Story behind the king’s title

Updated 27 January 2015

Story behind the king’s title

With the pledge of allegiance this week, King Salman became the third Saudi monarch to take up the title of Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques after King Fahd and King Abdullah.
Historian Hassan Al-Basha says in his book, Positions and Titles, that Saladin was the first king to take up the title as a means to attain closeness to Allah when he was fighting the Crusaders.
The second to take up the title was Mamluk Sultan Al-Ashraf Abu Nasr Barsbay in the Mamluk era, the historian said. The first Ottoman sultan to use the title was Salim I.
King Faisal was the person who first introduced the title Khadim Al-Haramain Al-Sharifain in Saudi Arabia. When the kiswa, or covering, of the Kaaba was made during his reign, King Faisal said that he did not want his name on it. He preferred to say that the kiswa was made “during the reign of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques.”
After King Faisal’s death, King Khaled did not use the title. However, King Fahd took up the title when he became monarch in 1982.
After the death of King Fahd, King Abdullah ascended the throne in August 2005 and asked the people not to refer to him as “King of Hearts” or “King of Humanity” because Allah is the true king and humans are His slaves.

Riyadh Season Boulevard zone opens with spectacular parade

Updated 18 October 2019

Riyadh Season Boulevard zone opens with spectacular parade

  • The Riyadh parade is thought to be the biggest parade in Kingdom to date

RIYADH: More than 1,500 performers and 25 floats took part in a parade and carnival on Thursday night that officially launched Riyadh Season’s Boulevard zone. The crowds that gathered for the fun-packed event were also treated to motorcycle displays, fireworks and other surprises.

The Boulevard lit up at 9 p.m. for the start of the 90-minute event, which featured some of the international artists who will perform as part of Riyadh Season. Afterwards, the zone’s food and drink outlets, outdoor cinema and fountain shows officially opened.

The audience watched the parade, performances and displays from specially constructed stands. Food trucks offered a selection of tasty snacks, and organizers also provided prayer rooms, toilets, first-aid stations and other facilities.

In addition to the opening-night festivities, the Boulevard zone, which covers 400,000 square meters, will host a wide range of entertainment options and activities for all ages, including the outdoor cinema, restaurants, and sports, music and theatrical events. It has three main venues: The 22,000-seat Mohammed Abdu Theater, the 6,000-seat Abu Bakr Salem Theater, and the 2,000-seat Baker Al-Sheddi Theater.

The parade is just one of more than 100 events featuring local, regional and international performers taking place during the Riyadh Season festival, which continues until mid-December at 12 zones across the city: the Boulevard; the Front; Riyadh Car Show; Winter Wonderland; Riyadh Stadiums; the Diplomatic Quarter; Al-Muraba’a; Al-Malaz; Wadi Namar; Nabd Al-Riyadh; Riyadh Safari; and Riyadh Sahara. It has been organized with the support of Turki Al-Sheikh, chairman of the General Entertainment Authority and president of Riyadh Season.

The audience watched the parade from specially built stands. (Supplied)


The ambitious 2019 Saudi Seasons initiative, the first of its kind in the region, was launched in February and includes 11 local seasons covering most parts of the Kingdom. Designed to promote the fledgling Saudi entertainment sector and boost tourism, it is attracting some of the biggest names in world entertainment.

The Riyadh parade is thought to be the biggest parade in Kingdom to date. It follows a folklore parade at the Mawtni (My Nation) cultural event in Yanbu to mark Saudi National Day this year, and a parade during the Jeddah Season festivities in the city’s Obhur district.