El Khorbat Hotel & Restaurant – Saving the heritage through Ecotourism

El Khorbat Hotel & Restaurant in Morocco is located in an ancient fortified ksar (castle) which was built in the nineteenth century. The manager and staff have worked very hard and still do to make their business as sustainable as possible by focusing on the environment, community and cultural heritage. 

The responsible tourism project was set up by three partners, Ahmed Ben Amar, Joan Castellana and Roger Mimó, in an attempt to improve the lives of the inhabitants of the village El Khorbat and to develop a sustainable oasis.

The castle was restored by a local organisation with financial help from the College for Architecture Techniques from Barcelona respecting old techniques and the authenticity of the building.

The management has an impressive set of environmental and social actions in place to ensure the protection of the rich cultural and historical heritage.

Environmental actions

-          Placing low energy consuming light bulbs

-          Using renewable energy (sun energy) to heat water

-          Recycling the waste

-          Planting indigenous plants

-          Encouraging guests to use a carriage or bike to visit touristic sites

-          Educating guests

Social actions

-          All 14 employees are from the local community

-          Encouraging women to participate in the project

-          Building a daycare center for preschool children

-          Repairing the irrigation canals in the village

-          Building a polyvalent center for the village

On top of an already very impressive list, El Khorbat Hotel organises different cultural activities to let their guests experience the rich folklore.