When Abdellatif Aït Ben Abdallah arrived in the medina of Marrakech at the age of seven he did not suspect that he had just weaved the first thread in what was to become a long and enduring love story.

Fascinated, even at this tender age, by the architecture of this ancient town, now a UNESCO WORLD HERITAGE SITE, he was soon to become one of it's most ardent defenders.

At a time when nobody cared about the past or their cultural heritage and walls were simply left to crumble, he began to restore a riad, the first in a long series.

This was the beginning of a painstaking task, governed by a single dominating idea: to share his love of these magnificient historic buildings by opening their doors to visitors and travellers eager for discovery.

Now managed by Marrakech Riads, the company he created in 2000, his riads are all unique but all of them remaining true windows onto the soul of Moroccan culture in all its aspects: architecture, design, food, art , literature and communication.

Marrakech Riads crowning glory is Dar Cherifa, a gem of the Saadi period, now lovingly transformed into a  serene and elegant “café litéraire” and cultural arts centre; regularly hosting exhibitions, concerts, seminars and other cultural events of a national and international flavour.