Arsat Moulay Abdeslam Cyber Park
While in Marrakech it is recommended that visitors take the time out to relax and enjoy the beauty of the Arsat Moulay Abdeslam Cyber Park. The park is eight hectares in size and was commissioned by Prince Moulay Abdeslam in the eighteenth century. He constructed the park as a food producing area, but it was restructured into a botanical garden by the French during their occupation. The park eventually became derelict as no organization was put in charge of it. With locals using the park for football and other activities, the grounds became eroded and not a glimmer of its former beauty remained.
The garden has the Atlas Mountains as its backdrop and was created on the ideal location, as it has an endless water supply. The Foundation Mohammed VI for the Protection of the Environment was created out of concern for environmental protection. The park was one of the first projects the new foundation took on, and with years of uncontrolled use, most of what the gardens once were, were no longer visible.
This did not deter the foundation and in 2003 they began archeological surveys to explore the site. They were surprised to find that there were actually two gardens. They were able to locate the garden created by Prince Moulay Abdeslam and the garden created by the French in 1920. They did have some decisions to make in regard to using modern materials or restoring the garden historically, so they decided on both. There is now a modern garden and a historic Arsat garden. The historical garden is lined with olive trees, lemon trees, lucerne, vegetables and mandarins, with fountain grass restoring the park’s original purpose. The other is a picturesque space with sprawling lawns, walkways, water features and an abundance of plants and trees.
There are also cyber areas, where visitors can quietly sit and send emails using the wi-fi technology available, while the cyber café provides terminals in a tranquil environment. The park was opened to the public in 2005 and is a tribute to the history of the country and the developments and modernization of Morocco.