Wednesday, February 20, 2019

An App For Visitors to Fez

Fez: A geolocation application to boost tourism

The Regional Tourism Council (CRT) in Fez has just launched a geolocation application. "Downloadable from App store, this tool can locate restaurants, travel agencies, hotels, and craft locations," says Yassir Jawhar, delegate chairman of the CRT.

According to Yassir Jawhar, "tourists could easily go to geolocated locations, give their opinion, buy a service or a product at the lowest cost". "Through this application, the CRT is allied with the objectives of digitalisation launched by the ONMT," adds Jawhar.

Note that an interactive site and a new tourist guide of Fez are being finalised. There is a press trip planned for early March, which will promote the new facets of the destination.


Tuesday, February 19, 2019

Free Concert in Fez

Teri & the Electric Blues Parade in Concert! Thursday, February 21 at 7 PM ALIF Riad, 6 Derb Drissi, Batha, Fes Medina

Since last year's tour of the American Language Centers, Teri & The Electric Blues Parade have been developing their own sound and writing new songs influenced by their rock, blues and jazz sound. The new songs take the listener on a musical journey from gentle moments of musical beauty to big sounds of psychedelic rock! Some of these new songs were influenced by the band's previous visit to Morocco. There will be opportunities to speak with the band and ask questions about the way that performing and visiting Morocco has been an influence on their new music.

This concert, organized by the ALC-ALIF Music Club, is free and open to the general public.


Moroccan Airports Break Records

Moroccan airports received about 1.861.875 customers in January 2019, making this the highest recorded number of passengers

According to data from the Moroccan Airport Authority (ONDA), Mohammed V International Airport in Casablanca received the highest record of global traffic, approximately 40 percent that includes 783.098 passengers.

Meanwhile, other Moroccan airports registered equally positive results. Marrakech’s Menara Airport recorded over 20 percent of increase increase in traffic. , Fes’ Saiss Airport (17,57%), Tangier Ibn Battouta Airport (15,05%), and Rabat-Sale Airport (17,58%).

ONDA announced that while European Airports, which represent 79 percent of international air traffic, have registered a 10 percent increase South American Airports marked a growth of nearly 20 percent.

Meanwhile, North America and the Maghreb countries experienced growth rates of 0.89 and 0.11, respectively. The Far East suffered a decline of 2.3 percent.

Aircraft movements also experienced a booming period.

In January 2019, there were 16,604 movements, an increase of 10.66 percent over the previous year. Mohammed V airport shares 43.97 percent of the global increase for Moroccan airports, while Marrakech-Menara shares 21.71 percent and Agadir Al Massira 8.55 percent.

During the same period, the traffic of commercial aircraft flying over the Moroccan airspace experienced a strong growth of 10.8 percent. Meanwhile, freight traffic recorded during this period increased by 2.66 percent to reach a volume of 7181.60 tons against 6995.32 ton


Monday, February 18, 2019

Stormy Rainfall and Snow in Morocco

Morocco’s National Meteorological Directorate (DMN) has issued an alert forecasting rain and snow in the coming days from Monday to Wednesday across Morocco

Snowfall from 15 to 40 centimetres is expected in several regions including Al Haouz, Azilal, Chichaoua, Midelt, Ouarzazate, and Taroudant from Monday and Tuesday.

Stormy rainfalls are also expected from Monday 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. in the provinces of Essaouira and Safi, and from 3 to 11 p.m. in the provinces of Haouz, Chichaoua, Marrakech, and Taroudant.

Chilly weather is also expected in the provinces of Midelt, Azilal, Tinghir, Al Haouz Ouarzazate, Chichaoua and Taroudant on Tuesday.

Minimum temperatures will range between -5 and 0 degrees Celsius.

The cold wave is also expected on Wednesday in the provinces of Bouleman, Ifran, Midelt, Beni Mellal, Azilal, Tinghit, Al Haouz, Ouarzazate, Chichaoua, Taroudant, and Bouarfa.

Minimum temperatures will be between -6 and -1 degrees Celsius, while maximum temperatures will range between 3 and 8 degrees Celsius in the region.


Another Al Hoceima Earthquake

An earthquake with a magnitude of 4.7 degrees on the Richter scale was recorded today in the province of Al Hoceima, says the National Institute of Geophysics (ING). The quake, whose epicenter is located in Bni Bounsar commune (Al Hoceima province), occurred at 5:35 am (GMT + 1), says the ING National Seismic Monitoring and Warning Network in a seismic warning bulletin.

The tremor was 34 km deep, 34.892 ° N latitude and 4.435 ° W longitude.


Saturday, February 16, 2019

New books for the Fez Medina Children's Library

The Fez Medina Children's Library has just acquired 92 new books, as a result of donations from sponsors and a recent trip to the Casablanca Book Fair
Librarian Samia Bachraoui and treasurer Suzanna Clarke at the Casablanca Book Fair

"This year we expanded our range to include an extra 22 books for young adults, as well as 14 reference books, and six art and craft books," said head librarian Samia Bachraoui.

