Arab News, Tuesday, Jan 10, 2023 | Jamadi Al Thani 17, 1444
Saudi crown prince adds $50bn Diriyah project to PIF’s portfolio
Saudi Arabia’s sovereign wealth fund on Monday assumed control of the ambitious
$50 billion development at Diriyah, the historic UNESCO World Heritage Site on
the outskirts of Riyadh.
Diriyah becomes the Public Investment Fund’s fifth
giga-project, alongside the futuristic NEOM city; the Red Sea Global tourism
development on the west coast; Qiddiya, the entertainment and lifestyle
destination 40km from the Saudi capital; and ROSHN, the Kingdom’s largest
residential property developer.
Giga-projects are a key pillar of the Public
Investment Fund’s strategy to diversify the Saudi economy by launching new
sectors, promoting public-private partnerships, and boosting investment and
The Diriyah development will feature luxury hotels
and restaurants built in traditional Najdi architectural style, alongside
conservation areas and cultural venues.
Curved along the outskirts of Riyadh, and formed
on an oasis that split from the banks of Wadi Hanifa, Diriyah’s mud-brick walls
once housed a thriving desert city that was a powerhouse of culture and
At-Turaif district, with its famous citadel, was
the original seat of power of the Kingdom’s Al-Saud family. In 1727, the city
was named the country’s capital, laying the foundations for what would later
become a unified Saudi Arabia.
“These cultural and historical aspects position
Diriyah as an unrivaled destination of global significance where the
authenticity of Saudi heritage can be celebrated, revealing the historic origins
of modern Saudi Arabia,” a spokesman said.
“Tourists will have the opportunity to explore and
get to know Saudi Arabia’s history and its culture at the city’s museums and
The development of Diriyah was previously the responsibility of the Diriyah Gate
Development Authority, which will continue in a supervisory and regulatory role
role in maintaining the heritage and history of Diriyah.