International Hotel Investments plc (IHI) on Friday signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Saudi Arabia’s Jeddah Central Development Company (JCDC) to explore cooperation in developing and operating assets within Jeddah Central development’s Marina district.
JCDC is a wholly owned company of the Public Investment Fund (PIF) and the master developer of the Jeddah Central development. The development is comprised of four major global landmarks, including an opera house, industrial museum, stadium, oceanarium, and coral farms, as well as 10 entertainment and tourism attractions. Its operational activities will also open the door for the local private sector to participate in developing and operating promising economic sectors, including tourism, sports, culture, and entertainment. The development contains more than 17,000 residential units and various hotel projects providing more than 2,700 keys.
IHI is the owner and operator of the Corinthia Hotels brand, and also develops and manages hotels on behalf of partner owners and investors.
The MoU establishes a framework for Corinthia Hotels and its sister company QPM Limited to develop and operate assets in its Marina district at Corinthia standards. The Marina district is part of Jeddah Central’s 9.5-kilometre waterfront on the Red Sea, featuring what has been dubbed a “world class” marina equipped for local and international boats, yachts, and superyachts. It will also serve as a gateway to the city on the Red Sea coast, creating a thriving residential marine community, including recreational facilities, retail outlets, restaurants, and cafés.
The agreement was signed by JCDC CEO and Engineer Ahmed Al-Sulaim, who said: “We are pleased with this cooperation with Corinthia, and we look forward to working with them and our other partners and customers to develop Jeddah Central to the highest international standards in terms of design, innovation and environmental sustainability.”
Corinthia Hotels was represented by Chairman Alfred Pisani and CEO Simon Naudi, as well as QPM Limited CEO Reuben Xuereb.
Commenting on the agreement, Mr Pisani said that Corinthia is “honoured” to be in partnership with JCDC to deliver the “pioneering development”. “As hoteliers and real estate developers, the Corinthia Hotel group is delighted to be bringing its expertise, brand and innovation in creating uplifting environments that will sit at the nexus of global experience and local ambition,” he added.
JCDC was established in 2019 to oversee the development and operations of the destination, with the aim to “turn the heart of Jeddah into one of the world’s largest and most alluring tourist, sporting, cultural, recreational, commercial, and residential destinations”. The development will be implemented over three phases, the first of which is set to be completed by 2027. The second phase is to be completed by 2030, while the rest of the development will take place after that year.
Corinthia Hotels is a group made of up luxury hotels, initially founded in Malta in 1962 by the Pisani family. Over the years it has grown to become a multinational investor, developer, and operator of hotels and real estate. Its portfolio includes hotels in London, Budapest, Lisbon, St Petersburg, and Malta, with developments also underway in Rome, New York, Brussels, Bucharest, Doha, Riyadh, and a new resort in Malta.
JCDC CEO and Engineer Ahmed Al-Sulaim (left) and Corinthia Hotels Chairman Alfred Pisani (right) / IHI