Future Hospitality Summit Highlights Yanbu as Premiere Tourist Destination

Saudi 1 - image courtesy of SPA
image courtesy of SPA
Written by Linda Hohnholz

An agreement signed at the 2024 Future Hospitality Summit (FHS) in Saudi Arabia is set to transform the city of Yanbu into a premier tourist destination by introducing 4 innovative projects along the waterfront.

ASFAR, the Saudi tourism investment company wholly owned by the Public Investment Fund, announced yesterday the signing of the investment agreements between Baheej, a joint venture between ASFAR and the Tamimi-AWN Alliance, and the Royal Commission for Yanbu.

This strategic partnership was officially unveiled at a signing ceremony on the sidelines of the 2024 Future Hospitality Summit (FHS) in Saudi Arabia. The signing was attended by the President of the Royal Commission for Jubail & Yanbu Eng. Khalid bin Mohammed Al-Salem, CEO of the Royal Commission for Yanbu Eng. Abdulhadi Al-Juhani, CEO of ASFAR Dr. Fahad Bin Mushayt, and CEO of Baheej Norah Al-Tamimi.

The plans will be overseen by Baheej, whose primary objective is to develop, manage, and ensure the successful implementation of these promising projects, which will encompass restaurants and beachfront facilities, a luxurious resort, a premium hotel, a visitor services center featuring a diving academy, and a marina.

Al-Juhani said: “The collaboration we have entered into underscores the importance of partnering with the private sector to bolster the tourism industry. We are very pleased to be part of this strategic alliance, which is poised to significantly enhance the growth and development of Yanbu’s tourism sector. This partnership will not only elevate tourism offerings and facilities in Yanbu but also contribute to the overall progress and diversification of tourism opportunities nationwide, particularly in the Red Sea region.”

Mushayt stated: “We are excited to kickstart this partnership with the goal of launching and implementing unique projects in this strategically important area along the Red Sea. These endeavours will raise the standards of hospitality and entertainment services in the region, providing exceptional accommodation, amenities, and world-class entertainment offerings. We are proud to entrust this project to our subsidiary, Baheej, which will strive to develop groundbreaking concepts that meet international tourism benchmarks.”

“The collaboration with the Royal Commission for Yanbu and Baheej serves to strengthen the cooperation and integration between the entities, paving the way for the expansion and enhancement of various tourist facilities. Yanbu Governorate stands out as one of the most promising tourist destinations in Saudi Arabia, boasting a rich historical heritage, natural beauty, and significant archaeological and historical sites that present ample opportunities for substantial tourism from local, Gulf and international sources,” he added.

Saudi 2 image courtesy of SPA | eTurboNews | eTN

Mushayt emphasized that Yanbu Governorate holds significant economic and touristic importance within the framework of the Saudi Vision 2030 initiatives along the Red Sea Coast.

Al-Tamimi commented: “We are excited to spearhead the development of the four projects and eagerly anticipate their upcoming launch, which will elevate the Yanbu industrial coastline into a captivating tourist destination drawing visitors from far and wide. This partnership is a significant leap forward in realizing Vision 2030’s ambitious goals to drive economic diversification and bolster the Kingdom’s standing on the global tourism stage. With unique tourism potential inherent in Yanbu Governorate, we take pride in our contribution to catalyzing a transformative shift in Yanbu’s tourism sector through these innovative and multifaceted projects.”

The alliance between ASFAR and the Royal Commission for Jubail and Yanbu will ensure the Kingdom’s Vision is brought to life, particularly its aim to welcome 150 million visitors by the year 2030, by promoting sustainable development and fostering innovation within the tourism sector.

The Ministry of Tourism is participating in the ongoing Future Hospitality Summit here, which concludes today on May 1. This key industry event brings together leading hospitality investors and decision-makers to discuss hotel development, sustainability, innovation, and entrepreneurship in the sector.

The ministry has a dedicated pavilion at the accompanying exhibition to showcase its Hospitality Investment Enablers initiative, a key part of the wider Tourism Investment Enabler Program. This program identifies promising investment opportunities and provides investors with the necessary support.

Saudi 3 image courtesy of SPA | eTurboNews | eTN

The Hospitality Investment Enablers initiative aims to achieve several key goals aligned with the National Tourism Strategy. These include attracting SAR42.3 billion in new investments across the Kingdom’s destinations, contributing SAR16.4 billion to GDP, creating 120,000 jobs, and increasing hotel room capacity by 42,000. Ultimately, this initiative seeks to solidify Saudi Arabia’s position as a leading tourist destination.

During a panel discussion on Vision 2030-aligned investment opportunities in the Kingdom’s hospitality sector, Tourism Deputy Minister for Investment Attraction Mahmoud Abdulhadi highlighted the promising growth prospects of the hospitality industry.

He detailed the significant incentives and support offered by the ministry through various programs and initiatives, which are designed to attract investors and their capital to this flourishing sector.

About the author

Linda Hohnholz

Editor in chief for eTurboNews based in the eTN HQ.

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