Guild Events

Holiday in Marrakech [CANCELLED]
Tuesday 21 September 2010 - Saturday 25 September 2010
Dress: as shown in the event instructions


This spectacular trip is being arranged by The Hon Celia Sandys, granddaughter of Sir Winston Churchill, and Annie Austin, a lady who has been decorated by King Mohammed VI for her work in Morocco.

After an early start from Gatwick, Guild members and their guests will check in to the luxury Hotel Sofitel in Marrakech. After relaxing over a light buffet lunch and settling in at the hotel, the first event will be a wonderful Moroccan dinner and show in the beautiful tents at Chez Ali.

Wednesday will start with a guided tour of the city, including visits to the Majorelle gardens (which were created by the French painter Jacques Majorelle between 1922 and 1962 and were later bought and restored by Yves St Laurent, who lived next door), the amazing 12th century Koutoubia Mosque (beside the city's 10-mile long ramparts) and many of the places painted by Winston Churchill during the happy times he spent in Marrakech. Lunch will be a gourmet experience in the world-famous La Mamounia hotel, with time to enjoy the hotel's beautiful gardens.

In the afternoon guides will lead the way through the fascinating old souks, ending in the enormous Djemaa El Fna square, with its jugglers, acrobats, story-tellers, snake-charmers and others, all performing much as they have done for centuries. To round off a perfect day, dinner will be laid on in a beautiful, private house.

On Thursday the party will set off on an excursion to the Ourika Valley, a stunning gorge that zigzags along the base of the Atlas mountains. On the way we will see many ancient dwellings of the Berbers, including houses built into the mountainside. During the morning we will visit the Nectarome Herb Garden and the saffron fields, before stopping for lunch at the delightfully-named and picture-postcard pretty Restaurant Ramuntcho.

That evening we will dine in the renowned Restaurant Yacout (which is owned by the Honorary British Consul in Marrakech), situated in the heart of the ancient Medina, and with spectacular views over the rooftops of Marrakech from the terrace. A special guest speaker will add sparkle to this delightful occasion.

On Friday we will be guided on another stunning excursion, this time to the region of Ouirgane, home to many small Berber villages in what is perhaps the most breathtaking part of the Atlas Mountains. The hills and valleys are filled with forests, and lime, grapefruit and orange orchards, and many gardens are seas of roses. Lunch will be taken at the Roseraie, so named because of its fabulous gardens. After returning to Marrakech the final events in the programme will include a reception and a gala dinner, again in stunning private homes.

The Saturday morning will be left free for personal arrangements, before an early lunch in the hotel and travel to the airport to catch an afternoon flight back to Gatwick.

Some may wish to extend their stay in Marrakech, either before or after the official programme, or both! We will be happy to liaise with the Hotel Sofitel to arrange extra nights there for you, should you so wish.

Price and booking information only available to members.

Please log in to the Members' area to view prices and details of how to book.