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Azalai Desert Lodge


Zagora, Morocco

Lying within the magnificent Draa Valley in the heart of a palm oasis, Azalai Desert Lodge is a sublime new boutique hotel that has been beautifully designed by an artist-architect to blend in with the landscape as well as to blend elements of East and West. The guest house is furnished in a harmonious play of contemporary elements and vintage style that evokes the epic adventure era of the early 20th century. Rooms are tastefully themed around a slate of authors—think of Antoine de Saint-Exupery, Karen Blixen, Lawrence of Arabia—who first captured dreams of desert sands and African exploration in their writings. Stately beds are bedecked in heavy rich linens, while in the en suite baths, white porcelain clawfoot tubs invite a relaxing soak. Guests may also cool off in the swimming pool set among the gardens after a game of croquet, or settle in with a book from the library on a shaded chaise. A spa tucked within the date palms offers a traditional hammam and massage. Meals at Azalai Desert Lodge are an event in themselves, as fine Moroccan specialties are prepared with the freshest local ingredients and served on china and silver service in an outdoor setting overlooking the pool and gardens.