The developers behind two of Saudi Arabia's most ambitious tourism projects have evolved into a more globally focused entity.
The Red Sea Development Company (TRSDC) and Amaala, owned by the kingdom's sovereign wealth fund, the Public Investment Fund, which were developing adjacent mega projects on the country's west coast have been unified into one entity.
The combination of two companies into Red Sea Global was announced at the Future Investment Initiative in Riyadh on Tuesday.
Red Sea Global said it will create 120,000 jobs and contribute 33 billion riyals ($8.8bn) annually to Saudi Arabia’s economy from 2027 — from the Red Sea and Amaala projects alone.
Red Sea Global has more than five additional projects already at the feasibility study stage or entering the masterplan completion phase or at which construction has already started, it said.
Its expanded mandate also includes the establishment of a series of subsidiary businesses to drive an uplift in the Saudi tourism sector and associated industries, it said.
It will also be in charge of more than a dozen projects stretching across the length of the Red Sea coast of Saudi Arabia, with the potential to expand beyond the kingdom in the future.
“The announcement today marks the start of our evolution into a truly global developer that can lead the category towards a new archetype for development,” said John Pagano, chief executive of Red Sea Global.
“We are not only expanding our footprint to help create massive economic opportunities — valued at hundreds of billions worth of riyals — for the people of Saudi Arabia. We also want to set new global standards in development and inspire the industry to do better.”
The Red Sea Project is set in a 28,000 square kilometre area that includes an archipelago of 92 islands, 50 dormant volcanoes, mountain ranges and sand dunes.
Its first phase will open from 2023, with 16 hotels offering 3,000 rooms, an international airport, a marina, an 18-hole championship golf course and retail and entertainment centres.
It is due for completion in 2030, with 8,000 rooms in 50 hotels and 1,000 residences. Red Sea Global said it planned for the project to be carbon-neutral upon opening.
Meanwhile, Amaala — on Saudi Arabia’s north-western coast — will border Neom and the Red Sea Project, and is another key part of the kingdom's tourism drive.
The development will add 2,500 hotel rooms and 700 private residential villas, along with a retail area featuring 200 outlets.
The first phase of the Amaala project will comprise nine hotels, delivering about 1,300 hotel rooms. It is on track for completion by mid-2024.
The overall project is due for completion in 2027, with 3,000 rooms in 25 hotels and 934 residences.
Last week, designs for the “world's first fully immersive experiential marine life centre” at the Triple Bay Marina in Amaala were unveiled.
It will house one of the world's largest man-made reefs, measuring 40 metres long and 10 metres deep, as well as augmented reality experiences and underwater tours of the Red Sea in submersible vehicles.
Amaala will be powered solely by renewable energy and will be carbon neutral upon opening, Red Sea Global said.