In the words of Lisa Johnson writing in Conde Nast Traveller “When English couple Mike and Lucie Wood bought Riad Star in the Marrakech Medina, they has no idea that Josephine Baker – vaudeville sensation, civil rights activist and mother of an adopted ‘rainbow tribe’ – liver there in the 1940’s. The performer was a close friend (perhaps lover) of the Pasha of Marrakech we cared for her in his palace after a miscarriage. The royal residence is now the Musee de Marrakech: Baker’s riad, with its Art Deco woodwork and arches, has been restored as a seven room hotel with a hammam, dipping pool and roof terrace. Memorabilia includes a dress-up box stuffed with flapper dresses, Maurice Chevalier style hats and even a banana skirt.”
Travel Guru Andy Mossack broadcast live from Riad Star for his BBC radio Where in the world is Andy?’feature. In his Riad Star review Andy recalled ‘There was a moment during my stay at Riad Star in Marrakech when I thought I had literally died and gone to heaven.’
In the words of Elaine Glusac writing in the New York Times ’’In the teeming pedestrians-only center of the city, Riad Star offers a quiet and cosseting retreat. Its celebrity history provides a fascinating back story, while personal service manages to make the hotel feel like home.”
We were proud to be featured in CNN African voices feature on the architecture and history of the Marrakech Medina, a world heritage site.
In the words of Joanne O’Connor writing in The Observer “This quirky riad was home to Josephine Baker in the 1940s. The seven guest rooms are kitted out in traditional Moroccan style with an Art Deco twist, and the British owners pay homage to Baker with displays of Parisian music-hall memorabilia and a dressing-up box of 1920s clothes. Don’t miss the candlelit massage in the hammam.”
In the words of the London Evening Standard “Riad Star which was a one-time residence of vaudeville star Josephine Baker, brought a dash of glamour to the medina when it opened last month. Located in the historic Kaat Benahid district, there are seven suites including the Charleston, which channels the roaring Twenties and the Paris suite that celebrates the golden age of the Parisian Music Hall. A ‘dressing up box features genuine memorabilia and trinkets for roaring twenties style parties up on the roof terrace with sunset views across to the Atlas mountains.
In the words of Jason Sheftell of the New York Daily News“Certain New York scenes are not dead yet. There are still low-lit corners where the Madagascar ambassador can sit next to a 6-foot-4 transvestite draped in a red-sequined gown while a child star fresh from the Broadway stage can down French fries and chocolate milk near an aging actress sipping Kir Royale and chatting with an English innkeeper from Morocco.” We are eternally grateful for the friendship of the late Jean-Claude Baker, legendary New York restauranteur and champion of all things Josephine.