Located up in one of the hills surrounding Fez, Les Merinides hotel gives a magnificent view to the city. It is a five star hotel in one of the best locations, for sure. This large hotel is beautifully decorated by traditional Moroccan interior guideline. The outdoor terrace has a Moroccan cuisine restaurant and café called La Terrasse de Fès, which is open for all, even those who don't stay a night in the hotel. During my first visit there, we enjoyed a cup of coffee with a beautiful view to the old Medina of Fez.
The best time to go there are the evenings since there is a live band that plays traditional Andalou music every evening, which is worth coming for. The lights of the city,traditional Moroccan lanterns, and the music are so in sync that it is magical. I've always had a thing for those tile patterns and this was great place to see some very pretty ones. The hotel building itself is nothing special, but the way they decorated it is dashing.
Fez has many different kinds of hotels from chain hotels such as Ibis to small bohemian B&Bs. The most of the big hotels that offer European style accommodation are located in the area of New Fes along the central boulevard. Therefore the hotels in Medina are often smaller private ones since there is no way to build a hotel there because of its dense structure and historical value. Most of Medina’s hotels are riads which are very 'in' among travellers. For those who didn't know, Riads are Moroccan houses that have an interior garden; most of them quite ornamental. If I needed accommodation in Morocco, I'd definitely go for a riad as it certainly is a unique experience.
By viewing from the left of terrace you’ll see the ruins of the Borj Nord (picture above) fortress from 16th Century. Nowadays it works as a weapon museum. Those who are interested in warcraft might enjoy the display of historic weapons from Morocco and abroad, but those who are less interested can browse the lookout of Fez.
Fez can first seem somewhat like a chaotic and restless place for a first-time visitor similar to any other major Moroccan city,so it might be a good idea to see the city from a bird's eye view, in order to understand its actual size and shape. I’m sure that even the locals aren’t able to get their heads around what is where but it might help a traveller to see it anyway.
While gazing peacefully in my own thoughts from the balcony, I couldn't ignore how beautiful the snow topped mountains looked far away behind the city. For a Finnish girl that is used to flat fields and cold-blooded system it felt unreal and unbelievably amazing to see a completely different yet absorbing world.