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Posted by Danielle Harvey on 29 April 2020
If, like me and my husband, you want to spend your holiday ticking off activities but your partner wants to lounge by the pool, then Mazagan Beach and Golf Resort in Morocco might just be your ideal honeymoon destination. Year-round sun: tick. Action-packed activities: tick. Fun with the kids: tick. Luxury: tick – there's not much this place doesn't offer. And it's not by accident. Everything is meticulously planned and designed to cater to your every need within its 250 hectares of paradise.
A snappy three-hour flight, plus a one-hour transfer from Casablanca Airport, and you'll find yourself winding down Mazagan's grand driveway and seeing the resort emerging from its lush grounds in all of its decadent Moorish glory. As the only destination of its kind in Morocco, you might just find yourself rubbing shoulders with royalty and celebrities – I'm basically BFFs with Dougie from McFly now. You can expect to find traditional Moroccan influences alongside contemporary luxe – think ornately carved doors, colourful lanterns, textured rugs and mosaic tiles. There are 13 restaurants and bars, a huge spa, the most glamorous gym imaginable, an 18-hole golf course and North Africa's biggest casino.
It's always a little disorienting arriving somewhere after dark, and the stylish but seemingly endless corridors of Mazagan heightened the confusion. I didn't need to worry; within a couple of minutes, a friendly chap with a walkie-talkie (who had clearly been sent to find the lost Englishwoman with too much luggage) was guiding me to my room. This was the level of service I came to expect here. Once inside, I was met with the most enormous marshmallowy bed, a spacious bathroom and floor-to-ceiling windows – in the morning, these revealed incredible views across gardens and the secluded 9km beach beyond. I was told that if you're awake early enough (I wasn't), you can watch the resort's herd of rescue horses take their morning gallop across the deserted sands. Beautiful (I imagine). Within the walls of Mazagan, you feel untouched by the outside world. The feeling of serenity is in every corner of the resort, which is especially incredible considering there are 500 rooms here. Sometimes I could walk around for 10 minutes and not bump into another soul.
This place goes all out when it comes to experiences and activities. I'll confess that I'm a total wuss, so looking at my itinerary and seeing quad-biking, zip-lining and horse-riding did send me into a mild panic. However, I'm pleased to report I stepped out of my comfort zone – and I'm so glad I did! First up, I was introduced to the sassy Caramel, my noble steed for the hour. We rode up along the practically deserted beach in the sunshine with the sound of the waves lapping on to the shore – what an incredible moment and an absolute must-do for honeymooners.Next up, we jumped on some quad bikes and whizzed along the beach in hot pursuit of our guide, who took us to see an incredible shipwreck protruding from the water. He was also our personal photographer, getting snaps that made my group look like the most badass girl band of all time! After this, I had caught the action bug, and flinging myself down a zip line at high speed through the trees was the next logical step.Bringing things back to my normal pace, we wandered through the idyllic grounds to the spa, where, in a moment of madness, I decided against the planned full-body massage and instead opted for the hammam. The authentic Moroccan bathing ritual was certainly an experience! First off, you sit in an incredibly hot steam room where a lady washes you down with eucalyptus oil. Next, she showers you and lays you on a huge marble plinth and scrubs your skin with a mitt, which is akin to sandpaper. Then you're showered again, smothered in a mud mask, wrapped in a towel and left to bake on the plinth. The end result: seriously smooth skin! I felt like a newborn baby, and I've been recommending a – frankly bizarre – hammam to anyone who'll listen.
Foodies will love the choice of 13 restaurants and bars here. There are two huge buffets offering everything you could possibly want alongside high-end eateries that specialise in different cuisines. For breakfast, it's worth heading to Olives and sitting by the pool, where fresh food, soft music and elaborately served mint tea all add to the chilled-out vibe. One evening, we opted for the elegant Sel de Mer, which serves the finest seafood. Fellow veggies, don't despair! They whipped me up a yummy quinoa stack and vegetable pasta. I'd also recommend the rustic charm of La Cave for warming French fare.
The final evening was spent looking out at the setting sun, cocktail in hand, watching the golden rays twinkle across the waves. It was a perfectly romantic time to reflect on a trip that offered everything honeymooners could want: adventure, luxury and unadulterated romance in equal measure.
For more information, and to book your stay, visit www.mazaganbeachresort.com