Review: Sofitel Essaouira Golf & Spa , Morocco (Photo Heavy)

The follow up to my initial post, sharing my visit to Morocco, courtesy of Sofitel has been a long time coming (the understatement of 2013 so far), and the current chilly weather has certainly reminded me where I'd rather be at the moment! You can read my original post for a quick recap of the trip so far.

So after being suitably impressed by the luxury of the Sofitel hotel in Marrakesh, I didn't think I could be wowed any further, but how wrong was I? As we began our two hour journey to Essaouira, I was taken in by the sights - I even spotted a windstorm in the desert. It was so surreal. Just a few hours earlier I'd landed back in London from a girly holiday in Turkey, so to say at this point, I was exhausted was an understatement.

The hotel entrance

The Sofitel Essaouira Golf & Spa resort recently opened and it soon become apparent why Sofitel were so keen to show it off. We were warmly greeted upon arrival, served a traditional herbal tea and taken to our rooms which were to be our haven for the next two nights.

Hotel reception

The view of one of the pools from reception - beautiful

My room was spectacular. Spacious, airy, with all the mod cons you'd expect, including a great sound system by Bose, iPod dock, a mounted widescreen TV and a huge balcony, from which I could spy the Atlantic ocean in the far distance! My open plan bathroom was stocked with both Hermes and L'Occitane toiletries and I had the indulgence of enjoying both a deep marble bath and a large walk in shower.

Oh and don't get me started on my bed, which was officially the comfiest bed I've had the pleasure of sleeping in, in my life. The decor wasn't all to my personal taste, but it suited the resort perfectly and gave a huge nod to the rich Moroccan culture.

Spacious balcony, perfect for relaxing on during sunny days and warm nights.

To my right, I had a view of the sprawling golf course.

The grounds also boasts 26 private villas which are available to book, two of which have been exclusively deisgned by Lacoste. You can check out one of them below.

You'll never go hungry at the Sofitel Essaouira Golf & Spa as it's home to four restaurants and two bars, all manned by some of the best staff I've ever come across. They go above and beyond to make you feel welcome and at ease and are a true credit to the Sofitel brand.

Seating area overlooking one of the pools at sunset.

I couldn't wait to see what the hotel spa had to offer and I got the chance to check it out when I was treated to a traditional hammam treatment. The spa stocks products from Clarins and Cing Mondes, as well as their own line of products and offer a wide range of treatments. It's decor is tranquil, yet decadent and is the perfect addition to the hotel's other facilities.

Seating area in reception

The winding staircase which leads from reception to the treatment rooms and pools

Now my first experience of a Hammam bath was quite a surprise . For a start, I was completely starkers! Yes, I unexpectedly ended up in my birthday suit and didn't quite know what to do with myself. I had a complete "Oh. Em. Gee!" moment. Luckily it was just me in there, but I couldn't relax properly as I had one eye on the door at all times ready to cover my modesty if needed! It was dark, hot, wet and steamy - not so hot that I thought I was in danger of passing out though. I stayed in there for approximately 10 minutes, before throwing my robe back on and wandering into the next room for my treatment.

My therapist, ever the professional didn't bat an eyelid (thank God I was freshly waxed!) as she motioned for me to climb up onto a large slate tiled bench and lie down. She expertly lathered my body from head to toe (no paper knickers 'ere mate!) with olive rich black soap. I was then exfoliated within an inch of my life - at times I had to grimace a little as she buffed me from top to bottom using a bamboo mitt. She then rinsed off the soapy lather with warm water using a large wooden bowl.

No here's where my treatment went a little awry. I was then expecting to then be drenched in aromatic oils to deeply moisturise and soften my skin but it didn't happen. My skin at this point was completely parched and screaming for moisture but I had to make do with dashing back to my room and slapping a rich moisturiser all over. A disappointing end to what had started off as a unique treatment. I can only imagine it was a mistake on the part of the therapist. All in all, the treatment took 30 minutes.

As well as an equisite spa,  the hotel also boasts a state of the art gym, with all the latest gym equipment, which is located in the same building. Oh and then there's the sprawling golf course, which we were let loose on, on our final morning. I'm not a golf fan, so won't pretend to know anything about the sport but we played  a round with a group of youngsters, who were linked to a local children's charity which was quite an experience!

On our last day we also went on a walking tour of Essaouira, accompanied by a fantastic tour guide. Along with sharing his knowledge of the heritage of the area, we also learnt that its fishing port was the inspiration behind Alfred Hitchcock's infamous movie, The Birds. That I can believe as a seagull dutifully left its mark (literally) all over me. Yes, a seagull made the decision to desposit its excrement all over me!!! Despite bordering on a near breakdown, I managed to bring myself back from the brink of hysteria enough to enjoy exploring  the local stalls and shops which sold a plethora of fabrics, jewellery (silver in particular was in abundance), spices, clothing and scents. Bartering in true traditional Moroccan style, is to be expected and you can pick up some real bargains if you stick to your guns.

I only wish I was able to stay longer. The resort is perfect for relaxing and getting away from it all. I stayed during high season (June) and at the time the price of my room was £248.90 per night or £254.09 including breakfast, which I'd highly recommend. Needless to say I had an amazing trip and my first experience of Morocco is one I won't forget.

Visit the official hotel website here.

5 beauty lovers have sumthin to say:

Shortiee31 said...

Thoroughly enjoyed reading this... Sounds like absolute bliss! *Sigh*

Yinka said...

@Shortiee31 - It really was. It was amazing.

Sheenie said...

A naked hammam?! Thanks for the warning! I love all the relaxing beds and sunloungers, and the spices piled up like pyramids.

Henessy said...

Wow this looks beautiful. I want to book a holiday to Morocco straight away.

sharon p said...

This is so beautiful,love evrything about this post pics,detail&,all if I live england miserable weather to such a beautiful place I swear I wouldn't come back haha find me a job&relocate *sigh*!


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