Monday, August 13, 2012

Relais du silence

There is no better way to describe the silence of this hotel. The difference with the outside world is absolutely noticeable. The only noise we hear in this place, is the chirping of the finches. As soon as you close the main door behind you though, your ears have to adapt to the immense noise and chaos of the Marrakech streets. Dozens of motorcycles, horse carriages, pedestrians and taxi's crossing the same roads. It is a shocking experience and the decadence of the hotel versus the real street life, brings you down to Earth..

We had our breakfast on the sun roof. Breakfast in La Sultana is breakfast à la carte. A wide range of wonderful dishes to choose from. Where hubby chose to have French toast, scrambled eggs, Danish rolls, I opted for the more Moroccan breakfast of berber bread, harcha bread rolls, tahini toast, pistachio yogurt and Moroccan pancakes with freshly squeezed carrot/orange juice. What a delight to sit outside and enjoy a tasty breakfast with far more carbohydrates than my body can handle...

Discussing the plans of today, we realized there were no obligations. We were free to pick what we wanted to do. The plan was to go visit the beautiful gardens, so we took a glance at our map and decided it was no big deal to walk all the way up to the garden - which we obviously didn't find. The first catch of the day, were new sunglasses for me, since I broke my American pair. For the price of 30 MAD (about 3 euros), I was a happy girl and my eyes got rest from the burning heat that blurred my vision. In the end, we stranded in the Medina Djemaa El Fna again. Looking pretty familiar, but then again, there are so many narrow streets, that we got lost. Not that it mattered, because there is so much to see. There was the fish monger - we could smell his merchandise a couple of streets before we found him. He kept pouring fresh water over his fish, that was displayed in his warm counter. He kept a close eye on my camera, so I would not photograph him nor his shop, so I didn't even give it a try. His friend the butcher was a bit more lazy, so the snapshot was taken before he could take a breath. The meat didn't look appealing at all, especially because the guts were hanging out of the carcass.. The flies didn't mind that smelly scenery, but it made my stomach twirl. This strengthens my idea of eating no meat in Marrakech.

Going in a local tea house, once again we were surprised by the size of this former Minister's House. It was huge and so silent! We were served chicken kebabs on rice and Couscous aux 7 légumes, which we truly enjoyed. It filled our stomachs, before we headed back to the hotel to take a nap.
The pool was fairly cold, compared to the temperatures we have experienced here. Moving up a couple of stair to the sunroof, there was a smaller basin to drench our bodies in. It was like we had rented the place all for ourselves. Nobody else thought it was a good idea to spend some time on the lounge beds, reading a book and sipping our Mojito and non-alcoholic Sahara cocktail (almond milk, ground almonds, raisins and dates mixed to a delicious creamy shake). Do you think we'll get a nice tan after all?

We took a short walk outside, before we climbed up to the sunroof for dinner (okay, we took the elevator - don't overdo it). It was dark by then - the staff eats between 7:00 PM and 8:00 PM for it's Ramadan, remember? - so they lit candles and we were given small flash lights to read the menu. The international cooks make this place a bit more expensive, but the food was definitely worth the cost. Hubby has his slow-cooked beef shank with baked potatoes (no greens??) while I enjoyed the scallops and king prawns with crushed potatoes and grilled veggies. No, we should not have drunk wine or asked for dessert, but the willpower lost to our greediness. My sweet pastilla filled with light cream and toasted slivers of almond satisfied my taste buds. Hubby endeavored his dish of sweets with a shot of espresso. Time to pay the bill and go back to our little palace to settle for the night..

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