I could say that Mara House is a hotel, even a boutique hotel.  It is all that – but it is so much more.  It was built to fill a need felt by myself initially – a need for there to be somewhere in Egypt for the travellers who wanted more than just a bed for the night and some specifically tourist-orientated tour offerings, peppered with shopping expeditions by day.

Egypt, to me, is one of the most important (in so many ways) places on the planet and the fact that it has survived the upheavals of 2011, compounded by the problems of the intervening years, intact only serves to make me more sure of that.  Egypt deserves people who appreciate it’s very real treasures – both ancient and modern, and is prepared to do whatever is necessary to share and experience it’s uniqueness.

I started building Mara House in 2003 and opened the doors to my first guests in 2005.  While Mara House can sleep up to 20 guests – we actually take a maximum of 6 bookings per night.  Because the accommodation at Mara House is in the form of 6 apartment sized suites.

Mara House is for the independent, discerning traveller whose priority in coming to Egypt is the quality and scope of the experience.  We do not compete on price – so we are not for the traveller who is looking for the cheapest option.  Nor do we quote low prices with hidden or added on costs.  For our tours and our accommodation we are transparent in our offers – what you are quoted is the price you pay.

As a result of personal recommendations, great online reviews and consistency in the value of our offers most of our guests now take our complete Luxor package which includes the tours.  Many also avail of our Cairo and Cruise packages.   As tourism to Egypt is improving we are finding more and more visitors prefer to relax and leave the planning of their entire Egypt trip to me and out of that our full 9 night Egypt Package has evolved.

Our promise and our focus is for our guests to experience the best of Egypt in it’s myriad of shapes and forms.

Mara House is NOT ON THE TOURIST strip, nor on the Nile.  We are in a normal, ordinary Egyptian street, among the locals, behind the train station.  Despite our best efforts the streets are dirty and a western person could be forgiven for thinking we are in a poor area.  We are not.  It is simply that Egyptians do not have the same priorities we do when it comes to what is outside the front door.  If you want to see what it is like among the locals then Mara House is for you.  If you prefer the usual 5 star hotel surroundings in the street then you need go to the tourist strip.  When I built Mara House I choose not to be in the tourist strip and among the souvenir shops.  I choose my street as a place where tourists could get a feel for Egypt as it is today and an opportunity to understand a different culture.


Please take time to note your accommodation at Mara House is not just a room it is a apartment sized suite.   Whether you are a solo traveller or a couple your accommodation will consist of a large bedroom which also has a sizeable seated area, separate private sitting room and a bathroom.

If you are a family or group of between 3 and 6 persons your accommodation will consist of 3 separate bedrooms, extra large private sittingroom cum dining area and bathroom.  Most people do not take this in during the booking process are are surprised and delighted when they discover the size and furnishings of their suite.


  • airport or train transfers on arrival and departure
  • apartment sized accommodation per night incl breakfast
  • great tours to the best sites in Luxor with wonderful guides
  • a minibar stocked with drinks and snacks in your suite at reasonable prices
  • laundry service (wash and iron only, no specialist or odd stain removal service)
  • free early check-in and free late check out whenever possible
  • free travel and sightseeing advice
  • internet at Mara House is free wheras most places impose a charge
  • library/book exchange
  • best traditional food in Egypt is the Salahadeen Feast – only served to in-house guests.
  • 3 night package designed to save you research, time and avoid the tourist traps, making the most of your experience in Luxor – the LUXOR package

FOOD and RESTAURANTS in LUXOR  The Salahadeen Restaurant at Mara House is one of the best restaurants in Luxor serving authentic Egyptian family food The Salahadeen Feast is well known and has been a great success with all guests.  Each feast consists of 15 different dishes so you really get to taste a good cross-section of real home cooking.  The restaurant is currently only serving to in-house guests and the Feast is included in the “Luxor with Mara” package on two nights.

What makes Mara House the friendliest hotel in Luxor – more than just a bed?


Finally, the rooftop garden is a haven of green peace and tranquility.   A vast array of cactus and desert plants as well as the famous ever flowering bourgainvillea makes it a peaceful and relaxing space to end the day – a cold beer under the stars on a warm Egyptian night is the perfect end to a lovely day.

SINGLE TRAVELLERS – are welcome – we do NOT charge you extra single supplement on accommodation.

FAMILIES – I am a grandmother myself and I love having families with children come to Mara House.  Our Family Suites mean the family is in the one apartment sized suite not having to go between separate rooms as in most hotels.  If you contact me with the ages of your children and the number of persons in the family or group I will give you a SPECIAL FAMILY QUOTATION.

Please check out our Terms & Conditions before booking.  Payment of deposit is taken as confirmation you are familiar with and accept our Terms & Conditions.

By the way – Egypt is quite safe for tourists   and you can contact me directly here to ask any questions   you might have.  I look forward to hearing from you.


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  1. David - UK 01/03/2017 at 10:41 am

    We did four consecutive days of tours with Mohamed as our guide, all arranged by Mara: Luxor and Karnak temples; the West Bank; Abydos and Dendara and Aswan. These all went very smoothly indeed. Mohamed was an excellent and very knowledgeable guide who exceeded all our expectations. He is obviously very familiar with all of the sites and this enabled us to see far more than we could have seen on our own. He was particularly helpful in allowing us to select tombs to be visited on the West Bank. When we mentioned we would like to try a felucca trip, he immediately arranged this for us. We would not hesitate to use Mohamed again on any future visit to Egypt and our thanks to Mara for setting this up.

  2. Teresa, USA 25/09/2016 at 6:43 am

    My goodness….what an incredible place you have here! I could not have been more fortunate and owe you a debt of gratitude! All of the men have taken such good care of me — from the room and meals to the tours. They have been gracious, patient, attentive “handlers” and I could not have asked for more.

    The heat has been an issue for me. I have experienced 123 degree F heat in Arizona but that does not compare to this.

    Last night my stomach felt queasy and this morning was worse. That combined with the heat I made the decision to cut our long day of touring short. I feel bad but I knew that my feeling poorly would cause more problems if we kept visiting temples. Coming back Ahmed was gracious in getting me the “Mara medicine” and now, at almost 7pm I am beginning to feel better.

    So Mara…..I have only one suggestion. Way too much food! I feel embarrassed to only eat an amount that is appropriate for my stomach and then leave so much left. I do not like waste!
    You have truly put together a wonderful package for travelers and I will tell everyone I know! Also, you are so very well respected…as we were out and about so many said such positive remarks!

    The staff that you have along with drivers and tour guide are all treasures…so very fortunate to have been in their presence!
    Thank you again Mara…

  3. Cindy, Melbourne, Australia 28/03/2016 at 6:22 am

    Mara House is far more than an absolutely fantastic place to stay. With Mara’s guides and driver, I felt absolutely safe and looked after (I travelled as a single female). Her lovely and well-spoken English speaking staff were on hand by SMS and email throughout my entire Egyptian trip. Her drivers and guides have been with her for several years and her guides are Egyptologists. The place is spotless. You get your own sitting room and kitchenette plus a well-stocked fridge. After a busy day sightseeing, free steaming hot cups of tea are brought to you if you send a text or email message downstairs. If you are lucky enough to stay when the cook does a Feast, this was the best meal I had in Egypt and I travelled from Cairo to Aswan. Mara treats her staff well and they love her. With Egyptian tourism quiet, this is a great time to go and everyone is so welcoming. I just had such a wonderful time. All due to Mara House. A very special place.


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