Just a few days ago we got our passports freshly stamped, making it home after two weeks in Morocco and Paris! We brought back with us some of our best sourcing memories to date and what we loved about this trip to Morocco (our second sourcing go-around in Marrakech!) is that we saw familiar faces. Habib, the Moroccan artisan who creates HON’s round pillow collection, was someone we had long anticipated seeing again, to talk business, design new products and enjoy a rooftop meal together. While we went last year without a single acquaintance, this year reconnecting with friends and making more connections felt so right. It’s like Marrakech is starting to feel like a little part of the world HON belongs in.
Here’s our best design and travel memories that we want to share before tucking them away for next time!
1. Day at the Coast
One of the first days in Marrakech, we took a day trip to the Moroccan coast to meet with a new vendor. Not only were the coastal views stunning, but we got to design new pieces for our shop (which opens Nov. 9!), which is always a favorite project for HON. Looking through the vendor’s vintage rugs, we were educated in the rug-making process. Little did we know that the faded rug trend that's really in right now means that there are literal fields of rugs! Artisans take vintage rugs and lay them in the dessert and it’s their full-time job to rotate the rugs everyday creating the desired outcome.
2. HON Dreams of a Riad
When booking details for Marrakech, we came across the most charming, locally owned riad run by Alice and Gaby, who say they hope whoever books a stay leaves as a friend. And it’s so true. Everything about the riad was beautiful — the hospitality, the stunning design and impeccable breakfasts delivered to our rooftop. It’s a hidden gem that’s a simple left, then right off the main medina (last year we were often lost, wandering the narrow streets trying to find our hotel).
This dreamy spot had us dreaming of starting our own riad in Morocco! It’s made it’s way to the top of our dream list and we cannot wait to tackle a design and a space we can share, extending the same welcome we felt with Alice and Gaby.
3. Moroccan Rooftops
Moroccan food hasn’t always been a highlight (minus fare and cocktails at El Fenn) but this trip we found Terrasse des épices in Marrakech. The menu features a modern take on Moroccan foods with a Mediterranean twist, and it’s perfect. And the location is right across the street from Habib’s shop, so we felt at home. We ate on the rooftop, allowing us to get some air, and it the even had a great DJ. Added bonus? They served wine, which is rare in Morocco.
4. Food with a View
Paris was so fun — and everything about the city is beautiful — and decadent. Starting with another rooftop highlight, we had rooftop cocktails at our hotel (what a view!).
Some of our favorite Paris memories were the foodie spots we found in the Montmartre neighborhood we stayed in. Just around the corner, we discovered Le Petite Moulin, a locally-owned charcuterie spot with seating for just a few. Featuring natural wines and a great selection of fresh, locally made cheese, we got to watch the chef craft each board. It was just perfect.
5. Rattan Everything at MO
It was a dream come true to go to Maison & Object. Everything we saw was rattan and cane, baskets and texture, Africa and basket walls — everything we love! Rattan is truly timeless, something that can fit in with most styles well and adds texture and we loved seeing it stay as such a trend. A favorite vendor was Rock the Kabah, who specializes in textured light fixtures with the best scale. We were hooked!
A favorite Maison experience was seeing our Turkish rug vendor — a familiar face halfway across the world! We purchased gorgeous silk pillows for the shop and he talked us into a sourcing trip to Turkey next year! We can't wait!
6. The Showroom of our Dreams
Going to the showroom and shop for India Mahdavi was hands-down a life changing experience. She's a designer with so much talent that we’ve adored from afar and seeing her style in person was dreamy. Truly, she does nothing wrong and creates playful, colorful pieces with unique silhouettes that are so inspiring. She doesn’t take it all too seriously, and that’s what we love.
For more photos of our Morocco and Paris travels, check out our instagram and the highlight reel of our travels! And Queen City locals, mark November 9 as our shop grand opening — come see our finds in person! We just received more than 100 Moroccan rugs yesterday and are so excited to share our sourcing trip goods.
Stay tuned for our full Guide to Paris that we’re releasing soon, adding it to our Travel Guide collection!