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Kasbah Tamadot

Spring has sprung!...(or Rbaai Ghougharass! in berber)

The High Atlas in springtime is a magical place. Apricot, plum, peach and apple trees are all now in bloom whilst the orange and lemon trees are bursting with fruit. Our vines are growing fast, intertwining with roses to climb over the pathways to the Berber Tents after the cutting back of winter. The sound of frogs in the pond is loud. No other way to put it, we appear to have had a successful frog year and the volume of the croaking at sunset is remarkable. The change of seasons is something I missed in the tropics and I am truly loving the transformation taking place before my eyes at the moment.

After closing in January for a couple of weeks, our efforts are slowly being paid off in a stunning new piece of landscaping which is turning green as I type (grass appears to hibernate in winter here so regular root inspections became a new job for me, I am quite the expert now) . The aim of course is that our new amphitheatre will be covered in lush grass and a wonderful new addition to the hotel where guests can chill out, watch musical performances on the new extended pool terrace, or simply lean back and enjoy the views.

Life at Kasbah is as busy as ever as we prepare for the warmer weather, we can now venture outside for cocktails in the evenings and watch the sunset and (and moon rise over the mountains if we are lucky) from the roof terrace. Breakfast is now back outside on the terrace overlooking the valley, honestly one of the most beautiful places to start the day this side of the Sahara!

Eve Branson has been as active as ever with her foundation visiting twice in recent months her girls at the craft house are working steadily on producing gifts that are sold in the Eve Branson Foundation shop here at Kasbah, and the goats have also been busy we have to date five babies in the last week! The picture is of a little chap just one day old. The Cashmere goats are thriving with beautiful soft coats and a wonderful new area to graze on which Eve bought recently. There also are baby bunnies who moved in with the hens (which are too cute to pass by so I also have a picture) and the hens which are a new addition to the Foundation. Yet to lay an egg, we are waiting patiently so that we at Kasbah may scoop them up and serve them at breakfast.

Part of the Eve Branson Foundation work has been assisting a local association, Tiwizi, that produces honey, couscous and saffron. We are now serving the most delicious local honey and couscous to our guests at Kasbah, and no doubt will be involved in harvesting when the time comes for saffron production. Being part of the Virgin family, we are actively encouraged to help local charities, this is something I am working on over the next few months our staff will assist the local community where we can with our relevant skills, these will be on days that are paid by the hotel but benefit the wider community. An example is Kasbah will be providing the help needed to lay a floor in the craft house at Tiwizi.
We have also been lucky enough to see the arrival of Ariane Jessamine, my new deputy GM who brings with her a wealth of hotel experience from London and who is adjusting well to life in the mountains. The hotel will be nice and busy as we enter our high season, and now with British Airways and BMI both adding three additional flights a week direct from Gatwick and Heathrow to Marrakech, we are now even more convenient to get to.