by Andrew Totter
Born in 1972, Colne, Lancashire, England. Andrew studied interior design at the Queensland College of Art, Griffith University, Australia, then worked for Alessi, Anouska Hemple Design, Yohji Yamamoto and Michiko Koshino all in London, then at Persuade in Bilbao. After moving to Barcelona in 2011, he launched Openhouse…
There is something magnetic about this riad, and this city. Both will conquer your heart and leave you with sweet vivid memories. It’s a mild evening of May and we’re in the heart of Marrakech’s Medina surrounded by flat rooftop terraces. At night, the muezzin reaches us in the quiet top rooms…
by Kim Alderden
Kim is PR and social media manager for Piet Boon Bonaire, a magnificent retreat set within the equally impressive Bonaire Island. She is also Creative Consultant for ATP Event Experts and owner of Simply Canvas, a lovely glamping site in the rolling hills of South-West France.
by Pauline Chardin
I’m a French fashion designer and trend consultant, who, in her constant quest for inspiration, decided to travel almost as much as she can.I almost always travel with my husband, sometimes a little bit against his will, and often without him knowing exactly where we’re going. I generally try to cease any opportunity to take pictures, draw, cook, do the downward dog, make a joke, swim, sew and read an article about pottery. I don’t sing or drive yet, but, who knows, maybe I will in the future
by Paola Corini
Paola loves the sun when it’s not too strong, the smell of herbs, the colour combination of Botswana’s Lilac-breasted Roller, freshly baked bread, mountain air, people who smile, words and summer fruit. Up to one year ago writing and traveling were the extraordinary, yet in 2013 she founded Meraviglia Paper together with Laura and became a self-assured Travel Editor. She keeps thinking that traveling in this world is extraordinary, magical, and essential.
They say you should experience getting lost in Marrakesh’s medina at least once. We got there on what looked like a luggage trolley, we rang at a huge wooden black gloss door and disappeared through the cool and dark rooms of a riad. I got back out almost immediately and started walking through the narrow streets of the medina and its gentle bends at a quick and steady pace. It’s a labyrinth where you feel you know your way and you’d swear you recognise its streets…
Essaouira is immersed in a surreal atmosphere of seagulls crying and flying over the port and fish stalls surrounded by small angry cats. The air smells of sardines and Atlantic wind; you know you are close to the sea. Walking through the narrow streets of the medina, you arrive at 1 Rue d’Agadir. Go through the open door, climb the old staircase with mosaic tile floor and wooden handle and you’ve arrived at the Elizir restaurant…
“El fenn” means “art” and this riad is full of it. It’s a place where time stops. From the red streets of Marrakech you enter the medina and at first your eyes struggle to adjust to the darkness of the rooms you walk through. But then, you’re back to the light, in the shaded garden at the centre of the building. In the square-shaped, deep and tall patio, the vegetation rises up to the blue sky and houses birds that have found here their paradise. There are turtles walking on the marble and coming to greet you by lightly hitting their head against your feet. This space, where you arrive and will keep coming back to, is like an open-air living room where to meet before heading toward other corners of this magical and intimate house…
by Emma Wilson
Emma fell in love with Morocco’s elegant simplicity 15 years ago. She decided to make her home there and built a business stylishly renovating traditional houses for rent to discerning holidaymakers via Castles in the Sand. Her homes have proved particularly popular with musicians and film stars seeking a peaceful haven. Emma enjoys showing guests around the local markets and sourcing artefacts for them. She prides herself on being able to spot the very best quality rugs at the best possible price. Beldi Rugs is the evidence of her extraordinary taste and skill.
On Southern Morocco’s coast, time flows slowly. Dar Emma and Dar Beida are two exclusive houses, hidden behind the white streets of the ancient Essaouira’s medina. The buildings have been developed in height over multiple levels, as they were sturdy sand castles. You can retire in the privacy of your rooms on the lower floors or peek at the horizon over the fortification, from the terraces.
The space is organised as a classic riad: an internal patio with swimming pool in the centre, as it was a carpet and a roof terrace where to enjoy green tea at dawn. What’s special about Riad Due (part of the small chain Uovo) is the attention to details, a blend of local folklore and contemporary design. Each room is different from the others. They feature intense colours that catch by surprise eyes that are used to seeing white and furniture that is beautifully made by local artisans. The rich breakfast brings together African and Occidental traditions. This is a perfect oasis in a discreet corner of the Medina.