RIYADH: Snow parks, penguins and ice-skating rinks are common winter attractions in cities with the weather to match — but Riyadh?
Still, there’s a first time for everything, and Riyadh Season is giving the Saudi capital the opportunity to prove it with the opening on Oct. 20 of Winter Wonderland.
More than 300 trailers have been shipped from all over Europe to Riyadh for the English-style winter carnival, and more than 250 workers are busy setting it up in one of Riyadh’s busiest areas.
The site, against the stunning backdrop of the King Abdullah Financial District skyscrapers, will accommodate up to 40,000 visitors a day. “It is challenging, but it is wonderful to be here,” events director Edward Mellors told Arab News. “We are really enjoying it. It’s nice to be involved in bringing such a big project to a country like this.”
As well as the snow park, the ice rink and the penguins, attractions include a Marvel excursion, with Iron Man and other superheroes from the franchise.
“We have been sourcing these rides from all over the world, getting them together and making lots of deals, getting them on ships,” said Mellors. “I can’t think of any one challenge that has been the biggest, but with all of them put together, it has been a mountain.”