The Saudi Crown Prince, Mohammed bin Salman, said that the country has formed a new hospitality firm, “Boutique Group,” to convert some of the country’s historical palaces into luxury tourist hotels.
The Al Hamra Palace in Jeddah, as well as Tuwaiq and the Red Palaces in Riyadh, will be turned into hotels with more than 200 rooms, as well as luxury suites and villas, under this proposal.
This is the latest step taken by the world’s top oil exporter to diversify its economic operations.
Saudi Arabia intends to promote tourism such that it contributes 10% of GDP by 2030.
The construction of the three palaces is the first step in a larger plan to deliver “high-end experiences” such as restaurants and spas.
Yasser Al-Rumayyan, Governor of the Public Investment Fund, stated that the plan’s launch confirms “the mandate of the sovereign wealth fund, which has a capital of $480 billion, to advance the capabilities of promising sectors in the Kingdom that can help push forward the diversification of the economy and contribute to the growth of non-oil GDP.”