The Menara Garden is one of the oldest gardens in the Muslim West. Ancient authors attribute his first arrangement to the Almohad sultan 'Abd al-Mu'min ibn' Alî (r. 1130-1163). According to al-Baydhaq, the founder of the Almohad dynasty, returning from Salé in 1157, had the Marrakech planted bouhaïra, a huge enclosed orchard with a large basin for the storage of large quantities of water intended for the irrigation of fruit trees and vegetables located within the enclosure. The author ofal-Istibsar points out that 'Abd al-Mu'min had a garden planted in the west of the city in the direction of Neffis, which must have been near the palace, the door of which is roughly opposite the Menara basin, which could correspond to this inner basin of the Caliph's garden.
The water needs of these spaces were met thanks to the underground drains (Khettara), dug according to a technique initiated by the Almoravids from the XIe century and adopted by the Almohads, who enriched the network of surface channels. The creation of these gardens, according to Ibn Sahib Assalate, is attributed to Hajj ibn Yaïch, scientist and legislator of the Almohad empire. In addition to its utility and leisure functions, this basin was used to train Almohad soldiers in swimming, in preparation for crossing the Mediterranean to Andalusia.
Under the Saadians, the Menara garden was reported by the authors in 1579. The princes reused it by fitting out a pied-à-terre. The Alawite sultan Sidi Muhammad ibn 'Abdallâh built a pavilion there with a belvedere which served as a place for walks and rest. The building and its small garden are surrounded by a high adobe wall. Its thick stone walls have chained angles made of false bricks. It is covered with the classic pyramid roof of green tiles. The building consists of two levels. A ground floor for domestic use is occupied by four massive pillars and preceded by a fore-body of three arches overlooking the basin; you reach the upper level by a narrow and steep staircase. The upper floor has a large balcony with balustrades resting on the front part and dominated by a blind arch pierced by a low door. The key to the arch is made of a stone motif wearing a band bearing an inscription on which one can read a famous quote in honor of the prophet Muhammad and the date of 1286 AH (1869- 70).
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