Tag: Saudi Arabia HotelsView All Tags
The Nobu Hotel Las Vegas must be a success because chef Nobu Matsuhisa is doing it again. This time in Riyadh, Saudia Arabia.
The Nobu Riyadh, on King Fahed Road in the Al Anoud Tower 2, will open sometime later this year yet has already has joined the Leading Hotels of the World as a provisional member. The hotel will get full membership upon opening.
The Nobu Hotel Riyadh will be much the same as its Vegas counterpart with interiors by David Rockwell, toiletries by Natura Bisse and high-tech amenities including complimentary WiFi. Downstairs there will be a Nobu restaurant, a Zan patisserie and tea shop and a Marketplace which will be an all-day dining spot with a "theatrical buffet experience between guest, kitchen and chef." The hotel will also have its own spa, Abariz, available only to hotel guests featuring a fitness center, just two treatment rooms, some additional facilities for men (not women) and a hair salon.
The hotel has a website but no definitive opening date and thus, no way to make a reservation just yet. (We checked the LHW site and Nobu Riyadh is not listed there yet.) They keep saying 2013 but there's a chance it could open early next year. Still, have your chopsticks at the ready.
[Photo: Nobu Hotel Facebook]
We finally got caught up on our New Yorkers last night and found an interesting bit on the The Makkah Clock Royal Tower, a Fairmont Hotel in a captivating piece about one man's hajj to Mecca (also spelled Makkah) in Saudi Arabia.
The author, Basharat Peer, writes:
At the Fairmont Mecca Clock Royal Tower, where the minimum stay during the hajj is fourteen days, the hotel executive's business cards say "The Destination for a Divine Stay."
The rooms are graded in three tiers those with a view of the Kaaba; those overlooking the Grand Mosque: and those looking onto the holy city. They are all fitted with speakers that relay calls to prayer and sermons from the Grand Mosque.
A double room with a view of the Kaaba ranges from eleven hundred dollars to forty-five hundred dollars a night.
Yes, that’s the hotel, dwarfing the holy city
Ever wanted to make a pilgrimage but been put off by the lack of decent accommodation in the area? Yes? Why, then you might be interested in the news that Raffles has just opened a hotel in the holiest city on earth for Muslims: Mecca. And they’ve done it just in time for Ramadam, which ends on 9 September.
The Raffles Makkah Palace is built in the humungous, seven tower Abraj Al Bait complex that dwarfs the entire city – including the Masjid Al Haram (the Grand Mosque), which is directly beside it.
Not only is it in a prime position, but it’s the first Raffles hotel in Saudi Arabia. The hotel is dubbing itself a “residential sanctuary”, whose 213 suites all have views of the Grand Mosque and the Kaaba, and come complete with butlers providing “heartfelt service” 24/7. There’s even a coffee sommelier. Yes, you read that correctly.
The Park Hyatt group have just added a new hotel in Saudi Arabia, with the Park Hyatt Jeddah opening up for business. As well as a five-star hotel there are also a Red Sea marina, club and spa in the complex so it sounds like a good vacation hotel, but they're also looking to get business travelers with fancy meeting facilities and a location close to Jeddah's financial district.
Creating this resort involved reclaiming land from the Red Sea, but Park Hyatt promises that they made sure to "retain the delicate surrounding marine life", and we sure hope that's true. Of course, the result is that the place has great views over the Red Sea and also to the famous King Fahd fountain which sprays water 1,000 feet into the air.
Park Hyatt Jeddah has 142 rooms, many of which overlook the Red Sea, and they all have 42" flat screen TVs, broadband internet and rain showers. They're not advertising any opening specials but rack rates start from 1650 riyal ($440) a night for the smallest rooms, with the huge royal suite going for 15,350 riyal (over $4,000). In other words, there are no budget nights to be had at the Park Hyatt Jeddah, but you're almost guaranteed a Red Sea view.
The Raffles group is still planning to open another exclusive-sounding hotel, and it's going to be in the holiest Islamic city of them all. The Raffles Makkah Palace is due to be opened in November 2009.
If you're on a pilgrimage, this is the ultimate in luxury stopovers: Apparently the Raffles will be just a three minute walk from the Kaaba within the Al Masjid al Haram, the spot where everyone will be headed.
The hotel itself will occupy the 11th to 26th floors of the Abraj Al Bait Complex, and is slated to include 198 suites. Something that impresses us no end is that there'll be an average of three staffers per suite and 24-hour butler service, so finding refreshments after a wearying pilgrimage will be no problem at all.
On the culinary front, the Raffles Makkah Palace has a couple more ways to impress us. There'll be a dedicated chocolate room in the restaurant with pralines and truffles made to order, as well as an icecreamery offering personalized ice cream creations. Whatever chocolate and ice cream you want? Talk about religious experiences.
For a country that goes to such great lengths to segregate unrelated men and women, it took Saudi Arabia a long time to hit on the idea of women-only hotels.
Reuter's reports that the rooms, which start at $93 a night, are "delicately adorned" with incense candles, rose-red fabrics and bas-reliefs of cherubs. What's more, every person employed by the hotel, right down to the bellhop, is a woman, allowing for those of the female persuasion to pamper themselves away from "the accusing eyes of a male-dominated society."
Oddly, mostly male journalists attended the hotel's inauguration by seven princes, leaving one female journo in attendance to tell Reuters, "You know what they're saying about this place..."
"...That it's a hotel for lesbians."