A DESTINATION: JARDIN MAJORELLE
The Jardin Majorelle in Marrakech, Morocco is one of the most visited sites in Morocco. French painter Jacques Majorelle took forty years to create this two and half acre botanical garden. Jacques Majorelle was sent to Morocco in 1917 to recuperate from a rather serious medical condition. After spending a bit of time in Casablanca, he traveled to Marrakech and fell in love with the vibrant colors and street life he found there. After traveling around North Africa and the Mediterranean, he eventually decided to settle down in Marrakech. In the 1950s, Majorelle was forced to sell the house and land due to a divorce with his wife. The garden fell into poor conditions due to neglect.
Designer Yves Saint Laurent and Pierre Bergé discovered the Jardin Majorelle in 1966. It was their first trip to Marrakech. Yves Saint Laurent and Pierre Bergé fell in love with the garden. In 1980 they purchased Jardin Majorelle to restore it. Yves Saint Laurent would say he was able to find an unlimited amount of inspiration in the gardens.
Yves Saint Laurent passed away on June 1, 2008, in Paris. His ashes were scattered in the rose garden of the Villa Oasis. A memorial was built in the garden, designed around a Roman pillar which was brought from Tangier and set on a pedestal with a plate showcasing his name, so that visitors remember him and his contribution to fashion.
On November 27, 2010, the street in front of the Jardin Majorelle’s entrance was renamed the Rue Yves Saint Laurent in his honor. The gardens attract more than 700,000 visitors annually. If you ever make it to Morocco, make sure this on top of your list of things to do. It’s one of the top places on my bucket list and I plan on making it there ASAP.