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Saudi King Salman to Launch Qiddiya Project on Wednesday

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King Salman bin Abdulaziz will patronize the al-Qiddiya project on Wednesday. (Khalid al-Khamis)

Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman bin Abdulaziz will inaugurate on Wednesday al-Qiddiya project, the new entertainment, sports and cultural destination in Saudi Arabia, west of Riyadh.

The laying of the foundation stone will be attended by a host of local and international officials and major investors and representatives of the regional and international companies, marking the launch of the project's formal infrastructure.

The first phase of the 334 km project will be completed by 2022.

Visitors will have access to recreational and educational facilities across six designed clusters: Theme Parks; Wheels and Wings; Scenic and Animal Encounters; Water and Snow; Sports; Events, Culture and Education.

In a statement to Saudi Press Agency (SPA), Secretary General of the Foundation Council of Qiddiya Project of the Public Investment Fund (PIF) Fahd Tounsi said the inauguration of this vital project is a real translation of the aspirations of the Saudi leadership and its relentless efforts to develop mega projects.

He added that such projects contribute effectively to achieve many direct and indirect economic returns, and advance sustainable development for the benefit of Saudi Arabia in accordance with the sectors identified by Vision 2030.

"About two-thirds of the Kingdom's population is under the age of 35. There is a great need for Qiddiya Project to provide them with entertainment. The project will save about $30 billion, which Saudis spend on tourism and recreation abroad.”

“The saved funds will be used to develop the domestic economy and create new job opportunities for the Saudi youth," he was quoted by SPA.

Chief Executive of Qiddiya Michael Reininger stated: "We are delighted to be a key contributor to boost the Kingdom's economic development and investment, not only to the entertainment industry but also to projects that will develop the capabilities of the Saudi youth."

https://aawsat.com/english/home/article/1247571/saudi-king-salman-launch-qiddiya-project-wednesday
 

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Vox Cinemas to Operate Over 600 Screens in Saudi Arabia

The region's most innovative and now largest cinema operator, Vox Cinema, announced that it has applied and obtained a license to run theaters in Saudi Arabia, announcing that it will be opening its first screen in the Saudi capital Riyadh in the next few days.

Owned by the UAE-based Al-Futtaim Group, Vox Cinemas will invest about 2 billion riyals ($ 533 million) in Saudi Arabia over the next five years, opening and operating a total of 600 screenings in several shopping centers, including Riyadh Park and City Centre Ishbiliyah, Riyadh.

According to a statement by Vox Cinemas, Majid Al Futtaim will be the exclusive distributor of 20th Century Fox content to all Saudi cinemas.

Saudi Media Minister Dr. Awwad Al-Awwad, opened the first cinema screening in Saudi Arabia on Thursday evening, operated by the world's largest cinema operator and developer AMC Theatres, after nearly 35 years of complete cinema shutdown in the kingdom.

Cinema-goers can now catch “Black Panther” as of Friday after online ticket sales are open, CEO of AMC Theatres Adam Aron told Asharq Al-Awsat.

With the dashing return of cinema to Saudi Arabia, AMC Cinemas has announced a partnership with Noon.com to sell tickets online for initial screenings of “Black Panther,” the Marvel Studios production of the immensely popular comic book that marks the return theaters to the Kingdom on April 20.

There are two other halls that will open in the next three weeks, with an extra 450 seats, AMC screens will accommodate about 1,000 people.

On the other hand, three more showrooms will be opened at the King Abdullah Financial Center in the third quarter of 2018, marking the start of a partnership that could result in the opening of 40 or more AMC-run movie theaters in the Kingdom over the next five years.

About 350 cinemas, with more than 2,500 displays in the Kingdom, are planned by 2030.

The leisure and development company was established earlier this year by the Public Investment Fund to play an active role in the various entertainment sectors, as well as attracting strategic partnerships to build the business system in the sector in Saudi Arabia.

Saudi Arabia, with a population of 32 million, a majority of which are under 30, is expected to be the largest market in the region for movie spectators. This decision is part of the social and economic transformation program in the Kingdom in accordance with Vision 2030 led by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.

https://aawsat.com/english/home/article/1243816/vox-cinemas-operate-over-600-screens-saudi-arabia
 

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