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A Sofitel heaven in Marseille

Hotel Sofitel Vieux Port in Marseille is nicely located in the center, overlooking the old port. The view from the upper floors is outstanding and gives the visitor an immediate feeling of what this historical city has to offer. This hotel is definitely among the best the samandthedunes-team has ever reviewed.

Our room were tastefully and contemporarily decorated, if a bit smallish, but otherwise it provided all the amenities that one can wish for. The pool downstairs is big enough to keep guests happy and the sun-beds are plentiful. There is also a nice cafe outside the pool area where you can enjoy a gourmet lunch with some excellent wine or champagne. If it gets really hot during the day (which is often the case in the summer) try the sophisticated hotel bar inside, with a wide selection of snacks and drinks. In the evening, book a table at the hotel top floor restaurant Les Trois Forts. It is considered one of the best in the city and here you can enjoy mouthwatering dishes from the sea (the lobster was especially good) while gazing at the old port and the passing by cruise ships – an experience not to miss.

The service at Sofitel Vieux Port is beyond praise, attentive multi-lingual staff ensure that your stay is as pleasant as possible. If you are in Marseille for business, pleasure or just for a couple of days before starting off on a trip to Cote d’Azur, don’t miss this Sofitel experience. It’s a place of tranquility and luxury that will make you smile with appreciation.

A taste of the sea at restaurant Les Trois Forts

 

Sofitel, Rabat: The one and only choice

Sofitel in Rabat is not exactly located downtown, but once you see the hotel and its garden, you will definitely bite your elbows for all the times wasted in other 5 star establishments in Morocco’s capital.

The garden is a true work of gardening art – flamboyant, jazzy and highly luxurious. It enchants and soothes and there are few better pleasures than to sit at the pool restaurant gazing at the surrounding flora while your glass of wine is being refilled (they have some really fantastic local vintages that you can’t find anywhere else.)

The lobby, like most Sofitel lobbies, is vast and multi-functional. It offers you the ultimate in comfort: you can eat, drink, smoke a cigar and entertain yourself with a bit of shopping. If you are into comfy loafers or exquisite suits, Sofitel offers you a Tod’s and a Pal Zileri.

The rooms, as you would expect, are immaculate, the bathroom a pleasure to spend a few extra minutes under the shower and if you are fortunate to have a balcony, relieve some of the day’s tensions watching the sunset.

Sofitel has several restaurants, so take your pick: go crazy on couscous or watch that waistline and dig into one of their delicious salads (the chef truly proves that healthy food does not necessarily have to be boring). After dinner, move to the bar for some raspy live jazz.

Basically, if you are ever in Rabat, for business or pleasure, and want to be pampered, Sofitel should be your one and only choice.

Rating: 5/5

A So Good Christmas!

Michelin star level cuisine, live music in a night club ambiance with champagne by the gallon, roses  on every table and an air of exclusivity. Voilà, welcome to Christmas dinner at So Good restaurant in the Sofitel Hotel in Agadir.

Oyster

The clientele is French (except for the Sam and the dunes team) and the food speaks the same language. The wine is Moroccan. A discreet bass in the background performs Christmas songs while you feast on poached oyster, foie gras on ginger bread with fig chutney (that would fit in comfortably at a State reception) and roasted blue lobster. One small note, though: the menu was perfection, but there was just too much of it (when you have eight dishes coming one after the other, your taste buds tend to start screaming “help!).  Roses

So Good was fully booked for Christmas as most other establishments in Sofitel – a mecca for the glamourous and the haute jeans crowd from Paris, Cannes and Nice this time of the year. Before dinner, a welcome drink was offered in the lobby while an African band was drumming it away.

An enormous Christmas tree reminded us all that the holiday season just started and it was time to kick off the celebrations, which we did with a vengeance. The night flew by like a meteor with guests departing around midnight, or after (depending on one’s stamina and resolve).

The happy, if tired, faces at breakfast the next morning said what needed to be said: This was one So Good Christmas!

An oasis of luxury on the Atlantic

We have stayed in many fabulous hotels all over the world but even as seasoned luxury travellers we were flabbergasted by Sofitel***** in Agadir, Morocco. A true oasis of tranquility (just take a look at the lobby), fantastic service and amenities that make you go wobbly in the legs.

The rooms are decorated with great style, rose petals on the bed and in the bathroom, classy furniture and one comfortable bed makes you want to order room service throughout the day. Don’t be tempted, though, the rest of the hotel is just as fun.

You can be pampered around the pool with waiters tending to your every need, or enjoy a drink in the lobby where chicha smoke and cool people interact.

The restaurants offer some of the best fare in Agadir, from a mouth-watering buffet in the evening with the menu changing every day (don’t miss the Asian theme), to nice snacks and salads by the pool. The service is attentive and friendly.

Pets are just as welcome as any other patron, Sam loved the place.

Now, to be fair, one can find faults here, but let’s be honest, to quote P.J. O’Rourke, that’s like complaining about Sharon Stone’s toenails. The Sofitel is pure luxury perfection, a place we plan to visit again in the future, inshallah. And we highly recommend you do the same.

More reviews from Agadir: Restaurant So Good, La Madrague and Bamboo Thai.

Rating: 4/5

Lobbying in Sofitel

One thing we can say about the Sofitel Hotel in Agadir, it has a lobby that baffles and enchants with its size, sophistication and service provided. It is built in a style that resembles a mix of an old-fashioned French train station and a traditional Moroccan Souk. In the evening a guitar player entertains the guests with some groovy rhythms while clouds of chicha smoke perfume the air with scents of apples and raisins. Palm trees and bonfires add to the ambiance, one of romance and decadence reminiscent of an age long gone.

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