Mövenpick Hotel Mansour Eddahbi — Marrakech, Morocco

A hotel room with a bed, a patterned headboard, side tables, a sofa, chairs, a round coffee table, a dressing table, a standing mirror and a patterned rug.
(Image credit: TBC)

The Mövenpick Hotel Mansour Eddahbi in Marrakech was once by-passed by tourists. Its 503 rooms and its location next to the Palais des Congres makes it the largest conference hotel in North Africa, but a $100,000m renovation by French practice Studio MHNA is now drawing leisure-seeking visitors. Saudi businessmen in dazzling white dishdashas and Ghanaian ministers in Kenke prints still have power lunches in the hotels many restaurants but now families and tourists lounge in the spa, the outdoor pools and the lush gardens created by American landscape designer Madison Cox.  

Assigned the tricky task of combining business and leisure, Studio MHNA set out to create showcase of Moroccan savoir-faire a rather than ‘a touristic perception of Morocco’. ‘It’s a dynamic country in terms of art and fashion so the hotel had to be contemporary,’ explains MHNA co-founder Nicolas Adnet. With his partner Mark Hertrich, Adnet has spent more than 20 years designing hotels, many of which are in Morocco.  

Most of the hotel is bespoke, made using local techniques and materials. The black marble is from Kenitra; Adnet sourced bejmat and zellige tiles and techniques such as tadelakt – a traditional chalk wash – appear on walls which are decorated with equestrian artefacts (referring to the past grandeur of the sultans), pottery from Fez and Safi and ancient kaftans. Finding craftspeople was not difficult, says Adnet; the challenge was to ‘combine fantasy and elegance’ in a large, bustling hotel.

A hotel lobby, with a water feature surrounded by cushions with plants along the walls.

(Image credit: TBC)

A hotel sitting area with sofas, round coffee tables, large wall lights and wall mirrors.

(Image credit: TBC)

A hotel sitting area with sofas, chairs, round coffee tables, purple rugs and a water feature in the center under a large chandelier.

(Image credit: TBC)

A hotel sitting area with sofas, chairs and round coffee tables under a large staircase with glass railing

(Image credit: TBC)

A hotel sitting are with a large sofa built into the wall, chairs, a round coffee table and square black and white floor tiles.

(Image credit: TBC)


Avenue Mohamed VI


Emma O'Kelly is a contributing editor at Wallpaper*. She joined the magazine on issue 4 as news editor and since since then has worked in full and part time roles across many editorial departments. She is a freelance journalist based in London and works for a range of titles from Condé Nast Traveller to The Telegraph. She is currently working on a book about Scandinavian sauna culture and is renovating a mid century house in the Italian Lakes.