What to know about Via Riyadh, Saudi Arabia's new hub promoted by Messi and Sofia Vergara

Modern Family actress says the luxury retail and leisure destination 'is the place to be'

Modern Family star Sofia Vergara in a promotional video for Via Riyadh
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Via Riyadh, Saudi Arabia's latest luxury shopping, hospitality and entertainment hub, will open its doors on May 11.

The space will be home to a St Regis hotel, alongside retail stores, fine-dining restaurants, cinemas and a theatre for live performances.

The destination is near the Diplomatic Quarter and was constructed in 20 months.

The opening week will feature live shows and the theatre will be inaugurated by renowned Saudi singer Abdul Majeed Abdullah on May 18.

Earlier this week, football star Lionel Messi was also seen visiting Via Riyadh with his family while on a trip to the kingdom. Last year, Saudi Arabia’s Ministry of Tourism said the country had chosen the Paris Saint-Germain star to be the face of the kingdom's tourism programme.

Turki Al-Sheikh, head of Saudi Arabia's General Entertainment Authority, said Via Riyadh will be one of the finest entertainment destinations in the capital.

A video promotion featuring Modern Family star Sofia Vergara was unveiled ahead of the opening.

In it, the Colombian actress is driven in a Bentley to Via Riyadh after an airline loses her luggage. "Guess what? I'm going to have to go shopping," she says. She is then welcomed at the luxury property and goes on to experience other elements of Via Riyadh — such as its dining and theatres — calling it the "place to be".

The architecture of Via Riyadh is built in the Salmani style based on King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud's six core values, authenticity, human-centricity, livability, continuity, innovation and sustainability; and it is built with a mix of traditional and modern architecture.

There is an emphasis on green spaces, as Saudi Arabia moves towards a more sustainable future as part of Vision 2030, outlined by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.

Updated: May 04, 2023, 4:13 AM