IHG Hotels and Resorts has signed a management agreement with The King Abdullah Financial District Management and Development Company (KAFD DMC), a subsidiary of Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund (PIF), to bring the first Kimpton hotel in the region to Saudi Arabia.

Set to open in Riyadh by June 2024, the 212-key Kimpton Riyadh will join the portfolio of existing Kimpton properties worldwide in countries including the US, France and Scotland.

Kimpton Riyadh will be a new-build property in the King Abdullah Financial District (KAFD), Saudi Arabia’s business and lifestyle destination which is home to 1.6 million sqm of office space, venues and luxury residences.

The upcoming hotel will feature several meeting spaces and banquet areas. It will also offer five F&B options including an all-day dining restaurant, a specialty restaurant, a lobby lounge, a lobby living room café and a pool bar with mezzanine seating. Kimpton Riyadh will also host an outdoor amphitheater terrace, health club, as well as an outdoor swimming pool.

“We have identified a trend towards blended travel, with those travelling for work or business also seeking a lifestyle element to their stay. As we debut Kimpton Hotels in the region, we are confident that this luxury lifestyle offering can meet that requirement and we are looking forward to expanding further into the region in the coming years,” said Haitham Mattar, managing director of IHG Hotels and Resorts for India, the Middle East and Africa.

KAFD, the location of the new hotel, is reportedly the largest LEED certified mixed-use financial district in the world.

Gautam Sashittal, chief executive officer at KAFD DMC, said, “Saudi Arabia is one of the few countries in the world that saw a rise in tourism investment and expenditure during the Covid-19 pandemic with domestic tourism increasing by 33.6 per cent and over SAR80 billion spent by tourists. Now, as the kingdom cements its presence on the world stage as a business and leisure destination, these numbers will be dwarfed.”

IHG currently operates 37 hotels across five brands in Saudi Arabia, including: InterContinental, Crowne Plaza, Holiday Inn, Staybridge Suites, and voco, with 31 hotels in the development pipeline set to open within the next three to five years.

In March, IHG Hotels and Resorts signed a management agreement with Jurmaz Hotels Company to bring a new voco hotel to Saudi Arabia’s capital city of Riyadh. The 246-key voco Hotel and Suites Riyadh North is scheduled to host its first guests in 2026. The 29-floor hotel will be located around 1.5km from King Abdullah Financial District and a 30-minute drive from King Khalid International airport.

Also in March, IHG Hotels and Resorts announced the signing of a management agreement with Mohammed Bin Salman Nonprofit City located in Riyadh for a new Hotel Indigo property. Set to open in 2025, construction has already commenced on the Hotel Indigo Mohammed Bin Salman Nonprofit City Riyadh. The new-build Hotel Indigo will feature 234 guestrooms and suites, as well as 138 serviced apartments.