Lush, layered influences bring a touch of exotic glamour into any interior.
—by Rima Suqi
Moroccan style is having a moment, fueled by the maximalist trends of layering colors and patterns galore. “It’s timeless, yet still feels exotic and unusual,” explains Stephanie Rudloe, owner of Marrakech Designs (179 Newbury St., 917.658.4727), a showroom in Boston with a clientele that includes starchitect Peter Marino. “When these decorative elements are extracted from tradition and fantasy and rearranged by designers, the possibilities are endless.”
Maryam Montague, author of the book Marrakesh by Design, agrees. “It’s all about striking architecture, saturated colors, and complex patterns,” she says, “but you don’t have to be a design maximalist to bring elements of the style into your home.”
For minimalists who live with modern furniture, Montague suggests classic Beni Ourain rugs and leather poufs. The more adventuresome might opt for brightly patterned floor tile with a pierced lantern above, and a wedding blanket thrown over a bed or sofa.
Both Rudloe and Montague highly recommend visiting Morocco to experience the style and culture firsthand, perhaps booking a room at the famed La Mamounia Palace Hotel in Marrakech or Sir Richard Branson’s Kasbah Tamadot retreat in the Atlas mountains, followed by a “Design Safari” with Montague, who expertly navigates the myriad shops in the souks, plans visits to artisans’ studios, and arranges for meals in exceptional private homes. It’s an experience so intoxicating that nostalgic travelers often find themselves re-creating the style in their own houses and apartments after they return from Morocco.