Jardin Majorelle

Top choice gardens in Gueliz & Ville Nouvelle

Image by Maremagnum Getty Images

Other guests bring flowers, but French fashion designer Yves Saint Laurent gifted an entire garden to Marrakesh, the city that adopted him in 1966. Saint Laurent and his partner Pierre Bergé bought the electric-blue villa and its garden to preserve the vision of its original owner, French landscape painter Jacques Majorelle, and keep it open to the public. The garden began cultivating in 1924, and thanks to Marrakshi ethnobotanist Abderrazak Benchaâbane, the psychedelic desert mirage of 300 plant species from five continents continues to be preserved.

Even if you're not that into plants, come here to visit Majorelle’s art deco studio, home to the Musée Berbère, which showcases the rich panorama of Morocco's indigenous inhabitants through displays of some 600 artefacts. By far one of the country's most beautifully curated museums, the collection includes wood, leather and metalwork, textiles, musical instruments, religious trappings, and a display of the various regional traditional dress. Best of all is the mirrored, midnight-black octagonal chamber displaying a sumptuous collection of chiselled, filigreed and enamelled jewellery that reflect into infinity beneath a starry desert sky.

From the museum you exit into the boutique with its handsome coffee-table books and pricey souvenirs: Majorelle blue slippers, perfume and pillows embroidered with YSL.