Treasurer Suzanna Clarke said, "We are aware that the children who attend the library regularly are growing up and need more challenging material, so we wanted to supplement the picture books for younger readers we've bought on earlier trips."

The book purchases were made possible with the generous support of donations from Caroline di Carlo, the Sheik family, Cafe Clock and Plan-It Morocco, ​among other sponsors.

Librarian Samia Bachraoui talks to the Association of Moroccan Libraries

The Medina Children's Library is currently looking for a larger space, close to its current location off the Ta'laa Sghira in the Fez Medina, so it can service a larger number of children and increase the activities on offer.

To find out more about the Fez Medina Children's Library CLICK HERE. 


Thursday, February 14, 2019

Stan Breckenridge in Concert in Fez

Stan Breckenridge in Concert! Monday, February 18 at 7 PM. ALIF Riad, Derb Drissi, Batha, Fes Medina

This concert, in honour of Black History Month and organised by the US Embassy in Rabat and the ALC-Fes/ALIF Music Club, is free and open to the general public.

Stan Breckenridge is a professional musician, academician, author, and holds a Ph.D. in Musicology from Claremont Graduate University In Claremont, California. He has performed and given lecture-performances in England, France, Germany, Hungary, Japan, Lithuania, Mexico, Poland, Slovakia, and the Ukraine. Stan has appeared with and/or performed for personalities such as Madeleine Albright, Bill Cosby, Mahalia Jackson, Jerry Lewis, Martha Reeves (of the Vandellas), Larry McCormick, Rowan and Martin, David Ruffin (of the Temptations), Nancy Sinatra, John Travolta, and John Wayne.

Stan Breckenridge has nine albums: Inspirations (2014), Out of Love for Jazz (2012,) Reflections (2009), A Soulful Christmas (2008), This Is My Song (2007), Live in Poland (2005), Solo (2003), Meditations (2001), and Expositions (1999). He also recorded an album in 2017, "Black and Tan Fantasy," with Poland’s longest-running traditional jazz group – Jazz Band Ball Orchestra (JBBO).

Dr. Breckenridge was selected as a United States Distinguished Chair Fulbright Scholar to Poland for 2012-2014, where he taught at the University of Marie Curie Sklodowska in Lublin, and Jagiellonian University in Kraków. Currently, in addition to performance, he is an “Artist in Residence” Visiting Professor in the Faculty of English at Adam Mickiewicz University in Poland.


Wednesday, February 13, 2019

The Casablanca Medina gets a makeover

The rehabilitation works of the old medina of Casablanca are now entering its last phase, that of the makeover of the public space and the restoration of buildings in ruins

Started in 2010 under the leadership of King Mohammed VI, the rehabilitation program is in its final phase to the delight of the inhabitants. "The medina is changing its face," says Hassan, who lives near the famous restaurant La Sqalla. "The shops are changing their storefront, the streets are cleaner and above all we feel safer with the new public lighting," he says. Today, the old medina and its monuments are popular places for tourists, whether national or foreign. "We see more and more tourists wandering our streets," says Hassan.

Led by the Casablanca Urban Agency and a committee of 18 members, the program has been divided into two main phases. The first, already finalised, extended from 2010 to 2014 and consisted of upgrading the infrastructure of sanitation, water and electricity networks, the restoration of walls, equipment and squares. In 2016, the King inaugurated the health centre and Dar Annassij (weaving house), located in the heart of the medina of Casablanca.

Monuments have also been restored, such as the Ettedgui Synagogue and the Sidi Allal Al Karaouani Mausoleum. In the same way, the Buenaventura church has been converted into a culture house.

Among the main actions carried out were the upgrade of the "Bab Marrakech" crèche, the construction of the "Derb Cadi" youth and women's home, the completion of the "Opera" socio-sports centre and the realisation the "Craftsmen's Space" project, which supports the efforts made to re-qualify handicrafts in the old medina. 40% of the commercial areas were reorganised as well as the creation of a Heritage Interpretation Center (CIP).

The second program focused on improving living and housing conditions, promoting commercial, craft and tourist activities. The Urban Agency of Casablanca (AUC) has just launched a call for tenders for the selection of a provider responsible for the social support of households occupying buildings threatening to fall into ruin. The operation, budgeted at 300 million dirhams, particularly targets the inhabitants of 3,000 buildings threatening to collapse. Aware of the need to accelerate the pace of upgrading and give a boost to this project, the Urban Agency of Casablanca is preparing to launch a call for tenders on February 12, 2019 carrying the social support of households occupying buildings threatening ruin at the Old Medina of Casablanca for an envelope of 4.45 MDH.

 The rehabilitation of the old medina of Casablanca is a priority in view of the challenges that it represents not only architectural but also in terms of protection of the inhabitants of the Medina. The collapse of homes threatening ruin is a real risk.