One of Marrakech’s most fabled addresses, La Mamounia first opened in 1923 and quickly became a hot spot for royalty, movie stars and international celebrities. Over the years, its glamorous allure has not faded; in 2009, the five-star hotel embarked on a three-year renovation project that was said to cost $120 million. Designer Jacques Garcia did up the interiors in theatrical splendor—all surrounded by lush gardens.
Now, La Mamounia has announced another major renovation that will see it close from May 25 to September 1, 2020. (Readers may recall that the Moroccan government was looking to sell a 51 percent stake in the hotel last year.) The hotel has appointed Jouin Manku, the celebrated Parisian design studio, to oversee the refurbishment project, which will completely overhaul the restaurants and give the rooms and public areas a facelift.
Patrick Jouin and Sanjit Manku have longstanding partnerships with Alain Ducasse, for whom they have designed over 15 restaurants and Van Cleef & Arpels. The studio is also behind such buzzy recent projects as Le Paris Brest restaurant by star chef Christian Le Squer in Rennes, the Chateau de Ferrand wine estate in Saint-Emilion and Ducasse’s new restaurant at Raffles Singapore.
At La Mamounia, the idea is to retain the heritage of the legendary hotel while updating it with a contemporary concept. Pierre Jochem, the hotel’s general manager, described the ambition of seeing an updated La Mamounia that’s “both representative of the current day and as a 95-year-old property that has maintained its charm and heritage through the decades.”