The most decadent luxury resort in the world: The Selman Marrakech

Located just 15 minutes from the Moroccan city of Marrakech, The Selman is a unique, independent resort, selected by royalty and celebrities for it's Middle Easter charm, as well as it's undeniable splendour. The Executive Explorer takes an intimate look at the 5 star oasis in the desert.
Elizabeth Jenkins-Smalley

Elizabeth Jenkins-Smalley

Editor In Chief at The Executive Magazine

Relax in opulent splendour at the world renowned Selman Marrakech resort, set against the dramatic backdrop of the Atlas Mountains. Frequented by royalty, the ornate, boutique style hotel merges French and Moroccan design styles, culminating in a truly unique and extremely luxurious intimate space. Designed by architect Jacques Garcia, using intricate handmade Arabic mosaics alongside Imperial style grand chandeliers, he creates a fascinating blend of old meets new in this fabulously dark and mysterious retreat.

Spanning an impressive 15 acres of immaculate gardens, the resort is built around owner Abdeslam Bennani Smires’ passion for thoroughbred horses, with impeccable stables open for guests to explore and a twice weekly dressage show accompanies your evening meal at one of the on-site restaurants, Assyl. The equestrian theme is subtly featured throughout the resort, from beautiful photography on the walls, to the intricate carvings and decor, and even the group logo. This equine love gives the resort a real sense of character.

Whilst the more relaxed style of Moroccan customer service may take a little getting used to, the staff are very professional and un-intrusive, leaving guests to explore the resort without feeling any pressure or obligation. The private gated entrance leads up a landscaped driveway to the small courtyard, where guests are greeted at the impressive and stylish lobby. Lavished in antique collections from the Smires family, the decor truly unique, and fabulously rich. The open-air courtyard is a calming and tranquil feature, with monochromatic pillars and a small bath pool, it looks spectacular day and night.


The purpose built resort is privately framed in an unassuming traditional redbrick wall, and features an impressive 80 metre long swimming pool at it’s epicentre, lined with palm trees, surrounded by stunning landscaped gardens and serenely quiet and relaxing outdoor lounging areas. The poolside waiter service is a welcome feature, where every request is catered for with effortless grace.

Just a short walk away is the sumptuous Henri Chenot spa – a real escape from the hustle and bustle of Marrakech. An Oriental-inspired space features a multitude of indoor and outdoor heated pools, high-tech beauty and fitness facilities, along with treatments ranging from facials to full body massages. The spa is a wonderfully serene place, free for all guests to visit, and we highly recommend that you do.

The Selman Kids Club offers a safe, engaging, fun and educational environment for children, leaving parents safe in the knowledge that all of their childcare needs can be taken care of whilst at the resort. The space has been designed to promote learning and development for children of all ages, with a varied activities programme including creative workshops and horse-drawn carriage rides.


If the entrance and lobby isn’t impressive enough, the seemingly infinitely long corridors of the main wing stretch for as far as the eye can see, and the completely symmetrical design gives the illusory sense of a hall of mirrors. Once you reach your room, the luxurious style continues. Each with their own unique qualities, even the 55 standard rooms are impressively large, and lavishly adorned with beautiful decor. Comfort and relaxation is the focus, with huge beds with crisp white linen, as well as a multitude of seating and cushioned cubbies.

For a truly luxurious experience, there are 5 exclusive private villas, each with their own terrace, pool and butler service. The attention to detail is extraordinary, with intricate lattice work and soft velvet furniture, bespoke furniture and an oversized bath taking pride of place in the luxurious bathroom. Enjoy breakfast on the private terrace which overlook the secluded gardens and soak up the morning sunshine.


The Selman features 3 on-site restaurants, each one unique and varying in it’s cuisine, but all carrying the same ethos of high-end cuisine, fresh ingredients and opulent surroundings.

For an alfresco dining experience the casual Le Pavillion restaurant overlooks the pool, and serves up a fresh blend of Mediterranean dishes, locally sourced light bites, and refreshing drinks. The salads and cold sandwiches are especially enticing on a hot day in the Moroccan sun.

For more distinctive local flavours, Assyl is a fine dining restaurant located towards the rear of the resort which serves up an a la carte menu of traditional tagines, meticulously prepared meats, and fresh local vegetables. The Andalusian musicians create a traditional atmosphere, adding to the lavish decor reminiscent of an Ottoman palace. We were particularly impressed with the mechoui lamb shank with vegetable couscous, and the beef tanjia Marrakchia, each meticulously prepared for 8 hours and served piping hot. The succulent meat fell away from the bone, and the accompanying dishes further showcased the diversity of Moroccan gastronomy with bold flavours and rich aromas.

Le Selman restaurant offers a fine dinging yet casual experience with a focus on rich flavours and delicate ingredients. With different culinary experiences throughout the week, the Thai Journey takes place every Thursday and is a must for any Pan-Asian food lover. The atmosphere is peaceful and relaxing, with mesmerising performances from the vocalist who serenades diners with her dulcet tones.

A full room service menu is available, with am impressive selection available 24 hours a day. With room as lavish and relaxing as the Selman’s, this could be the perfect option to take full advantage of the stunning space.

The verdict

We highly recommend anyone looking for a luxurious getaway to visit this opulent, luxurious and tranquil resort. With enough amenities and activities to escape the bustle of Marrakech or relax after navigating the labyrinth of the Medinas, The Selman offers unparalleled escapism. The large splendorous rooms, impeccable decor, fantastic spa facilities and opulent restaurants make for a unique and addictive experience, leaving you wanting to come back time after time.

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