Dar Cherifa

Marrakech, Morocco

Dar Cherifa

Dar Cherifa, historically known as Dar Ijimi, is a late 16th-century house in the medina (old city) of Marrakesh, Morocco. It is located in the Mouassine neighbourhood and is one of the few well-preserved houses from the Saadian period in the city. In recent years it has been restored and is now used as a café and art gallery.

The house has been dated to the Saadian period in the second half of the 16th century, possibly to the reign of Sultan Abdallah al-Ghalib, thanks to its style and to the similarity of its decoration with that of contemporary monuments like the Ben Youssef Madrasa. This would also coincide with al-Ghalib's major construction projects in the Mouassine neighbourhood, which saw the old Jewish quarter displaced (moved to the new Mellah) and a new organized Islamic neighbourhood created around the new Mouassine Mosque. Because of the house's rich decoration, it is assumed to have been built by an aristocratic or wealthy family. It is one of only a handful of historic houses in the city that date from this period – along with the Dar al-Masluhiyyin and the ruined Dar al-Mas'udiyyin – which in turn makes it among the oldest houses of its kind in Marrakesh. The house was known until recently as Dar Ijimi, after the family that lived there.: 64  It was restored in 2000 by Abdellatif Aït Ben Abdallah and since then opened as a café and cultural venue.

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