bleue overview

Heure Bleue is a luxury hotel in the coastal resort of Essaouira, whose high levels of comfort and service have earned it membership of the select Relais & Chateaux hotel association. Interiors display a charming blend of African, Arabic and European influences. It is built around a courtyard, in the traditional of a Moroccan riad, and with its many sitting areas you can always find somewhere to rest and relax. 
There are several categories of rooms and suites, varying in size and decor. All are air conditioned and en-suite, and mod cons such as flatscreen TV and Wi-Fi, and personal touches like bathrobes and slippers, luxury toiletries and room service help you feel at home. There are spacious family suites with 2 bedrooms, bathrooms and a living room.
A buffet breakfast is served each morning, with home-made bread, cakes, jams and yoghurts, plus fruit, cereals, eggs and locally smoked salmon. For other meals you can sample tapas, feast on Moroccan cuisine or enjoy fresh seafood on the terrace. There are cosy lounges and a delightful pool on the roof terrace, and a hammam to leave you feeling cleansed and revived.
You'll be well placed for strolling around the souks of Essaouira, visiting are galleries, and walking along the beach. More energetic options include surfing and windsurfing.  


Open:  Heure Bleue is open all year.

Location: Heure Bleue, which opened as hotel in 2004, is a 19th riad built on the site of an old fondouk, providing accommodation for passing traders. It is in the old city near Bab Marrakech gate. The hotel is about a 15 minute drive from Essaouira airport, and a 2-3 hour drive from Marrakech.

Rooms:  There are 33 rooms and suites arranged over 4 floors around a central courtyard. Classic rooms are decorated with African artworks, deluxe rooms are slightly larger, and suites have additional seating space. All come with Wi-Fi, TV, DVD player, en-suite bathroom with free toiletries, bathrobes and slippers, safe, room service, air conditioning and heating. Deluxe rooms and suites also have minibars. Family suites have 2 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms and a large living room.   

Activities:  You can explore the old city of Essaouira, with its lively souks and narrow alleyways, stroll along the beach, try your hand at surfing, windsurfing and kitesurfing, or play a round of golf at Golf Mogador, a course designed by Gary Player. Horse riding, mountain biking, hiking and 4x4 excursions can all be arranged. Gastronomes will enjoy cookery classes with the hotel’s chef, picking up tips on Moroccan cuisine.

Facilities:  There is an atmospheric indoor restaurant, ‘Salon Oriental’, serving Moroccan meals, and an al fresco terrace restaurant where you can enjoy grilled dishes. Kemia and Oriental tapas are available in the Salon Anglais in the evenings. Meals can be accompanied by local wines made for the hotel, ‘Heure Bleue Val d’Argan’. Wellbeing facilities include a traditional hammam and treatment rooms for massages and waxing, wraps and facials. The roof terrace includes a small heated swimming pool, sunbathing deck and bar. Indoor recreation facilities include a billiard room and a home cinema. The latter is open most evenings and can screen films and sporting events.       

Dining:  Meals are eaten at individual tables in the restaurants.

Children:  Children of all ages are welcome. Suites can take an extra bed, and baby cots can be arranged for an extra fee.

Communication:  There is Wi-Fi internet access throughout the hotel. 

Paul Cook
Guy Marks
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