A Dance Workshop on the Atlantic Shores of Morocco

Calling All Dancers – an amazing opportunity to come and Dance and Perform in Morocco

TRIP PROFILE:

Dar DanseOn a remote stretch of the Atlantic Coast, just to the north of Essaouria, is a very special ‘bubble on the beach’. Dar Danse is a small boutique hotel, a charmed place where you will find it easy switch off and simply.. be. Home to the Filpi family, whose daughter Francesca is a former dancer of The Royal Ballet, this wondrous place with it’s unique open-air studio as it’s beating heart, allows it’s visitors a very special retreat.

A place where the ever changing ocean provides a splendid backdrop - some days a lagoon of crystal blue, and others, wild and charismatic, with the waves crashing on to the sandy shore... just as they have always done since before life even began.

At Dar Danse, time simply does stand still. A fisherman may arrive by donkey to offer  his morning catch, a goat herder may graze his flock by the stone walls and where swallows dip gracefully in and out of the shimmering pool.

This truly is a unique place to come and relax and enjoy.

Journeys Elite, have teamed up with Isle of Wight dance company Dance Vibez. Together they are offering an amazing opportunity for Dancers to come and enjoy an 8 day trip in the summer.

Dar DanceStarting in Marrakech, the trip will then head out to the Atlantic Coast and pass 4 nights at Dar Danse, before returning to Marrakech and a chance to perform in the unique and beautiful Dar Cherifa in the heart of the Medina. The workshop will incorporate classes in Ballet/Freestyle/Hip Hop/Cabaret and Musical Theatre, and is open to all dancers who possess experience in such elements.

The trip will be led by Carolyn Hunt-Gouairat of Journeys Elite, who is an experienced expedition leader out in Morocco and the dance workshop will be taught & choreographed by Dance Vibez Teacher Ann Abe.

The trip will also offer a wonderful insight to exotic country of Morocco, with time to enjoy both Marrakech and Essaouira (See below for  a more detailed description on Morocco).

N.B Any dancers under the age of 18 must be accompanied by a parent or adult.

 


ITINERARY:

8 Day Trip (7 Nights)
Fly from the UK  (See flights below)
Trip starts on arrival in Marrakech.

  • Day 1
    On arrival into Marrakech Airport you will be met, and transferred to our Hotel/Riad for the first night’s accommodation in Marrakech.
    Depending arrival times, take lunch in Marrakech and/or Dinner.
    1 night Riad Bahia Salam or Hotel Della Rosa – Twin Room Basis

  • Day 2
    Shortly after breakfast in Marrakech, we will leave by mini bus, and make the 3 hour journey west to the Atlantic Coast.
    Dar Danse is located about 40 km north of the port town of Essaouira. We will either take lunch in Essaouira or Dar Danse.
    Depending arrival time at Dar Danse, have time to check-in to our accommodation, familiarise and relax into our surroundings, and commence the dance workshop.
    1st night Dar Danse – Dinner
    Twin Share basis on rooms

  • Day 3
    First full day of our dance workshop – Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner
    2nd night Dar Danse – Dinner
    Twin Share basis on rooms

  • Day 4
    Second full day of our dance workshop – Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner
    3rd  night Dar Danse – Dinner
    Twin Share basis on rooms

  • Day 5
    Third full day of our dance workshop - Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner
    4th  night Dar Danse – Dinner
    Twin Share basis on rooms

  • Day 6
    Make the return journey back to Marrakech.  If no time has been spent in Essaouira prior, then visit the Medina and port and take lunch.  Continue onto Marrakech.
    1st night Riad Bahia Salam or Hotel Della Rosa – Twin Share basis
    Dinner in Marrakech

  • Day 7
    A day to enjoy Marrakech – and an evening Performance at the Dar Cherifa.
    2nd night Riad Bahia Salam or Hotel Della Rosa – Twin Share basis
    Dinner in Marrakech

  • Day 8 - Transfer to the Airport for return flights to the UK

 

