One of the coolest things about Marrakech is the juxtaposition between the chaotic and dusty, ancient streets of the Medina and the tranquil, sumptuous riads (traditional Moroccan homes turned hotels/guesthouses) that lie hidden within the Medinas walls. And Im not exaggerating when I say hidden. When we arrived in Marrakech we were instructed to go to the small parking lot at the Bab Doukkala Mosque so that someone from our riad could come meet us (with donkey and wagon in tow for our luggage) to lead us through the maze, impossible to navigate on your own if not first guided. We walked past food and crafts stalls, narrowly escaped death by moped more than once, and arrived at an intricately carved door not so different from the dozen or so doors we passed on the way. Inside, we found a surprisingly chic, and quiet, sanctuary. The Riad Noir DIvoire, one of my favorite riads, is beautifully decorated, with two courtyards, a bar, cigar room and wine cellar, a slender pool backed by a wall with a 21-foot-high waterfall, hammam, and several nooks that extend off the courtyards for lounging, sipping wine, and planning out the days adventure.