The ultimate culture vulture guide to London

If you’re heading to London this summer, check out our guide. (Shutterstock)
Updated 24 July 2018
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The ultimate culture vulture guide to London

LONDON: Here, we take a look at six cultural things to do the city that is loved by visitors from across the Gulf – it can only be London.

London Arabia Art & Fashion Week
Kicking off on Aug. 1, the event celebrates Arab culture and gives you the incredible chance to view the astonishing pieces of fashion and artwork originating from the Arab world across various spots in London, including the Jumeirah Carlton Tower Hotel and Harvey Nichols.

See Westminster Abbey’s medieval galleries
The galleries are a medieval space that will be open for the first time in more than 700 years. Starting with a climb up Weston Tower, you will rise up 16 meters above Westminster Abbey, from where you’ll enjoy unparalleled views of the setting for British royal weddings and coronations. The galleries are open until July 31.

Check out the Royal Academy’s $73m extension
Yes, even more art and history to wander through — this is London, after all. The Royal Academy is a vast art institution near Piccadilly Circus, and it’s now grown by 70 percent. The highlight of this expansion is the opening of the vaults, filled with enormous Greco-Roman statues and jaw-droppingly high ceilings.

See the Exhibition Road Quarter at the V&A
Close to Harrods, this porcelain courtyard opened last summer — and it needs to be seen to be believed. Out of step with traditional Knightsbridge architecture, the piazza is a striking masterpiece, so blindingly white that it seems to sizzle on a hot day.

See the city by night at the Museum of London
The London Nights exhibition at the Museum of London celebrates Europe’s biggest city in a purely nocturnal light. See how Londoners have lived by night all the way from the late-19th Century through to today. The exhibition runs until Nov. 11

Get posting on the ‘Mail Rail’
London once had a secret railway line that was used exclusively by the Royal Mail to transport post between mail depots around the British capital — and it’s now open to the public. This one opened last year, but it’s so unusual that it’s getting a listing for 2018. Yes, it sounds geeky and like something your awkward uncle might rave about, but it genuinely is an extraordinary ride under this ancient metropolis.


Saudi tourism body considers funds for 6 tourism projects worth SR71 million

The funds will go toward developing a range of plans across the hospitality sector, including hotels, conference centers, infrastructure and tourist resorts. (SPA)
Updated 17 April 2019
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Saudi tourism body considers funds for 6 tourism projects worth SR71 million

  • Saudi Arabia’s vision on the tourism sector is based on its basic values and culture in the first place, followed by the economic importance and regional and international weight it enjoys

RIYADH: The Saudi Commission of Tourism and National Heritage (SCTH) has announced plans to fund 33 new tourism projects across the Kingdom, as part of a lending initiative to aid the sector in underdeveloped Saudi regions.
Abdul Majid bin Abdul Mohsen Al-Nasser, the SCTH’s director general of tourism investment, said that the initiative, in partnership with the Ministry of Finance, approved proposals for 33 projects at a cost of more than SR1,100 billion ($294 million).
Al-Nasser added that a joint committee formed by the SCTH and the ministry was also studying funding for six other projects worth an additional SR71 million.
The funds will go toward developing a range of plans across the hospitality sector, including hotels, conference centers, infrastructure and tourist resorts. The hope is that, as well as highlighting the many attractions on offer in less-heralded parts of the country, the initiative will also lead to an upswing in job creation.
Saudi Arabia’s vision on the tourism sector is based on its basic values and culture in the first place, followed by the economic importance and regional and international weight it enjoys, as well as its value-based interaction with other communities.
Earlier this month, SCTH undertook registration of 1,127 artifacts and relics that it successfully managed to restore from America, in coordination with the Saudi Foreign Ministry. Some of the items recovered date back to prehistoric times.
The director-general of archiving and protecting antiquities at SCTH, Naif Al-Qannour, said the commission had stepped up its efforts to recover national treasures from inside and outside the Kingdom.
Al-Qannour added that many of the objects had been voluntarily handed over to the Kingdom by relatives of US citizens who worked in Saudi Arabia during the 1960s.