– Saudi Arabia joins forces with France to welcome Villa Hegra to AlUla

– Cultural complex to mark the arrival of the “French villa” model in the Middle East

РAgreements with Ferrandi Paris, Dassault Syst̬mes and RATP DeV Saudi Arabia to make AlUla a global smart city for residents and visitors

Jeddah. Saudi Arabia, December 5, 2021 / CNW / – The Royal Commission for AlUla (RCU) today announced the signing of four strategic agreements, including one for Villa Hegra, bringing the iconic “French villa” model to the Middle East.

Villa Hegra Signature by His Royal Highness Prince Badr bin Farhan Al Saud, Governor of the Royal Commission for AlUla and HE Jean-Yves Le Drian, Minister for Europe and Foreign Affairs

The signings coincided with Saturday’s official visit to Jeddah by the French president Emmanuel Macron and his meeting with His Royal Highness the Prince Mohammad bin Salman bin Abdulaziz Al-Saud, Crown Prince and Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Royal Commission for AlUla County.

The partnerships are part of RCU’s integrated development program aimed at transforming AlUla into a global cultural and natural heritage destination and gateway city offering an exceptional quality of life to residents and visitors.

Villa Hegra in AlUla will be a unique place where artists, writers and painters meet, representing a continuation of AlUla’s heritage as a hub of commercial and cultural exchanges. It will be respectful of the environment and history, and inclusive of local populations. Currently there are 11 iterations of the “Villa” in the world, with seven in France and four abroad from Mexico To Rome, each showcasing the best of French and global culture.

The Villa Hegra of 15,100 m² will be a cluster of entities including the exclusive AlUla International college Tourism and Hospitality, a 6,600 m² lifestyle residence-hotel, a cultural center, an artistic residence and a social club.

The signing of the agreements for Villa Hegra was HH Prince Badr ben Farhan Al Saoud, governor of the royal commission for AlUla and SE Jean-Yves Le Drian, Minister of Europe and Foreign Affairs.

“The relation between France and Saudi Arabia is based on mutual recognition of the importance of cultural exchange and development. Since signing our first agreements in 2018, we have worked together to create a new model of cultural diplomacy – one that puts the sharing of knowledge, expertise and resources at the forefront and opens up new opportunities for the community. local. The arrival of Villa Hegra in AlUla adds another layer to AlUla’s legacy as a meeting place of the world, ”said Amr AlMadani, Director General of the Royal Commission for AlUla.

RCU has also signed an exclusive agreement with the Institut Ferrandi Paris des Arts Culinaires et de l’Hôtellerie to jointly create an AlUla under the Ferrandi brand. International college tourism and hospitality industry to accelerate the long-term vision of establishing AlUla as a regional hub of hospitality, tourism and the culinary arts.

Signed by Amr AlMadani, Director General of the Royal Commission for AlUla, and Bruno de Monte, CEO of Ferrandi, the exclusive partnership will contribute to AlUla’s strategy to become the leading knowledge and training center for tourism, hospitality and the culinary arts in the Kingdom. By partnering with world-class institutions, it aims to attract and develop international and local talent into industry professionals to lead the growth of the sector at AlUla.

In addition to Villa Hegra and the Institut d’art culinaire et hôtelier Ferrandi Paris, RCU has also signed agreements with Dassault Systèmes and RATP DeV Saudi Arabia, focused on creating a city ready for the future – offering citizens, residents and tourists an exceptional quality of life. by streamlining and digitizing processes and ensuring public transport and mobility operations.

With Dassault Systèmes, RCU has partnered to create a digital twin – a digital copy of AlUla that will function as an important tool for planning, development, municipal operations, community and investors, citizens and investors. . The agreement builds on RCU’s efforts to develop an integrated geospatial database.

Likewise, the partnership with RATP DeV Saudi Arabia builds on the organization’s 120 years of transport activity in developing a world-class public transport system at AlUla. The partnership will provide RCU with access to the latest innovations in mobility and best practices in operations and mobility solutions, including autonomous vehicles, electric vehicles and hybrid vehicles that meet the needs of residents and communities. tourists.

“AlUla is an experimental laboratory for the future of tourism. By partnering with leading entities such as the Institute of Culinary Arts and Hospitality Ferrandi Paris, Dassault Systèmes and RATP DeV Saudi Arabia, we can access their vast stock of knowledge, industrial know-how as well as research and innovation to build a destination that is not only a cultural and artistic paradise and a benchmark for sustainable development, but an economic engine for the industry ”, added Amr AlMadani, Director General of the Royal Commission for AlUla.

The agreements are an extension of the close cooperation between the two nations in various sectors in AlUla following the signing of an intergovernmental agreement to develop new cultural, educational and artistic assets in AlUla on April 10, 2018. The agreement led to a strong French role at AlUla, in fields ranging from archeology to smart city infrastructure to hospitality, with the architect Jean Nouvel the intention to build a luxury resort that will be carved out of the sandstone rocks of AlUla, thus reviving the traditional masonry of the ancient Nabataean masons of the region.

On the sidelines of the presidential visit, RCU also participated in a Franco-Saudi investment forum in Jeddah explore other opportunities for mutual benefit.

To sign images, please click here.

For media inquiries, please contact the RCU Public Relations team at [email protected]

Note to editors:

It’s still AlUla / not Al-Ula

About the Royal Commission for AlUla

The Royal Commission for AlUla (RCU) was established by Royal Decree in july 2017 preserve and develop AlUla, a region of outstanding natural and cultural importance in the northwest Saudi Arabia. RCU’s long-term plan describes a responsible, sustainable and sensitive approach to urban and economic development, which preserves the region’s natural and historical heritage, while making AlUla a desirable place to live, work and visit. This encompasses a wide range of initiatives in the fields of archeology, tourism, culture, education and the arts, reflecting a commitment to meet the priorities of economic diversification, empowerment of local communities and preservation of the heritage of Kingdom of Saudi Arabia Vision 2030 program.

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SOURCE The Royal Commission for AlUla (RCU)

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