The Red Sea Project will include 22 islands and five inland sites by the time it is completed in 2030.
It is 550 km north of Jeddah and spans 10,800 square miles (28,000 square kilometers) on Saudi Arabia’s west coast. It will be accessed via the new Red Sea International Airport which will open at the end of 2022.
The Red Sea Development Company (TRSDC), the developer behind Red Sea Project, has announced 12 of the 16 hotel brands currently under development in the first phase of this Saudi Arabian Giga Project. To read about the other projects, see: The Saudi Arabian Giga Projects: a guide
By 2030, The Red Sea Project expects to host one million visitors annually.
The Red Sea Project’s first phase of development is on track for completion by the end of 2023, with the 16 hotels offering 3,000 hotel rooms.
This will have 240 rooms on Shurayrah Island, designed by Foster and Partners
A 430 key-resort on Shurayrah Island, designed by Foster and Partners
Fairmont Red Sea
This 200-room and suite property is on Shurayrah Island and is designed by Foster and Partners. It is next to an 18-hole championship golf course, and will have seven restaurants, cafes and bars including overwater restaurants to take advantage of the views of the Red Sea and the mangroves, as well as over 2,000 square meters of meeting space, a greenhouse and a spa centre.
SLS Hotels Red Sea
This hotel will have 150 rooms including 12 suites and 15 villas, spanning an area of 800,000 square feet on Shurayrah Island, designed by Foster and Partners. The interior design will be by Lissoni + Partners.
Six Senses Southern Dunes, The Red Sea
The concept for this 76-room resort is that this area was once on a busy trading route, used by the Nabataeans to transport luxury goods like silk, incense and textiles. Along the way, they would set up camp and gather around the fire under a starlit night. In 106 CE, the Nabatean Empire was annexed by the Romans, and Red Sea routes overtook land trading routes. Nabatean cities were no longer centres of trade, and so began their decline.
The Six Senses resort combines “an architectural approach that pays homage to the Nabataean heritage and majestic desert surroundings along with the brand’s trademark wellness formula and respect for centuries past”
Created by Foster and Partners, the transfer route from the new Red Sea International Airport will take guests southeast along the coastal highway before turning east inland through serene desert mountains and narrow wadis and on to the resort.
The heart of the resort is the Oasis. Inspired by a desert flower, the canopy is a self-shading structure, blurring the lines between the natural finishes inside and the native plants and water features outside. The base structure is a modular, precast system that ensures the building only touches the ground lightly to leave most of the site undisturbed, with minimal paving to ensure the surrounding pathways remain natural and authentic. The plan for the Oasis is to gather vibrant activities and functions under one roof, including the reception, lobby lounge, boutique, meeting spaces and prayer rooms, plus a community lounge and Earth Lab. The Artisan Village will host four pods to tell the story of the region’s history and cultural heritage through arts and crafts, dance and music. The all-day dining restaurant is complemented by a chef’s table and cooking school, along with a juice bar, brew bar, and water bar.
Surrounding the Oasis is a collection of guest rooms featuring an open-plan bedroom and living area, and an outdoor terrace allowing guests to enjoy the serenity of the pristine landscape and become one with nature. Clusters of villas occupy strategic peaks to offer prime aspects over the landscape. Ranging from one to four bedrooms, the villas are inspired by the sandy dunes, with their double-layered undulating roofs creating their own unique scenery. Inside, the interiors also reflect the tones and textures of the desert, with soft furnishings drawing from the rich colours and patterns of traditional tribal dress.
A vision of its own, the spa features self-shaded water surfaces and deep cold pools creating a contrast to the hot climate. Highlights include a Holistic Anti-Aging Center, male and female grooming centres and indoor zones with wet facilities, sensory suite, outdoor treatment cabanas with a relaxation area, and a pool bar.
“The mission of early travellers was to trade, document, observe and see things in a new way,” says Six Senses Chief Executive Officer Neil Jacobs. “Six Senses Southern Dunes, The Red Sea is an invitation to explore a region that is undiscovered and untrodden. Our job here is to tread very lightly. This has been a unique opportunity to see how we can bring to life wellness and sustainability – two great values of Six Senses – in an exciting new destination that is opening to a wider global audience. It is going to receive a huge amount of interest so we’re making sure we’re working with very talented people, who are in tune with creating beautiful structures that are healthy and sustainable, to deliver this vision to our guests.”
Six Senses Southern Dunes, The Red Sea will open during the first phase of development of The Red Sea Project, which is well underway and on track to be completed by the end of 2023.
170 keys on Shurayrah Island, designed by Foster and Partners
Raffles Red Sea
This 200-room property is also on Shurayrah Island and is being designed by Foster and Partners.
The resort will offer six food and beverage venues, alongside a full spa and 565 square metres of meeting space.
210 keys on Shurayrah Island, designed by Foster and Partners
90 Keys on Ummahat Al Shayk Island, designed by Kengo Kuma and partners.
You can read an interesting interview with Kengo Kuma on the website designboom
Nujuma, a Ritz-Carlton Reserve
Slated to open in 2023, Nujuma, a Ritz-Carlton Reserve, will have feature 63 one to four bedroom water and beach villas. Plans include a spa, swimming pools, several restaurants, a shop and other leisure and entertainment offerings including a Conservation Centre. The destination is also expected to include 18 Ritz-Carlton Reserve branded residences, offering owners a one-of-a-kind living experience.
Rosewood Red Sea
Opening as part of phase one of the multi-complex The Red Sea development, the new Rosewood will have 149 rooms and suites. There will be three restaurants, two lounges, a Manor Club and a “central hub featuring authentic eateries”. Additional recreational spaces will include event pavilions and Asaya, Rosewood’s integrative well-being concept consisting of seven treatment rooms, a gym, two movement studios and a yoga pavilion.
Miraval Red Sea
Miraval is a Hyatt brand and this resort will have 180-rooms and suites including 20 villas. It will be on Shura Island, the central hub of phase one of the development.
The resort will be spread across a three million square foot (310,000 square meters) plot and is designed by Foster+Partners,. It will have ‘a “Life in Balance Spa”, which is expected to be the largest within the Red Sea destination at nearly 40,000 square feet (3,700 square meters) and 39 treatment rooms. The resort plans to offer a walking trail system, mangrove boardwalk, outdoor adventures, and several rooms for art, creative expression, music, wellness lectures, and hands-on workshops. Restaurants will include a central dining room, the signature Life in Balance Culinary Kitchen, and a marketplace offering healthy cuisine. There will be approximately 4,300 square feet (400 square meters) of meeting space “for wellness-focused, experiential activities tailored to improving connections and communication for social and corporate groups.”