Le Cordon Bleu to open culinary institute in Riyadh

The French institute will include a curriculum for Saudi cuisine and provide opportunities for students to enrol in foreign exchange programmes

LONDON, ENGLAND - MARCH 27:  Chefs prepare ahead of the announcement of the winner of the UK's most prestigious hospitality scholarship, the Le Cordon Bleu UK Scholarship Award 2013, receiving the award from chef Pierre Koffmann at a reception at Le Cordon Bleu's Centre of Excellence in London's Bloomsbury Square.  Zoe McReynolds beat entrants from all over the UK to scoop the £30,000 prize, and will now study the world-renowned Le Grand Diplome at Le Cordon Bleu before enjoying an apprenticeship with Koffmann at Le Cordon Bleu on March 27, 2013 in London, England.  (Photo by Ben A. Pruchnie/Getty Images For Le Cordon Bleu)
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Le Cordon Bleu, the prestigious French hospitality institution, is set to launch in Saudi Arabia.

On Sunday, the Saudi Culinary Arts Authority signed a memorandum of understanding with Le Cordon Bleu to establish an educational institute in the city of Riyadh.

The agreement, which was signed by Culinary Arts Authority chief executive Mayada Badr and Le Cordon Bleu president Andre Cointreau, aims to provide advanced academic programmes in the culinary and hospitality sector using the international institute's resources and expertise.

The Culinary Arts Authority signing agreement with Le Codon Bleu International. SPA
The Culinary Arts Authority signing the agreement with Le Cordon Bleu International. SPA

Students can expect training courses in agriculture and nutrition, and an integrated curriculum for Saudi cuisine from the new institute. No launch date was confirmed at the time of writing.

Through the initiative, the Culinary Arts Authority aims to support and provide guidance for Saudi chefs and those wishing to start businesses or restaurants.

It will also provide the opportunity for Saudi students in enrol in exchange programmes at Le Cordon Bleu schools located outside the kingdom, and for international students to attend the institute within Saudi Arabia.

The Saudi Press Agency reported: "The memorandum of understanding comes as part of the efforts made by the authority to raise the efficiency of the culinary arts sector in the kingdom, by providing international expertise to be accessible to citizens practicing culinary arts, and to attract the most prestigious culinary and hospitality academies and institutes to the kingdom."

Le Cordon Bleu has a presence in Europe, America, Australia and the Middle East. It has campuses in Beirut, Istanbul, Shanghai, Gurgaon in India and Manila, among others. This will be its first institute in Saudi Arabia.