Marrakech, from what I’ve seen in the first few hours of my arrival, is everything people have told me.
I arrived after an all night train ride from Tangier to Marrakech train station and found the train station unique in its architecture, with touches of exotic Moroccan art in the decor.
After a taxi ride to the hotel, I moved into my room and then took a walk around the business section of the city, which is nearby.
Now I want to describe the hotel lobby where I am using wifi. A long seating area, somewhat like a couch, sits along the entire three walls. The seating is maroon with beige tile-like trim, and the ‘skirt’ under that, in the same colors, is a large design that exemplifies Moroccan art. Cushions in the same motive line the back of the seating area. Those designs in the cushions are large circular and the cushion is fringe-lined. There are four coffee tables made of wood with a stone top. It could be marble, however, the color is maroon and beige, as well. Then there are several little stools here and there for extra seating. The walls, the ceiling and the archway into the lobby area is covered with designs made of small tiles. The windows have draped maroon swags with see-through beige curtains.
There are huge copper and brass pots sitting in the area, and the counter top is a grey marble.
The lighting is dim, with use of small chandeliers.
I remember in fashion design, that the rule to combine items together is to find the unifying element.
In the sitting area maroon and beige is the unifying element, but the tile treatment is of all different colors, with the unifying element being design.
I wasn’t disappointed with my room, as it has the same exotic Moroccan ambience. I have a balcony off of the room overlooking the street below.
The train ride was right out of a movie. I got a first class ticket, that didn’t take me long to wonder what the second class would be like. The bed in the cabin was comfortable enough and the sheets and pillow case was clean, but the bathrooms…oh, well, why go into that.
My cabin mates were two nice young men. One, a Frenchman who’s job it is organize tourists on a helicopter trip to the desert where they sleep in a tent and hike around, then eat a gourmet meal at a formal dinner table. He showed me the website and it looked like fun.
The other mate was a Japanese man who is on a European tour from Japan, to study other universities. He would go next to Amsterdam and then on to Germany.
Neither one of them spoke much English. We had some good laughs trying to explain ourselves using sign language and pantomime.
I wrote on my computer, that surprised me with wifi working for a few minutes, that I have three sons and three grandsons, and “me with you two in this cabin reminds me of them.”
I then had that translated into French and Japanese. That made everyone comfortable and we got along great.
The train took us through an arid land and wide open spaces with few houses with flat roofs. I saw a sheepherder with his sheep, several donkeys and horses on carts.
In the city, so far, I’ve seen horses and carts, but no camels yet. According to the Frenchman who makes his home here, said it’s not unusual to see one-hump camels, horses, ostriches and monkeys.
He wrote down several places he said I should see.
So there is a lot to explore, and beginning tomorrow, I’ll sign up for some tours.
Oh, by the way, the second language here is French.