Marrakech is one of the places in Morocco with many faces and stories to tell. The medina is where the real life of ordinary people happens. It is colourful, noisy and often dusty. In stark contrast are places like the El Bahia Palace.
El Bahia Palace Architecture & Design
Designed to represent an essential mix of Moroccan and Islamic architectural styles, today the building looks beautiful and melancholic. Not surprisingly, its name means “brilliance”. It is brilliant in its simplicity. The colours inspired by nature are combined perfectly in the frescoes, the dark wood of the immense doors and the white-blue trimming.
The cut like lace arches of doors and corridors give the place a very aesthetic appearance. Beautiful Moroccan mosaics in various shades, arranged by skilful hand on the floors and walls of the palace define different areas of habitation.
Patio with a beautiful fountain in the middle predisposes visitors to breathe deeply the fresh air as the air indoors is filled with the smell of old wood.
The garden surrounding the palace is filled with orange trees and other typical for this climate vegetation. All this greenery loads the place with freshness and tranquillity.
Even the ubiquitous cats rest in the shade and do care about the unobtrusive presence of tourists. The beauty and the tranquillity that dominate this place enchants its visitors. They walk in silence, slowly appreciating what they see and feel within the walls of the palace.
Unfortunately, visitors can see only one part of the palace. On its construction worked the best masters for 14 years. This part open to visitors is the part where the female secrets and struggle for influence were representing the everyday life – the harem of the grand vizier of the Sultan.
Single disappointment remains after visiting the place. The palace is empty. No furniture, no other signs of the presence of previous occupants. An empty, beautiful, melancholic building in the heart of Imperial Marrakesh.
Nevertheless, the beautiful architectural details will surely enchant you. Maybe you will feel differently, maybe you will see another face of this palace – cheerful, full of life. Then I will be happy if you share your experience with me.
Because this is the beauty of travel – we see places and people through our own perceptions that are as similar as they are different.
El Bahia Palace – practical information:
Address: Rue Riad Zitoun el-Jedid, Marrakesh, Morocco
Entrance fee: 10 dirhams (around 1 EUR)
Opening hours: 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
There are many ways to make your trip to Marrakech unique and memorable. But El Bahia Palace is one of those places that leave you with the aesthetic delight that you have seen something very special.
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