Kasbah Tamadot, Sir Richard Branson’s Moroccan hotel in the Atlas Mountains, recently celebrated a decade of luxury stays (which made us a bit nostalgic for our 10th anniversary) with a lavish do at Kensington Roof Gardens. Here’s what happened when Smith went along, and 10 reasons why you should rock this particular kasbah…
Kasbah Tamadot’s 10th birthday celebrations confirmed our suspicions that there ain’t no party like one hosted by a knighted billionaire. As the cocktails flowed, the dessert table (see below) was decimated and a magician worked his magic, the night left us hankering for a Moroccan getaway.
• It’s for a good cause Sir Richard discovered Kasbah Tamadot during a round-the-world balloon trip, and his mother begged him to buy it for her. He agreed, but only if she supported the nearby villages. So, stay here to help the brilliant Eve Branson Foundation.
• It’s a bit of an aphrodisiac More than 200 courting couples have become engaged by the time they check out. Tread carefully if you’re not the marrying kind.
• Animal lovers will make a few friends The hotel has four mules (Peppermint, Paprika, Parmesan and Peanut), three donkeys (Peaches, Pudding and Plum), a couple of camels and a smattering of goats and ducks.
• It’s in-tents-ly beautiful A little more lavish than your average yurt, the Kasbah’s Berber-style tents are outfitted with chandeliers and Moroccan antiques, and some have decks with inlaid Jacuzzis and sweeping mountain views.
• An excitable team The Kasbah’s service is resolutely five-star, but there’s also a real sense of camaraderie among the team (we heard many a sweetly gushing speech at the party), and if you ask nicely, they’ll tell you some fantastic stories.
• Destination cooking Yes, every Tom, Dick and Tarquin returns from Morocco having learnt how to use their hand-thrown tagine, but were their lessons held high up on a roof terrace with jaw-slackening views? Point, Sir Richard…
• The joy of treks If your boots are made for walking (because you bought them from Millets specifically for that purpose), you can hotfoot it to Toubkal National Park, the High Atlas, Anfa and to local villages (or there’s mule-trekking, if your boots are solely for aesthetics).
• That spa We are fans of a good hammam, but there’s a special place in our hearts for one so pretty (and the Damask Rose facial is rather dreamy).
• Because you deserve a holiday and really, what better reason is there to book?