In an effort to transform itself into an international tourist hub, ‘The Rig’ is the latest offering by Saudi Arabia. Eager to move away from its image of petroleum-reliant economy, the kingdom looks at petroleum rigs for inspiration to develop a floating theme park.
Located in the Arabian Gulf, 40 km from land, ‘The Rig’ will comprise of a range of extreme sports, three hotels with 800 rooms and 11 restaurants. The expanse of ‘The Rig’ is blatantly visible, spanning an area of 150,000-square metres, executing multitude of hospitality offerings, adventures, and aquatic sporting experiences.
Repurposing offshore oil rigs offers sea of possibilities and an intriguing look into the prospect of pushing the limits of adaptive re-use projects. The abandoned oil platforms are industrial relics whose repurposing can offer tremendous opportunities in creating communities of post-oil era.
The project claims to ensure sustainable preservation of the vicinity, following leading global standards and practices. However, it is unclear at this time, if the project will be built on an existing offshore oil platform or that reference is just an inspiration for the newly built platform.
“THE RIG is in line with PIF’s strategy 2021-2025 to drive innovation in Saudi Arabia’s tourism and entertainment sectors, providing promising development opportunities to achieve economic diversification in line with the Saudi Vision 2030 objectives,” said the project team.
Previously, Foster + Partners had announced plans to develop Shurayrah Island in the Red Sea, being developed by The Red Sea Development Company. Dubbed Coral Bloom, it will be made up of 11 hotels on the dolphin-shaped island of Shurayrah.
The completion date for ‘The Rig’ is still unknown, but the construction is expected to begin sometime in Q2 2022. The project hopes to attract 650,000 tourists per year by 2030, creating collaboration opportunities for stakeholders from both the public and private sectors in the Kingdom and internationally.
PIF is one of the largest and most impactful sovereign wealth funds in the world, driving the economic transformation of Saudi Arabia for the benefit of its people while helping shape the future global economy. PIF is building a world-class portfolio through investments in attractive, long-term opportunities across diverse industries and asset classes internationally, while unlocking new sectors at home. PIF works alongside global strategic partners and renowned investment managers, and acts as the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia’s primary investment arm aiming toward generating long-term value for the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia in line with Vision 2030.