Taghazout, Morocco

Photo: Matthias Ripp via flickr

Boho beach escapes. Goa. Bali. Kauai. Tulum. Ibiza. Ambergris Caye. San Juan del Sur. Máncora. They’re where you feel the most relaxed and at home while on vacation. All you need to pack is a bikini, a pair of sandals, a floppy hat, and lots of sunscreen. By the time your vacation is over, you have a deep tan and new friends from all around the world.

Taghazout is your next boho destination. Yes, Morocco. The little fishing village is far from the usual tourist route that includes Marrakesh, Fes, Casablanca, and Essaouira. It’s closer to Agadir than any of those other cities. Taghazout sits on the west coast where the foothills of the High Atlas mountain range meet the Atlantic Ocean. Berber tribes, who produce argan oil, have lived here undisturbed for centuries. Then, in the 1970s, surfers discovered the area’s right-hand breaks. Unlike some of their other favorite swells, they did a pretty good job of keeping this one a secret.

By the 1990s, only one hotel had been built along the golden-sand beach. Little blue fishing boats and slow-moving camels still outnumbered surfers. But a handful of boutique properties have opened in the last few years. Germans and Scandinavians, in search of great waves, followed. Then international hotel chains finally caught on. Big resorts are set to open in the next few years. So now, before Taghazout inevitably changes forever, is the time to visit southwest Morocco.

Photo: Surf Maroc

Amouage is your home base in Taghazout. The boutique hotel is owned by Surf Maroc. The surfing outfitter has been here for 15 years, so they’re the best people to guide both beginner and advanced surfers into Taghazout’s waves. Two years ago, they opened the 20-room hotel. It overlooks Anchor Point’s world-class swells. It has a Berber-meets-industrial-chic vibe. It has plenty of outdoor living space. Plus it’s home to Taghazout’s first bar. It used to be easier to smoke than drink in this dry town.

But back to the laid-back hotel. Polished-concrete floors and brightly patterned rugs run throughout the entire space. There’s a rooftop garden where sunrise and sunset yoga sessions are held. An infinity pool is surrounded by sunbeds, sail umbrellas, hammocks, and shaded couches. Meals from the Amouage Bar & Kitchen are served on the terrace. Moroccan m’smen (flatbread), schneck (pastries), and amlou (similar to peanut butter) are set out in the morning. Pineapple cake and fresh fruit accompany tea in the afternoon. Dinners include beetroot fritters, baba ghanoush, stuffed calamari, and French wine. While an outdoor cinema and an open fire appear at night.

Between surfing and the sun, there’s no doubt that you’ll fall asleep quickly in Taghazout. Amouage ensures you’ll sleep well. You select the Best Room, which is indeed the best room in the house. It’s floor-to-ceiling windows fully open, making the room feel like it extends out to the ocean. The minimal room has a raised bed with uninterrupted views, comfy cushions, and a walk-in rain shower. Plus a strong breeze, which helps create those impressive waves, fills the space with salty air. Taghazout is officially part of your beach rotation now.

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