A 40-minute drive from Agadir, the laid-back Berber fishing village and former hippy hangout of Taghazout counts as one of the most idyllic spots on Morocco’s Atlantic coast. While it might not have the medinas and more cosmopolitan panache of cities like Casablanca and Marrakech, its sandy beaches, world-class waves and peaceful ambience serve as significant draws for surfers, yogis and creatives with a slower pace of travel in mind.
Hotel offerings here lean more towards independent lodges and hip guesthouses. In keeping with its fellow neighbours’ art-forward design aesthetic, bohemian meets Moroccan style hideaway by the ocean, Seaside Hotel Taghazout is making its debut this spring.
Since founding Dfrost Almugar Surf and Yoga Villa in 2008, Mohammed ‘Mo’ Zokay has helmed one of the original and leading holiday destinations in Taghazout. He also opened one of the very first surf shops in the area. It was a shared love of riding the waves that led to his meeting Swiss national Loredana Ferragina in 2010, later co-founding dedicated yoga retreat Villa Surya in nearby Imi Ouaddar in 2014.
For their third property, the couple wanted to create a special place beside the ocean that merged modern and Moroccan design sensibilities where they could share their passion for surfing and yoga with guests. Enter Seaside Hotel Taghazout. A completely renovated four-level boutique property with just 12 private rooms, lush garden oasis, infinity pool, seafront sundecks, direct beach access, and a rooftop yoga shala.
An authentic take on Morocco
With accommodations ranging from oceanfront balcony suites (which feature bijou living areas, private sundecks and hammocks) to standard rooms with ocean or mountain views, design and décor details here strike the perfect balance of modern with just the right amount of whimsy. Surf-inspired artwork features throughout. The colour palette is a study in tasteful neutral tones with a pleasing blend of natural and raw materials like wood and poured concrete being a particular highlight. Bathrooms are understated, yet polished, affairs that feature rain showers and come stocked with locally made argan oil products.
“After creating Taghazout Villa with Mo and developing Villa Surya by myself, it felt natural to take on this project,” explained Loredana, who conceived the design vision for the property. “Just as with our other locations, we aimed to create a home away from home at our new Seaside Hotel for like-minded people to feel comfortable, safe, and just enjoy being who they are.” She added that while surfing, yoga and spa treatments are all on offer, the team wants to encourage guests to book their lodgings and, in keeping with the unhurried vibe of Taghazout, whenever possible, leave the details to decide later on.
Serving as the unofficial heart of Seaside Hotel, the Kitchen Club Restaurant and Bar was created to set a new standard for food and dining out in Taghazout. Also open to the public (noon to 11pm), the kitchen showcases locally sourced produce, including vegetables and meat from nearby farms, in its Mediterranean and Middle Eastern-inspired dishes. Evenings get decidedly more upbeat with drinks and dancing thanks to its nightly DJ-led sunset gatherings.
According to Mo and Loredana, the real jewel in this stylish stay’s crown might be its palm tree-lined garden oasis and oceanfront infinity pool. “The sun deck is right at water level with views overlooking Anchor Point – the king of the waves in Morocco, and there are plenty of welcoming sunbeds for real relaxation,” they shared. A ten-minute walk to the legendary (and expert-level only) surf spot, guests can book surf sessions or rent SUP boards through the Surf Club. Alternatively, they can land on mats for one of three daily yoga classes – limber up with a pre-breakfast active flow at 7.30am, hit the 90-minute yoga flow at 11am, or wind down with a post-surf restorative yin yoga flow at 6pm.
A bohemian beach town
Guests can also easily spend a morning or afternoon exploring the winding streets and white-washed buildings of Taghazout as they make their way towards Panorama Street – a few steps from Taghazout Beach. It’s another notable point break in the area, which also doubles as a classic photo spot. Anyone in the mood for some souvenir shopping should pencil in a trip to Souk El Had in Agadir. A popular place with locals and travellers alike, its multitude of stalls carry everything from spices and fruit to traditional Moroccan handicrafts, souvenirs and jewellery.
“Being here in Southern Morocco, we have what many people miss in the cold season – sun and lots of warmth,” said Loredana, who adds it’s also something reflected in their brand name (‘Dfrost’ being a playful variation of the word ‘defrosts’). “We’re here for people looking to catch some of the 360 days of sunshine at our Surf and Yoga Villa in Taghazout or Villa Surya in Imi Ouaddar for a yoga and meditation retreat or now combine the two at Seaside Hotel Taghazout,” she added.
Just a three-hour flight from Europe and the UK, Ferragina added that creating inspiring places to host surfers, yogis and globetrotters had always been a passion for herself and Mo. “We created these places from our love of surfing, yoga, nature, and healthy food. Over the past decade, this area has developed into something of a hotspot that we feel fortunate to share. Whether it’s surfing world-class waves, practicing yoga to the sound of the ocean, or meditating and enjoying Morocco’s traditional delights in our properties, we can’t wait to welcome everyone to come and experience our new little slice of heaven in Taghazout this year.”
Mid-March to May and September to October are some of the best times to visit Morocco.
Nightly rates at Seaside Hotel Taghazout start at 85 Euros per person for a premium ocean balcony suite.
The DFrost team can also organise day trips to the pretty coastal city Essaouira (Sundays), regional capital Marrakech (Thursdays), and the swimming oasis and waterfalls of Paradise Valley, including a visit to a traditional Berber village (Mondays only).
Address: Seaside Hotel Taghazout, Taghazout, Morocco
Phone: +212 662 110-300
Photography courtesy of Seaside Hotel Taghazout.