Makkah hotel to dwarf rivals

Updated 25 May 2015

Makkah hotel to dwarf rivals

JEDDAH: The holy city of Makkah will host the largest hotel in the world with 10,000 rooms, 70 restaurants, shopping centers and a helipad, informed sources said. The project valued at $3.5 billion will be ready in two years.
Covering an area of 686,000 square feet, Abraj Kudai will also have royal suites, prayer halls and a convention center — all in 12 separate towers. The focal point, however, will be the central dome, expected to be one of the largest and tallest in the world.
As the site of the hotel is only about a mile from the Grand Mosque, it is expected to host many of the millions of pilgrims. However, guests may need a robust bank account to book a room as the target will be high-end customers — who can afford four-star luxury in 10 towers and five-star hotels in two.
As for the architecture, the Abraj Kudai looks like a semi-futuristic, sand-colored, desert version of a 1930s Manhattan high-rise. Inside, London-based Areen Hospitality has been given the task of decorating the vast area.
But it’s no sweat off the brow of Areen Hospitality, according to Andrew Lindwood, head of design at Areen Hospitality, who told ArabianBusiness.com: “We allow for this and have the experience to respond to such a challenge, without ever losing the creative essence needed to welcome and surprise the guests expected at Abraj Kudai.”


Cirque du Soleil heads to Saudi in special one-off show

Updated 11 September 2018

Cirque du Soleil heads to Saudi in special one-off show

  • More than 80 artists will take the stage at the King Fahd International Stadium for the show
  • About 250 costumes have been specially made to respect local traditions

MONTREAL: Cirque du Soleil will stage a show in Saudi Arabia for the first time later this month, the high-flying acrobatic troupe announced Monday.
The show will take place in the Saudi capital on Sept. 23 to coincide with the country's national day, public relations director Marie-Helene Lagace told AFP.
More than 80 artists will take the stage at the King Fahd International Stadium for the show, which will also be shown on Saudi state television. Cirque says it will be one of its biggest one-off productions ever.
About 250 costumes have been specially made to respect local traditions and conform to "the artistic standards for which we are known," Lagace said.
The announcement of Cirque du Soleil's appearance in Saudi Arabia was first made in Los Angeles in April, Lagace noted. But it was unclear whether the show would go on given the diplomatic tensions.
At the behest of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, Saudi Arabia has reopened movie theaters and allowed women and men to attend some concerts together.