Includes:
  • Airport Transfers on Days 1 and 8 in Marrakech
  • 3 Nights in Marrakech at either Riad Bahia Salam or Hotel Della Rosa on a Twin Share Basis
  • 4 Nights in Dar Danse just north of Essaouira
  • 7 Breakfasts at above stated accommodation
  • 6/7 lunches & 7  dinners – 3 in Marrakech and 4 at Dar Danse
  • Return transfers by mini-bus from Marrakech on Day 2 to Essaouira and from Essaouira back to Marrakech on Day 6
  • Visits to Essaouira and Marrakech
  • Performance at Dar Cherifa on final evening

Excludes:

  • International Flights
  • Travel Insurance
  • Entrances, Tips, drinks and snacks

FLIGHTS:
Once the departure has been confirmed on a Group Size of 12 persons, Carolyn will advise as to the best flight options available in and out of Marrakech.   Flights are scheduled 6 months in advance, so it is hoped by Christmas we can give you the best flight options available.   Royal Air Maroc fly daily to Marrakech (via Casablanca from Heathrow), they also fly 3-4 times a week direct. Easy Jet also fly daily to Marrakech and this could prove the better option from the UK, particularly from the South.

WEATHER
Summer months in Morocco can be incredibly warm. The majority of the trip will be spent out on the Atlantic Coast, where there is always a cool breeze coming off the ocean. Daytime temperatures in July could well reach the low 40’s, but where we plan to stay in Marrakech, rooms will be air-conditioned.

IS THIS TRIP FOR YOU
Our aim is provide a dance retreat in a unique and beautiful location.  A week away from everyday life, doing something both fun and rewarding. If you have experience in Ballet/Freestyle/Hip Hop/Cabaret or musical theatre, and perhaps even haven’t danced or performed for sometime, then this trip will be ideal to re-introduce such elements as part of a small group.  Or if you are regular dancer/performer, but would welcome the opportunity of experiencing North Africa for the first time, then what better way, as part of a group of like-minded individuals and the opportunity to dance in a wonderful setting.

INSURANCE
It is a condition of joining this trip that you must be insured against medical and personal accident risks.  (Carolyn can advise).

GROUP/STAFF
The trip will be led by Carolyn Hunt-Gouairat, and she will be accompanied by her young daughter Zzahra (who currently dances with Dance Vibez and Ann Abe on a regular basis – she may well even join in). Carolyn has worked out in Morocco for the last 14 years, and has an in-depth knowledge of the country. Ann Abe of Dance Vibez will lead and choreograph the workshop, along with her daughter Yuki Abe. Our ideal group size will be a total of 14 persons.

ACCOMMODATION
In Marrakech we will stay in either the 4 star Della Rosa Hotel, or the beautiful Riad (traditional Moroccon house made into a small boutique hotel) Riad Bahia Salam. Both ideally located in the city, offering excellent accommodation. Rooms will be on a twin share basis, all en-suite. For the workshop we will travel out to the coast and to Dar Danse. This boutique hotel is the home of the Filpi family, who have created their own ideal dream location for which to relax and dance.   Rooms again will be on a twin share basis. We will have full use of the all hotel facilities, the pool, hammam, gardens and there is of course the beach.

FOOD
All meals on the trip are included. Breakfast at each location. Lunch will be provided either in Marrakech or Essaouira whilst we are travelling or at Dar Danse. Dinner will be taken in restaurants in Marrakech, and for 4 nights at Dar Danse.  (Drinks and snacks are not included in the price)

TRANSPORTATION
For Airport transfers both on arrival and departure, and for the  journey from Marrakech to Dar Danse and back, we will use a comfortable air-conditioned mini-bus and driver.

EXTRA EXPENSES AND SPENDING MONEY
Depending on how much shopping you wish we suggest you bring around £100.00. Drinks and snacks are not included in the price (but all meals are).

TIPS
It is customary to tip staff and Hotels/Riads and we suggest a budget of about £2.00 a day to cover this.  Also a tip to any driver will be appropriate.

