Meeting with a friend and passionate, Nicolas Pawlowski


There are some meetings that mark hearts and minds, and invite us to discover and live an authentic Marrakech. It is precisely these meetings that make the philosophy of Marrakech Insiders and this is why we decided to let you discover the portrait of a passionate, Nicolas Pawlowski, who’s been installed in Marrakech for six years. With his anecdotes, he gives us his vision of the ocher city and tells us his Marrakech top 10, as funny as surprising.



Marrakech Insiders - Riad Camilia Rooftop



What is your story with Marrakech and its medina?

After a first trip through the south of Morocco as a backpacker when I was 20, I returned to spend a few months in the Oriental, an unknown region of the North-East of the Kingdom, as I just returned from a few years to Madagascar. In 2011, the management of the Riad Camilia is proposed to me, I seized then the opportunity. Since, I’ve lived in the medina within the Boutique-Hotel that I manage, I thus live a village life within the medina, in one of the most vibrant and popular districts. My daily life is therefore very focused on the medina which is also the heart of Marrakech.



When and why did you decide to come and settle there permanently?

Permanently, for six years, but I can’t come to terms with the idea of installation because it is not in my lifestyle. On the other hand, this professional opportunity allowed me to discover an unusual Marrakech, and then enjoy this life out of time. To pass from the medieval feeling (in no way pejorative) to the feeling of living in a very international city is quite exhilarating and perfectly match what I seek after the remoteness of the Ilian life in the Indian Ocean or the gloom of life in Europe.



What is the story of Riad Camilia?

Riad Camilia is the crazy project of a french couple who in 2001 buys a house then … four in the end. A cocoon for peaceful stays, Riad Camilia has become a home of nearly 700 m² on the ground and 600 m² of garden terrace. Over the years, the owners decided to open their place to the public and instructed me to professionalize it. The building dates back to the eighteenth century, but its architecture had been mishandled for constraints related to its practical aspect. During its renovation, the aim was to get closer to the architectural principles of the era of its initial construction, to blow Orientalism back into the walls. Beyond the professional link with this place, I’d developed an emotional relationship with it; by what we create with my team and by what we recreate with the owners so that the house always lives more…




Marrakech Insiders - Riad Camilia



Do you have a passion? An activity you like to do especially?

It is simply what makes my daily life that I particularly like. My passion: bring a bit of Moroccan magic to people who have chosen to discover an unusual Marrakech from the inside. Our international clientele nourishes me culturally, and it often lets me know that I’m transporting it to the land of “Thousand and One nights”, what more can I say?



Your best anecdote on the medina?

Being stopped by a woman, who hands me a wooden board by her half-open door, so I can carry her dough and take it to be baked in the community oven. Oh yes, and I forgot … Dare to be carried by the flood, dare to lose to better find oneself, to dare smile without counting is what makes it possible to discover what life in the medina is, in my view,  the medina is an anecdote all by itself!



Marrakech Insiders - Riad Camilia view Atlas



Marrakech Insiders, the best way to visit Marrakech



A few years ago, Rachel, born and raised in Switzerland, discovered by chance the ocher city. But what followed was in no way due to chance. Her curiosity was thoroughly aroused, she strove, in the course of her academic work, to reconstruct the puzzle of the architectural heritage of Gueliz. She went through tons of archives, interviewed the city's living memories and explored its sleepy nooks. Today, Rachel tells her stories on a shiny sidecar and published a book with Editions Sarrazines & Co retracing all her finds on the Gueliz.