Source: Arab News
Dec 12, 2017
The Red Sea project
The Red Sea project will be a luxury resort destination situated across the islands of alagoon and steeped in nature and culture. It will set new standards for sustainabledevelopment and bring about the next generation of luxury travel to put Saudi Arabiaon the international tourism map.
Location and resources
The Red Sea project is located along the Western coast of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia,between the cities of Umluj and Al Wajh. The area is characterized by its year-roundtemperate climate, with average summer temperatures reaching up to 31°C.
Envisioned as an exquisite luxury resort destination established across 50 untouchednatural islands in a lagoon that stretches along 200 kilometers of stunning coastline,
The Red Sea will be situated on the site of one of the world’s last natural hiddentreasures.
The project will form an archipelago that is home to environmentally protected coralreefs, mangroves, and several endangered marine species, including the hawksbill seaturtle. It also boasts dormant volcanoes, the most recently active of which has arecorded history of activity dating back to the 17th century AD. In addition, The Red
Sea project’s nature reserve is inhabited by rare wildlife including Arabian leopards,
Arabian wolves, Arabian wildcats, and falcons.
Tourists will also be able to visit the ancient ruins at Mada’in Saleh, which date backthousands of years, and are renowned for their beauty and historical significance. It isalso the first heritage location in Saudi Arabia to be classified as UNESCO WorldHeritage site.
The Red Sea will serve as a center of the wellness movement and a showcase for ahealthy, engaged, and vibrant society. Visitors to The Red Sea resort will enjoy plentyof sunshine, pristine white sandy beaches, and for the more adventurous, various eco,historical, and cultural excursions, both on land and in the sea.
The resort will also offer popular activities including water sports – with The Red Seafamed for being one of the world’s best dive sites. In addition to extreme sports –parachuting, trekking, and rock climbing – as well as culturally enriching visits to theArab Heritage Museum and the ArcheologyCenter.
Targeting local, regional, and international tourists, The Red Sea project is projected towelcome one million visitors per annum by 2035, with the yearly number of visitorscapped in order to protect the ecosystem and preserve the area’s natural habitat. Toachieve this ambitious goal, the newly mapped semi-autonomous area will be governedby laws on par with international standards that will include no visa requirements formost nationalities. In addition, the regulatory framework of this project will set newstandards for sustainable development and environmental protection, to ensure theconservation of the Kingdom’s natural environment in accordance with the higheststandards of ecological best practice.
The initial groundbreaking of The Red Sea project is expected in the third quarter of
- Completion of phase one of the project is anticipated by the last quarter of 2022,including the development of hotels and luxury residential units, as well as all logisticalinfrastructure – including air, land, and sea transport hubs.
With tourism representing the second most important sector in Saudi Arabia, The RedSea will spearhead the diversification of the Kingdom’s leisure industry. As outlined inVision 2030, the project also aims to diversify the Kingdom’s tourism offerings to createa year-round hospitality sector, while promoting cultural conservation and economicstimulation through local and international investments and spending. This is projectedto achieve a contribution of SAR 15 billion per annum to the Kingdom’s GDP, in additionto creating up to 35,000 jobs, once it is up and running.