Riad Spa Sindibad : Hammam in Marrakech
After a 10-day tour of morocco I wanted to experience a Hamman in Morroco and a massage. Every country I visit I like to see what the spa experience is like and I had heard about Hamman’s in Morocco from friends and wanted to visit one.
A riad is a hotel in morocco they tend to be built around a courtyard and are the traditional place to stay in Morocco. A few of the Riads also have hammans or you can go to a specialist hamman for a Spa in Marrakech. They vary in quality and price and there are many options on trip advisor to find the right one for your needs.
What is a hammam?
A hammam is a Turkish bath which is quite popular in the Islamic world. It is a place to have a spa treatment so it is something that is definitely on my radar as I love visiting spas when I am travelling. A hammam is similar to a stream bath experience and is said to have many health benefits.
Why I chose this Hammam in Marrakesh
My friend has done a guest post on my blog before about her experience at a Hammam and I was worried that you had to bear all. I don’t even like seeing my own naked body never mind subjecting someone else to the godly sight.
However, as I always say life is too short and if you don’t try these things for yourself then you obviously will never know what its like and if it is that bad, I can always leave.
I had done a bit of research into Hammams in Marrakesh and there are many options. I would look on trip adviser and find one near where you are staying and look at their reviews.
Originally, I was going to visit a hammam which was next to the Riad I was staying at after my tour of morroco purely because it was next door and because it had excellent reviews.
But then my roommate from the tour also wanted to experience a hammam and so I decided to go with her as sometimes these things are nice to do with friends.
A couple also on the tour was staying at the Riad Sindibad and said that the spa was supposed to be excellent, so we decided to book into that hammam. I didnt get many photos as it was all a bit rushed when we got there as we arrived late.
Stressed getting to the Hammam Spa
We finished off our souvenir shopping in the medina Marrakech and then headed to the Moroccan spa by taxi. This was an experience in itself, we would have been better off walking straight from the medina but because time was short as my friend was due to fly home in a couple of hours we decided to get a taxi.
Marrakesh is known for its taxi scams so do be careful as I think we might have been scammed here.
We showed the taxi driver the address and he said he knew where it was and off we went. We had the address up on a phone sat nav so we could track if he was getting close as our friends had told us that their taxi driver dropped them quite a walk from the Sindibad Riad and we needed to go down a certain road to get close. We told the driver this and he seemed to understand.
However, he obviously didn’t understand or didnt care and kept taking us down very narrow lanes which he then had to reverse back and then he drove completely in the opposite direction and tried to drop us off nowhere near the Riad. We said no you have just gone further away from the Riad and we were now further than the medina was which was pointless us getting a taxi. We showed him on the sat nav where the pin was and that’s where we wanted to go, and he said ahh yes, I know and off we went again.
We were getting apprehensive that we were being scammed as we started going down the same lanes that he got stuck in before.
The taxi driver would not let us get out, we said we will get out now and walk as we could see on the map that the Riad was down the next lane which the car could not get to unless he went right to the end of these current lanes but it seemed the car could not get through due to deliveries and parked vehicles. Plus he had come down the wrong part of the street network in the first place, if he really did know where the riad was he could of joined the correct road in the first place from the medina.
It must be very confusing driving down these lanes in Marrakech but since the driver said he knew where the riad was we thought at least he would be able to get us there.
Anyway, we kept saying we would get out when he stopped but he would then drive off so we could not get out of the car. We finally managed to open the doors and get out we felt bad as we were not going to pay the driver all he had done was drive us round and we ended up nearly back in the spot that we had started off from.
So, we had to practically run to the Riad Sindibad as now we were late for our treatment we were hot bothered and worried that the taxi driver was going to chase us and beat the money out of us.
When we finally got to the riad we explained what had happened and they said this taxi scam was vey common and not to worry they would not let the taxi driver in if he came knocking on the front door. Also, when our treatments were finished, they got a member of staff to walk us to find another taxi in case he was waiting outside which was really nice.
My treatment in the Hammam Spa
We arrive at the Riad stress hot dehydrated and anxious, so I needed a good massage to calm me down.
The staff were friendly, our friends were already at the Riad and had checked into their rooms and came down to meet us.
We were shown upstairs to two changing rooms and had a few lockers with our gown slippers and a paper thong which managed to fit over my big bum.
We were having a double special so we were in the hammam together and then we would have our massage in a different room. We had to get naked I was going to leave my bra on, and she said it was OK to leave on but in the end, I decided to take off as I didn’t want to get it all sweaty.
The special we had included 45 min hammam and 1-hour oil massage for 2 for 590 you could have a clay massage.
We were taken in to the hammam which had two stone slabs with mattresses and what looked like a water fountain and a shower hose.
I was a little nervous.
We removed our robes and swore to each other to keep eyes closed. I didnt peak so I hope she didnt as she would have been scarred for life getting a view of me butt naked.
The hammam is hot it is a bit like a steam room without the steam. I first had warm water poured over me which was quite nice and what felt like a cream rubbed on could have been oil because it was a little greasy.
We only had one lady giving us both the treatment so next she did the same to my friend whilst the cream/oil soak into my skin.
I didn’t like it. I was already dehydrated from getting to the spa and I started to feel sick. I don’t like saunas and steam rooms as they make me feel hot and sick so I asked if I could leave. I knew I wasn’t going to like it but wanted to give it a go.
I put on my robe and left the hammam room where the man from reception came over and asked if everything was OK, I explained I didn’t like it and he said no problem I could go ahead and have my massage.
They gave me a cheaper deal as of course I had not had the hammam which I thought was nice as it was my fault not knowing what to expect. I left during the hammam ritual due to my personal discomfort and it was nothing to do with their treatment and for this reason I would not have queried the price. I ended up paying 400 morrocan dirham which is about £32 which is the sort of price you would pay in the UK for a massage and it was worth the price.
I went upstairs into the massage room and there was already a lady having a massage and later my friend joined me. I noticed there was another room with only one bed so you can have solo massages if requested.
I was given the option of 2 oils, not sure what they were but I chose the one that smelt the nicest. However, I don’t think she used enough oil as at some point her hands felt dry and rough and I prefer to be well oiled when having a massage.
I had a traditional Moroccan massage and I don’t think I have had this type of massage before. They literally massage everywhere so I said no to chest and boobs. She massaged my tummy which I haven’t had done often and to be honest it is not my favourite but loved the feet, face, head and even ears being massaged.
All the staff were very friendly and at first, I thought it was because our friends were staying there but after my massage I was waiting in the lobby and other guests arrived and they were so welcoming to them.
I bet they were a bit annoyed with me thinking bloody tourists arrives late and then says she doesn’t even like it. However they dd not make me feel uncomfortable
They gave me English tea afterwards whilst I waited for my friends to finish their treatment and there were a couple eating a meal in the restaurant area which smelt tasty. The Riad was pretty and I would actually stay here if I was to visit Marrakech again as my friends said the rooms were lovely.
Would I recommend this Hammam in Marrakech
This is a nice place to visit for as I said before there are so any hammams in Marrakech so choose somewhere that is convenient for you I personally wouldn’t travel half way over the city to get to the Riad but if you are nearby then do make a visit.
This Marrakech hamman seemed to be quite geared up for the tourist experience. My friend went to a traditional hamman when she was in Marrakech which is used by locals. You can read more about her experience here.
Read more about my travels in Morroco or my experience at Spas around the world
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