Experience the Power of Traditional Carpets in a Palace Hotel in Marrakech

Atlas Mountains

Moroccan craftsmanship is enormously rich and varied and expresses the extraordinary savoir-faire of Moroccan craftsmen. Traditional Moroccan carpets are one of the best examples of the contribution of Moroccan women to improve this field of traditional crafts, mostly because it is a fertile field where they can show their artistic and creative capacities. In this article I will focus on some famous types of traditional carpets that you can find in Morocco and in the characteristics of each of them.

Middle Atlas Region

High Atlas

The mountainous region of the Middle Atlas reaches heights of up to 3.200 metres high (10,500 feet) in its northernmost part, around the Jebel Bou Iblane, and has the severest climate in Morocco during the winter. Thus, the region’s carpets are up to four centimetres (over 1.5 inches) thick, either a symmetric or a Berber knot pattern.

In the north-eastern part, white-ground carpets are the most common among the tribes of the Beni Ouarain confederation, the Beni Alaham, the Marmoucha and the Ait Seghrouchène. This tradition of white-ground carpets also seems to have existed among the Ait Youssi, Beni Mguild, Zemmour and Guerrouane from the central and western part of the Middle Atlas, but apparently vanished in the early 20th century.

Beginning in the 19th century and developing quickly during the time of the French protectorate, carpets with a dominant red background set up a new style in a West-to-East movement. Therefore, within the Zemmour, Guerrouane, Ait Sgougou and Zayan tribes, red is the dominant colour of 20th century carpets, while the ones made by the Beni Mguild and Beni Mtir tribes tend to have a darker appearance with a significantly high amount of dark blue.

Southern Morocco and High Atlas Region

atlas Morocco

Carpets from the Jebel Siroua region in South Morocco and the Pre-Sahara are generally the finest examples of Moroccan rural weaving. In the past, they were traded under a quite misleading attribution to the “High Atlas”, while carpets from the Azilal province –really originating from the High Atlas– were almost unknown to the market until the late 1990s. As the climatic conditions on the northern end of the Sahara and the central High Atlas are far less severe than in the more northern mountainous regions, carpets from southern Morocco tend to have a finer structure and a more noble appearance, mostly due to their extremely lustrous wool and an almost cloth-like touch.

The tribes of the Ait Ouaouzguite confederation are the key holders of the most sophisticated textile culture in rural Morocco. There is significant evidence for a mutual influence of the weavings from the urban centres of Rabat and Salé and the ones from the Ait Ouaouzguite, at least from the early 19th century, based on the one hand on the closeness of the trans-Saharan trade routes to the region of the Jebel Siroua, and on the other hand on the cultural relations between the Jewish populations among the Ait Ouaouzguite and in the capital of Rabat. The highly skilled textile culture of this region is also expressed in various flat weaves and in a specific type of mixed technique textiles.

Moroccan carpets are thus a brilliant aspect of the unique savoir-faire of Moroccan craftswomen and men, as well as a fantastic sample of Morocco’s luxury and art de vivre. If you want to discover the best of traditional Moroccan carpets, you can stay in an exclusive palace hotel in Marrakech, where the most beautiful and opulent carpets decorate the sumptuous rooms and halls. You can also enjoy a unique opportunity to purchase all sorts of Moroccan carpets in a boutique hotel in Marrakech, a city full of charm, magic and beauty.


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