Welcome to one of my favorite places in the world: Morocco! This week I’ll be featuring some of my highlights of this amazing country. Jump in my virtual suitcase and come along for the ride! First stop: Casablanca!
Ready to shed some skin? Head to a public steam bath or “hammam” for the scrubbing of your life!
After two trips to Morocco and two visits to this particular hammam, I can safely say that Hammam Ziani is worth the plane fare.
Sure, you can visit a sauna or a steam room back home, even get an exfoliating scrub, but I can guarantee you have never really had clean skin until you experience the “gommage” or “scrubbing” in this part of the world.
After sweating it out in an intense steam room to soften your skin, you will be called over to begin the treatment. Unlike some hammam, French is used here. If you have neither French nor Arabic, a few gestures and taps on the shoulder and you’ll know when it’s time to turn over.
Using an abrasive mitt slipped on via a strap at the back along with some serious muscle, the attendants sloth away all those layers of dead skin and dirt. I’m not talking a bit of the stuff, this is skin literally rolling off you. No matter how well you look after your skin, I can guarantee you’ll be shocked and disgusted at what you see, and then finally liberated at your new squeaky clean and soft exterior.
There are a number of different treatments and packages available. If you’re wondering what “soaping” is, it’s basically being soaped up all over and then hosed down, nothing ground-breaking although as an extra in a package it certainly doesn’t hurt. Whichever treatment(s) you choose, in my opinion you can’t go past the scrubbing. Everything else you could do elsewhere but I’m certain this experience you can’t emulate.
Hammam Ziani provides lockers free of charge to store your things while in the baths. You should bring your own towel and toiletries as well as a change of underwear as underwear bottoms are worn while showering and during treatments. No bras or tops of any kind are worn in the baths.
If you want to dry your hair, you’ll need to bring your own hairdryer, but remember to check the plug and voltage first. If you don’t bring one, I suggest going during the day to give your hair time to dry before the weather cools in the evening. I had a few sick days to remember that lesson by.
Hammam Ziani (also referred to as Les Bains Ziani) is located at: 59 Rue Abou-Rakrak Benjdia (Liberte), Casablanca.
E-mail : firstname.lastname@example.org
Phone: 0522 31-96-95
Hammam Ziani also has a bath in Marrakech Medina.
For maps to both locations and to confirm current price lists, visit their website: www.hammamziani.ma