The Blue Oasis

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The photo reflects the matching of the colour blue with this garden.

 Below are excerpts of a piece published in Gardening in South Africa, a leading magazine for South Africa’s vast and keen gardening community.

Majorellegarden1r MikeAlexandraAs both a gardener and garden writer I am in the fortunate position of being able to visit many outstanding gardens both for my work and as inspiration. Strangely the Majorelle Garden on the outskirts of Marrakech was one I visited reluctantly and with low expectations. I had foolishly been put off by the build up portraying it as a small garden in which plants such as bamboo and ferns could be seen growing along side cacti and other succulents. This combination plus a great emphasis on wild use of primary colours sounded just a little too kitsch for me.

Majorellegarden8r MikeAlexandraWhat I found when I finally did get there was one of the most stunning gardens I have ever visited. Breathtaking even after the souks and the show time of the Place Jamea el Fna in the heart of Marrakech,The twelve acre garden lies on the edge of the city and provides a wonderfully cool oasis, away from snake charmers and relentless touts selling camel rides.It was created in the 1920′s by Jacques Majorelle, son of a renowned Art Nouveau cabinet maker. Majorelle started off studying architecture but switched to his passion for painting which he studied at the Ecole des Beaux Arts in Nancy. He was a keen traveller and much inspired by Islamic culture. He moved to Morocco for his health after contracting what is thought to have been Tuberculosis and once there bought a small parcel of land on which he started to build both his garden and home. Gradually he was able to acquire more land parcels until he had the twelve acres that today form the garden (…)


Yves Saint Laurent’s ashes were spread there following his death in 2008 and the garden is now part of the Yves Saint Laurent Foundation. It employs 75 people and houses the Islamic Art Museum. Students of Morocco may gain free entry and all profits generated from its six hundred thousand visitors per year are returned to Moroccan based organisations.

Read more here.

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