Le Jardin Majorelle in Marrakech

Jardin majorelle and the studio house, Marrakech
Jardin Majorelle and the studio house, Marrakech

As blue as the sea and sky on a sunny day, the Jardin Majorelle meets you with its beauty and peace when you enter the rather modest gate. Large trees form shadows and provide a comfortable temperature. Le Jardin Garden is often referred to as the Blue Garden.  It is officially named after its founder, the French painter Jacques Majorelle. He spent 40 years building this garden with a great collection of cacti plants, pools and fountains, lush bushes and large blue and yellow pots filled with flowers and placed with diligent care.

Blue reflections, Jardin Majorelle
Blue reflections, Jardin Majorelle

Bring your camera and take your time, don’t rush through the garden. The Jardin Majorelle is a place for contemplation, relax, pleasure and, not least, inspiration if you need to refill your creative jar.

Cactus, fountain and water, Jardin Majorelle
Cactus, fountain and water, Jardin Majorelle

Majorelle died in 1962. He was at least as famous for the Jardin Majorelle as for his paintings. He opened up the garden to the public in 1947. Unfortunately, at the end of his life, Majorelle had financial problems and over a period of time he sold parts of the garden. In the end, he had to sell his entire lifework.

The new owners continued to keep Jardin Majorelle open for the public while planning to build a hotel on the site. Fortunately, this was stopped when Yves Saint Laurent with his friend Pierre Berge fell in love with the garden in 1966. They managed to buy both the garden and the house. Together they continued Majorelle’s efforts to develop the garden to what it is today. When Yves Saint Laurent died in 2008 his ash was spread in the garden.

The Jardin Majorelle is one of Marrakech’s most visited tourist attractions. More than 700,000 visitors each year! If you are in Marrakech, you have to visit. Try to go early in the morning before the place gets too crowded and do not forget to visit the Berber Museum in the middle of the garden. This collection of jewelry and textiles from the Berber culture is Yves Saint Laurent and Pierre Berge’s private collection and is exhibited in Majorelle’s former studio. It is a small but incredibly beautiful museum and the collection gives a thorough insight into the craftsmanship of the Berber culture.

Today, Jardin Majorelle Foundation runs the Jardin Majorelle, which is also part of the larger foundation that takes care of Yves Saint Laurent’s heritage of fashion, drawings, photographs and more. The non-profit foundation supports cultural and educational activities.

Blue and yellow in Jardin Majorelle
Blue and yellow in Jardin Majorelle

With this in mind, I enjoy the aesthetics of the garden. It is carefully thought of and everywhere you see how colors and architectural shapes are playing with together and how the shadows make patterns and constantly new games between the elements. Cacti of all varieties make up an important part of the garden and no garden is perfect if there is no water. There are several pools, many fountains and a varied birdlife. The birds are attracted to this oasis in the middle of the city in the same way as us tourists.

Information about opening hours, prices and location can be found on their website. There you can also read more about Jacques Majorelle, Yves Saint Laurent and Pierre Berge.

Jardin Majorelle

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