Morocco Travel Expert Optimistic About Rebuilding Tourism After Earthquake

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The individual who played a pivotal role in developing tourism in Morocco’s Atlas Mountains expressed his gratitude for surviving the recent catastrophic earthquake. Sadly, some students from the schools he helped establish were not as fortunate.

Mike McHugo, an innovative entrepreneur, transformed an ancient fort situated 60km south of Marrakech into the renowned eco-lodge, the Kasbah du Toubkal. This eco-lodge is nestled in the foothills of North Africa’s highest mountain, Toubkal, near the village of Imlil.

On the fateful Friday night, McHugo was in his room at the property when the earthquake struck at 11:11 pm. He recounted the frightening experience, emphasizing that he and his brother were unable to leave their downstairs bedroom due to falling objects. They sought refuge under the bed, ensuring their safety.

Following the quake, McHugo conducted roll calls to ensure the well-being of their guests and staff, thankfully finding no injuries among them. Concerned about potential aftershocks, they spent the night outdoors.

The original kasbah sustained severe damage and may require rebuilding rather than repair, but the newly constructed rooms endured remarkably well.

McHugo, acknowledging his good fortune to survive the ordeal, emphasized his focus on a charity he established called “Education For All Morocco.” This charity aims to provide educational opportunities for girls in the region who would otherwise lack access to education.

While many structures in the region require major repairs or rebuilding, McHugo is optimistic about the swift resumption of tourism, believing that life will return to normal, and the area will rebuild and thrive.

Since the earthquake, McHugo described his experiences as “living on adrenaline.”

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