CHANGE UNIVERSE: Magazine Jewels
Marrakech | HotelJune 6, 2008

My Name is Yela

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"...My name is Yela, I am 16 years old and today is my last day in this wonderful house that my grandfather built many years ago...I am going to marry the man who captured my love whom I love with all my heart...

It's my last day in Marrakech and I need a different experience. Believe it or not I am exhausted by the never-ending stimuli of the city. I have experienced an overload of colors, people, products, music and food. Moreover, I feel a little nostalgic, maybe in need of meditative calm and a daydream of a perfect romantic and loving emotional state. I heard about a girl who lived 250 years ago, and before leaving her house to get married, wrote a letter of her good fortune in love. I must find that place before I leave Marrakech.

The tall, strong driver dressed in black in James Bond-style dark glasses is ready to take my luggage from a possessive Hassan, who doesn't look very happy to see me go. Without a word, he turns the air conditioning on and crosses the entire Medina. We arrive in a strange place where he parks the car and a man with a donkey appears, silently putting my luggage in a small truck and disappearing in a split second. I decide not to talk either and follow this gigantic man to my destination.

Smells, noise, other donkeys, children screaming, heat -- I am absolutely exhausted. After a few minutes we descend toward a small wooden door, at number 58, I think. "Bonsoir Madame." I can't believe where I am. This extremely silent and luminous patio over a large pool of clear running blue water on red rose petals... My God, this is sanctuary."Madame, can I offer you our national welcoming drink, fresh milk with dates?" I have no time to answer, another woman also dressed in black takes away my sandals and puts on some comfortable cushioned white leather Babouch with the name Ana Yela on them. Without even realizing it, I find myself drinking milk. Since I was born I've never drank milk.

The beautiful and young Andrea Kolb comes with a welcoming smile. She inquires whether I had a good trip (she has no idea I have become almost a Marrakechi, which is just perfect for me) and shows me my room saying Bernd, her husband, is waiting for me upstairs close to the 'Magic Carpet'. Are these people nuts?

Wherever I look I see Arabic calligraphy hand-engraved and hammered on pure silver sheets on doors, walls and ceilings. A mystical music of harpsichords and small drums at a distance takes me away, once more I find myself daydreaming. I notice my suitcase already neatly placed near a round and soft wool rug. I recognize on a niche on top of my bed a Nour Candle transformed in a dim lampshade. Where am I? In heaven? What are these texts on the walls? Prayers?

I quickly slip on a comfortable dark blue djellaba I bought at Yves Saint Laurent Jardins Majorelle entrance door from a man that said he needed to work. After a quick shower I feel ready to meet Bernd Kolb, the owner of this enchantment, and ask him all my questions under an iPod and over my well-deserved Moroccan Mint tea.

Ana Yela is a 300 years old city palace in the heart of the Medina. Ana Yela translates literally as "I am Yela" and the architecture tells the story of a girl called Yela who once lived in this house. Her letter apparently was found during the renovations. The restoration of the building took moths and was carried out using only traditional Moroccan craftsmanship, for which Marrakech is famous worldwide. The work was carried by hand by more than 100 artisans without the use of tools.

Mohammed Taha, the most renowned Koranic calligrapher, hammered the story in silver over the vast doors in chronological order through the five suites of the house, each one corresponding to a different chapter. My room belonged to the first chapter, the one where Yela meets her future husband for the first time. I decide to seriously reflect on that under the stars on the magic carpet after my far too interesting chat with this couple, who are originally from Berlin, Germany.

Bernd and Andrea have more ambitious plans. Ana Yela is one of many other top luxurious boutique hotels in places where -- like in desert societies -- fundamentals are based on story telling and where the clash between the past authentic cultural traditions are hidden under modern society globalization creating substance and a certain energy (a Porche next to a donkey).

Thinking about the future and a true concern about today's societal problem-solving, Kolb's business model is inviting groups of people apart from guests to brainstorm their consciousness and creativity living an almost sanctified experience of the senses, re-evaluating thus with the extreme relaxation and well-being their values, lifestyles and future directions. The common experiences will be extended online and shared in a common social network called the "Ana Verse".

Sunset is calling me. Andrea and Bernd look at each other and understand my thoughts...quickly they disappear, reminding me that the dinner they are hosting will be served with other guests from New York at 9 in the dining room adjacent to the pool.

I have been told that breakfast or dinner can be served at the panoramic views of the 'Flying Carpet', the highest point in the city. I have also been told that this is where lovers would meet. I quickly grab my gold Aurora ink pen and a small piece of paper, concentrating on the wind that will surely soon whisper in my ears those magic words (probably in Hebrew ) so that I can be inspired and transported after dinner without the internet, over a roof of the red city, safe back home to be able to write on Joelle Lifestyle, this magic and unforgettable experience that has been living in Marrakech for 10 days!

Enchallah!

