Josephine Baker in Morocco

Ahmed Belbachir Haskouri (1908–1962) was a powerful member of the royal court of Morocco during the protectorate period. He was a prominent figure in Spanish Moroccan history. He was also a great friend of Josephine Baker. Josephine often stopped to visit him in Tetouan, a small coastal town in the North of Morocco when she was travelling between the port of Tangier and her home in Marrakech.

While visiting Tetouan she loved to have a tent  pitched by the seaside, where she would drink tea, be entertained by musicians and have cooks prepare barbecued lamb. Josephine loved the Turkish bath, and Ahmed installed on in his home for her. The local custom of drinking raw eggs after taking a Turkish bath was one which Josephine adopted.

Ahmed was also useful to Josephine in her political life; with his assistance she developed a network by which she secured Spanish Moroccan passports  for Jews fleeing Nazi persecution who were coming to the Spanish zone. The passports were issued stating that Eastern European Jews were Moroccan Jews, thus allowing many to escape to Latin America.

Riad Star in Marrakech was once the home of Josephine Baker, it is now a boutique riad with luxurious accommodation.