Sure you’re interested in Morocco, but many arrive in Marrakech with carpets on your mind. While wooly Berber rugs are available throughout the medina, US-based luxury resellers and celebrity buyers flock to La Porte d’Or for the very best.
The souk is arranged along a congested strip of media with second-floor or basement showrooms outfitted in plush sofas and 10-person staff ready to unroll. La Porte d’Or offers the added perk of 8X10 celebrity photos David and Victoria Beckham in traditional garb as well as Elton John while buying their own Berber booty.
Once you have settled on a number you are happy with try to negotiate the shipping and tax into the final price. The salespersons are surprisingly lax (or just exhausted) at the end of bargaining and often don’t negotiate shipping as aggressive as they could.
While some stores offer fixed pricing that is closer to the actual value of the carpets for sale, others are a barterer’s paradise where the 25% rule should be closely heeded. Whatever the salesperson says is the price of the carpet, simply counter the offer at 25% of that suggested price. While this is never what you will inevitably pay for the carpet, the low-ball counter-negotiating will give you a lot of leverage in the ensuing negotiations and likely lead to a price you feel comfortable. If uncomfortable with the local currency, as with Moroccan Dirhams, consider negotiating in US Dollars.