Integrating sustainability, a cultural connection, and ensuring locals benefit from AlUla’s progress, four new hotels in collaboration with global hospitality stalwarts are on the way, promising breathtaking interiors and visuals, world-class comforts and a chance to feel the beating heart of this amazing city.
Studded across the desert sands of AlUla, the ancient city’s hotels and resorts each tell incredibly unique stories underpinned by a commitment to offering guests an exceptional hospitality experience. Whether it’s the serene Habitas AlUla resort, the sanctuary that is Banyan Tree AlUla or the affordable luxury of cloud7 Residences, all the properties within the untouched Saudi Arabian city offer rich and varied experiences that strive to satiate every palate and interest.
Here’s your ultimate guide to what’s to come…
AZULIK AlUla Resort is a breathtaking eco-luxury property. Slated to launch in 2027 in the Nabataean Horizon District of the Journey Through Time masterplan, the property will nestle amongst sandstone canyons with an ideal location near the AlMutadil Equestrian Village development and Wadi AlFann, an ancient valley that will soon be home to a world-class large-scale outdoor sculpture park.
What can guests expect? The resort will comprise 76 luxury villas of six varieties, a spa, VIP club, welcome lounges, all-day dining, and AZULIK's signature museum, SFER IK. With flowing designs inspired by the surrounding sandstone cliffs, the resort’s undulating exteriors will utilise natural materials and woven fibres...
What’s special about it? Creating a connection with AlUla’s heritage and the area’s ecology, AZULIK AlUla Resort will protect and incorporate nearby ancient rock art inscriptions and utilise a natural system of existing waterways to feed irrigation and safeguard against floods. No private vehicle traffic will be allowed on-property; instead, an all-electric mobility system will be provided, along with horse and camel routes, and hiking trails for guests to enjoy the surroundings.
Operated by Mexican luxury brand AZULIK and designed by Roth Architecture, the resort will also provide socioeconomic benefits for the AlUla community. Once fully operational, AZULIK AlUla Resort will create more than 300 new jobs.
The Chedi Hegra will be the first hotel to be located in Saudi Arabia’s first UNESCO World Heritage Site of Hegra. Set to welcome its inaugural guests by Q4 2023, the heritage boutique hotel will offer 35 guest rooms, each establishing a distinct connection to Hegra’s monumental landscape.
What can guests expect? Guests will park their vehicles at the entrance and be escorted into the hotel premises on electric vehicles. They will find three fine-dining restaurants, a café, and a full-service spa and pool, with many of the buildings connected by an overhead art canopy that makes use of natural wind and light.
What’s special about it? The boutique hotel is being built directly into several of Hegra’s existing structures, including an old railway station and surrounding buildings such as Hegra Fort. Structural and exterior walls, some with historical mud-brick construction, are being preserved and integrated with modern architecture. The vast majority of the Hegra UNESCO World Heritage Site will remain untouched.
Managed by the Singapore-based company GHM, The Chedi Hegra will use local construction materials and work with local businesses and labour as much as possible. The hotel is expected to create at least 120 jobs once it is fully operational.
With an opening slated for 2024, the upscale eco-lodge Dar Tantora by The House Hotel is currently under construction in AlUla Old Town. AlUla is developing 30 guest rooms by restoring and repurposing historical mud-brick buildings using modern engineering in tandem with traditional materials and techniques.
What can guests expect? Amenities for guests will include a pool and spa, restaurant and café. The food and beverage facilities will use exclusively local ingredients and focus on the culinary traditions of AlUla.
What’s special about it? Besides incorporating the mud-brick structures of AlUla Old Town, this eco-lodge will showcase the historic area as a vibrant cultural hub through its use of traditional décor, furniture and artistic treatments. Local artisans have also been trained to take part in the restoration effort. The House Hotel is a brand of Dublin-based Kerten Hospitality.
Sharaan Resort designed by Jean Nouvel will have 53 keys, divided amongst suites, hospitality pavilions and villas built directly into the mountains of Sharaan Nature Reserve.
What can guests expect? Built into a mountain dating back 500 million years, the resort will feature 38 suites, a spa and wellness centre, a kids club, a sports centre, all-day dining restaurant and a business centre. Additionally, a fine-dining restaurant will sit atop the mountain with panoramic views of Sharaan. Inside an adjacent mountain, the Sharaan International Summit Centre will host events and leaders from around the world. Facilities will include an auditorium, meeting rooms, majlis (sitting room), library, and a sport and leisure area. The Summit Centre will also have 13 total hospitality pavilions and two private villas will be constructed nearby.
What’s special about it? Sharaan Resort will work in harmony with its surroundings. Studies of the site have informed the design of passive strategies and natural geological heat transfer to cool the property in summer and provide warmth in winter. The project will aim for zero wastewater by using potable water only when needed and by recycling all treatable wastewater for irrigation and other purposes. A unique glass elevator will connect the resort with a geologic and artistic experience, offering views of ancient sedimentary layers and niches filled with art and engravings.