Joelle's Tips:

The Riad: Ana Yel

"...My name is Yela, I am 16 years old and today is my last day in this wonderful house that my grandfather built many years ago...I am going to marry the man who captured my love whom I love with all my heart...

t's my last day in Marrakech and I need a different experience. Believe it or not I am exhausted by the never-ending stimuli of the city. I have experienced an overload of colors, people, products, music and food. Moreover, I feel a little nostalgic, maybe in need of meditative calm and a daydream of a perfect romantic and loving emotional state. I heard about a girl who lived 250 years ago, and before leaving her house to get married, wrote a letter of her good fortune in love. I must find that place before I leave Marrakech.
The tall, strong driver dressed in black in James Bond-style dark glasses is ready to take my luggage from a possessive Hassan, who doesn't look very happy to see me go. Without a word, he turns the air conditioning on and crosses the entire Medina. We arrive in a strange place where he parks the car and a man with a donkey appears, silently putting my luggage in a small truck and disappearing in a split second. I decide not to talk either and follow this gigantic man to my destination.Smells, noise, other donkeys, children screaming, heat -- I am absolutely exhausted. After a few minutes we descend toward a small wooden door, at number 58, I think.
"Bonsoir Madame." I can't believe where I am. This extremely silent and luminous patio over a large pool of clear running blue water on red rose petals... My God, this is sanctuary."Madame, can I offer you our national welcoming drink, fresh milk with dates?" I have no time to answer, another woman also dressed in black takes away my sandals and puts on some comfortable cushioned white leather Babouch with the name Ana Yela on them. Without even realizing it, I find myself drinking milk. Since I was born I've never drank milk.

The beautiful and young Andrea Kolb comes with a welcoming smile. She inquires whether I had a good trip (she has no idea I have become almost a Marrakechi, which is just perfect for me) and shows me my room saying Bernd, her husband, is waiting for me upstairs close to the 'Magic Carpet'. Are these people nuts?

Wherever I look I see Arabic calligraphy hand-engraved and hammered on pure silver sheets on doors, walls and ceilings. A mystical music of harpsichords and small drums at a distance takes me away, once more I find myself daydreaming. I notice my suitcase already neatly placed near a round and soft wool rug. I recognize on a niche on top of my bed a Nour Candle transformed in a dim lampshade. Where am I? In heaven? What are these texts on the walls? Prayers?

I quickly slip on a comfortable dark blue djellaba I bought at Yves Saint Laurent Jardins Majorelle entrance door from a man that said he needed to work. After a quick shower I feel ready to meet Bernd Kolb, the owner of this enchantment, and ask him all my questions under an iPod and over my well-deserved Moroccan Mint tea.

Ana Yela is a 300 years old city palace in the heart of the Medina. Ana Yela translates literally as "I am Yela" and the architecture tells the story of a girl called Yela who once lived in this house. Her letter apparently was found during the renovations. The restoration of the building took moths and was carried out using only traditional Moroccan craftsmanship, for which Marrakech is famous worldwide. The work was carried by hand by more than 100 artisans without the use of tools.

Mohammed Taha, the most renowned Koranic calligrapher, hammered the story in silver over the vast doors in chronological order through the five suites of the house, each one corresponding to a different chapter. My room belonged to the first chapter, the one where Yela meets her future husband for the first time. I decide to seriously reflect on that under the stars on the magic carpet after my far too interesting chat with this couple, who are originally from Berlin, Germany.

Bernd and Andrea have more ambitious plans. Ana Yela is one of many other top luxurious boutique hotels in places where -- like in desert societies -- fundamentals are based on story telling and where the clash between the past authentic cultural traditions are hidden under modern society globalization creating substance and a certain energy (a Porche next to a donkey).

Thinking about the future and a true concern about today's societal problem-solving, Kolb's business model is inviting groups of people apart from guests to brainstorm their consciousness and creativity living an almost sanctified experience of the senses, re-evaluating thus with the extreme relaxation and well-being their values, lifestyles and future directions. The common experiences will be extended online and shared in a common social network called the "Ana Verse".

Sunset is calling me. Andrea and Bernd look at each other and understand my thoughts...quickly they disappear, reminding me that the dinner they are hosting will be served with other guests from New York at 9 in the dining room adjacent to the pool.

I have been told that breakfast or dinner can be served at the panoramic views of the 'Flying Carpet', the highest point in the city. I have also been told that this is where lovers would meet. I quickly grab my gold Aurora ink pen and a small piece of paper, concentrating on the wind that will surely soon whisper in my ears those magic words (probably in Hebrew ) so that I can be inspired and transported after dinner without the internet, over a roof of the red city, safe back home to be able to write on Joelle Lifestyle, this magic and unforgettable experience that has been living in Marrakech for 10 days!

Enchallah!

Joelle's Tips:

The Riad: Ana Yel

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