Riad Chichi

A guide to Morrocan tourism

Discover the Timeless Beauty of Traditional Moroccan Architecture in Riad

The intricate and timeless beauty of traditional Moroccan architecture can be discovered in the charming riads present in the heart of old Moroccan towns. These fascinating structures feature a mix of Moorish and Andalusian styles and are often composed of an interior courtyard or garden, which is accessible through a series of intricately designed passageways.

In Morocco, riads were originally built as grand homes of the wealthy and elite. However, over time, many of these properties were abandoned or left in disrepair. Thankfully, in recent times, there has been a renewed appreciation for the beauty of traditional Moroccan architecture, and many people are now restoring them to their former glory.

The most striking aspect of traditional Moroccan architecture is the use of geometric patterns and intricate designs. This is seen not only on the exterior of riads but also on the interior walls, floors, and ceilings. It is said that the decorative zellige tiles, which are small, colored terracotta tiles that feature complex geometric designs, were first used in Morocco in the 10th century, and they continue to be prominent in traditional Moroccan buildings today.

One of the most iconic features of a riad is the central interior courtyard, which is typically planted with trees, flowers and sometimes fountains. These courtyards are perfect for relaxing and enjoying some fresh air in the midst of a bustling city. The rooms within riads also tend to be expansive, with high ceilings and spacious sitting areas, making them ideal for social gatherings, and even business meetings.

Moroccan architecture is also known for its use of colorful textiles, pottery, and other decorative items. These objects can range from brightly colored carpets to vibrant throw pillows, providing a fun and unique touch to the interior of a riad. In addition, unique handcrafted ceilings are another common feature in Moroccan architecture. The ceilings in the traditional Moroccan houses are a grand affair that feature elaborate, carved plasterwork that is carefully painted and adorned with gold leaf, which makes for an impressive sight.

Over the years, riads have become very popular with tourists and are now available to visitors as boutique hotels. Staying in a riad can be a unique and authentic Moroccan experience, immersing visitors in the culture and heritage of this beautiful country. Many riads also offer a variety of traditional Moroccan experiences such as cooking classes, hammams, and massages, that are sure to provide a memorable and refreshing experience.

In conclusion, the traditional Moroccan architecture found in riads is a blend of cultural influences that merges both Andalusian and Moorish styles, with the local Berber architecture, providing an architectural legacy that is unique to the country. With its intricate designs, central courtyards, and vibrant textiles and pottery, visitors to these historical and timeless buildings will undoubtedly fall in love with the beauty of this exquisite style of architecture.