Dar Manara: Asilah Morocco riad in the medina

by Sep 19, 2019Morocco

Our hotel review of Dar Manara, a cozy riad, located in the heart of the medina in Asilah, Morocco. Asilah is small, artsy town with a restful medina where you won’t get lost.

Not far from Tangier, Asilah Morocco is a small, artsy town that offers a restful medina where you won’t get lost. Staying in a riad in the medina on a visit to Asilah means convenience: Riad Dar Manara is a cozy choice that is walkable to everywhere.

Asilah Dar Manara Lobby Stairs

With a location just off the photogenic Bab al Homar medina gate, it only has five rooms, two doubles and three with twins (that can be pushed together if you ask). Only open since 2014 the building was completely renovated by the Spanish owner Ana and her Moroccan project manager Said.

Asilah Dar Manara Room View From Door

Since the owner is Spanish, you will find a lot of Spanish travelers there; staff also speaks English and Said offers the Moroccan touch.

Asilah Dar Manara Bathroom

Like many riads, it has a rooftop terrace with cozy places to sit, relax, read or dream. Rooms are small, but offer the basic needed amenities, including air conditioning, hair dryers and soaps.

Asilah Dar Manara Rooftop Terrace

Breakfast is an expansive Moroccan treat so take time to indulge each morning. It is served in the lovely sitting room downstairs where a fireplace will offer warmth on a cool night. Spread before you is a delightful assortment of Moroccan breads (the yummy crepe-like Msemen is made in-house), jams, cheese, olives, fruit, fresh squeezed orange juice, coffee or tea and, if you ask, an egg. With that kind of treat, you will be well fortified or a day exploring the white and blue medina walls, taking in the sunset overlooking the Atlantic beach, and the street art Asilah is known for.

Asilah Dar Manara Breakfast Room

Many restaurants and cafes will be outside the medina, but since Asilah is so small, getting to them is not a problem on foot. Getting back into the medina after a meal, a stroll along the harbor or watching locals snap up the fresh catch each evening will end your day in Asilah pleasantly.

HITT Tip: One of the double rooms is on the ground floor facing the street right off the front door. Guest feedback indicates this small room could be loud, particularly on weekends, so if you have a choice, best to avoid that one.


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We recommend planning your trip to Morocco with a reputable, local tour operator who will plan your lodging and riads precisely to suit your needs and will also ensure a place respects its staff, has ethical business practices, can get the best rates and rooms, and is safe as well as culturally authentic and charming. We have traveled to Morocco with Open Doors Morocco, owned and managed by U.S. citizen Nancy Lauer who splits her time between the United States and Morocco in running the company with her Moroccan business partners. We found the wealth of knowledge the team offered and its insights into the country, its culture and every hotel or riad to be indispensable.

Disclosure: We received a complimentary dinner in Asilah, arranged and paid for by Dar Manara in exchange for a story. The review, opinions and ratings here are however our own, and are not approved, provided, or otherwise endorsed or influenced by the hotel.

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Rating the Dar Manara in Asilah, Morocco


Our Rating Our hotel ratings will tell you what we think of an individual property and are not a comparison to other hotels in the area. They are valid at the time of our visit. Things can change, of course, but we hope not with properties we love! We frequently pay for our hotel stays and will disclose whenever we receive discounts or comped room nights as a part of a hotel stay. Our ratings are a percent, with 100% being perfect and 0% some place not even a rat would stay. We rate cleanliness and upkeep (e.g. dust on the windows, dirt under the beds, unclean bathroom fixtures, need of repairs or maintenance, etc.), comfort (e.g. taking into account quiet, how comfy the bed is, if there is a nice robe, a comfy chair, etc.), amenities (e.g. free parking, breakfast included, free Wi-Fi, free bikes, fitness gear, workout room, pool, etc. -- and are not fans of hotels who say they include things, but then charge a facilities fee!), location (e.g. how easy is it to get around by foot, bike, and car), and value (e.g. how much we feel we got in return for the amount charged).

Cleanliness | Upkeep