BOOKING THE TRIP
To book a place on this departure, please either click on the contact us page and email Carolyn, or alternatively call 01983 853064. You will need to complete our Booking Form and return to us with a 10% deposit to secure a place on the trip. Full payment will be required 8 weeks prior to departure (which will be Monday 1st June 2015).

For more information on the trip you can call Carolyn Hunt-Gouairat directly on 01983 853064 or click here to contact her online .

N.B Any dancers under the age of 18 must be accompanied by a parent or adult.


MOROCCO
A land of epic history and exceptional diversity, Morocco will intrigue and inspire the visitor.  It lies on the northern-most tip of the vast continent of Africa, yet it is just 14 km from Europe if you travel across the Straits of Gibraltar.

Morocco is renowned for its warm welcome, sun-drenched landscapes and enduring mystery and contrasts abound in this immense country.   Its long western coast is washed by the crashing waves of the Atlantic Ocean, while to the north, the warm Mediterranean caresses its shores.

Inland the traveller can experience the exhilarating views in the High Atlas Mountains, or indulge in the eerie solitude of the vast expanses of the Sahara Desert.

As if the variety of landscapes was not enough, Morocco offers a rich combination of cultures, people and architecture.  Here, the sophisticated culture of the Arab world blends with the raw beauty of Africa and, in its unique cities, imperial architecture and medieval souks provide a glimpse of traditions that have changed little in the past thousand years.


MARRAKECH
Marrakech, often described as ‘the jewel at the foot of the Atlas Mountains’, Built by the Almoravid Berbers in the 11C, as a base for their rampaging conquest into Europe and Eastern Africa, it is still regarded today as the gateway city to the immense continent to the south.

This vibrant and delightful city, which was once the capital, still bears witness today to the past splendor of its fascinating history.    A chance to explore the museums, palaces, gardens, and souks, and soak up the infinite variety of aromas and scents.   Enjoy the uniqueness of the Djemaa El Fna, by day and by night..

Guilez, the new city, introduced under the French in the 1930’s, and home to the beautiful Jardin Marjorelle.   The gardens were designed and given as gift to the people of Marrakech, by the French Artist Jacque Marjorelle, in the 1930’s.   


EssaouiraESSAOUIRA
Essaouira  (formerly known as Mogador) is often regarded as Morocco’s most romantic coastal town and its cluster of offshore islands are believed to be what first attracted people to this region.  Essaouira’s isles were home to the shells from which the Tyrian purple dye, beloved by the Roman Emperors, was extracted.

At the end of the 15th century, it was the Portuguese who established the port of Mogador, and then in 1765, it was the French architect Theordore Cornut who was hired to design the city.

It was at this time that the city became known as Essaouira, meaning well-designed, and the town’s walled medina was added to Unesco’s World Heritage in 2001.

Its well-preserved, fortified layout is a prime example of European military architecture in North Africa.

For the visitor, the mellow atmosphere, narrow winding streets lined with colourful shops, whitewashed houses and heavy wooden doors make it a wonderful place to stroll and explore.

The dramatic wave-lashed ramparts that surround the medina are a great place to get an overview of the labyrinth of streets.  The large working port is a bustling place with plenty of activity throughout the day, and there is a long sweeping sandy beach which runs away to the south.

Travel Safety

As a responsible Tour Operator, safety to our clients is paramount.  A trip would not run if it were not deemed safe.  If the British Foreign & Commonwealth Office (FCO) advise against travel to a certain destination, anyone booked to that particular destination will be contacted.  Journeys Elite check on a regular basis with the FCO and local contacts.

The latest FCO advice can be obtained via the FCO website: www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice
or via our Links page

General enquiries switchboard 020 7008 1500

All non-UK travellers should check with their own government travel advisory departments.

The above information is given in good faith, and covers the average range of conditions likely to be found on this trip.    In any kind of travel, abnormal conditions can prevail at any time, and can therefore be subject to excepted changes.  In order to enjoy your holiday you should be prepared to be flexible where necessary