RCU to build 285-hectare Equestrian Village, ‘AlMuatadil’ that will put AlUla on the world map of equestrian sports

السبت - 04 مارس 2023

Sat - 04 Mar 2023

The Royal Commission for AlUla (RCU) announces that it will build a comprehensive and sustainable Equestrian Village as part of its strategy to develop an equestrian sector for AlUla County in north-west Saudi Arabia.

The 285-hectare ‘AlMuatadil’ Equestrian Village will include two arenas for events from dressage to concerts (5,000 and 1,400 seats); grass polo, sand polo and endurance venues (respectively 600, 400 and 600 seats), as well as visitor facilities, two stable compounds (total 740 horses) and accommodation and retail facilities for event participants and workers.

These premier facilities will make AlMuatadil a leading international platform for equestrian events, and will give access for riders to the Wadi Al Fann landscape art and sculpture area.

Ziad Alsuhaibani, Head of Sports Executive Programme, The Royal Commission for AlUla said: “RCU’s equestrian sector will make AlUla a must-visit destination for any horse enthusiast and a regional reference point for equestrian activities. The equestrian sector will fulfill several objectives of Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030 and RCU’s Journey Through Time masterplan including economic diversification, expansion of the tourism sector and sustainable development.”

The sustainable, refined designs of the Equestrian Village will reflect the natural context of the region as well as its cultural and equestrian heritages. The architectural palette will draw inspiration from both the lighter earthen tones of the desert floor and the darker tones of the sandstone canyon walls.

Equine facilities will be carefully designed to ensure the welfare of the horses. The stable blocks will have an undulating roof design with plenty of sunlight to create a calm atmosphere. The training barn will include Seawalker pools, treadmills and a vibration plate. A 6,000 sqm veterinary clinic will offer services including X-rays, MRIs, embryo transfer, emergency and routine surgery, haematology, parasitology, stem-cell and plasma rehabilitation therapies, and laser surgery.

AlUla’s Equestrian Village, AlMuatadil, will attract tourists interested in equestrian experiences in line with light-touch tourism and sustainability principles. All organic stable and food waste on site will be recycled to create fertiliser to support the local agriculture sector. Water used in the cooling system for the stables will also be recycled.

As a unique all-in-one multi competition hub, the Equestrian Village will put AlUla onto the world map of equestrian sports with international competitions being broadcast to up to 45 million people worldwide.

Fittingly, the announcement of the AlMuatadil Equestrian Village is being made during the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques Endurance Cup 2023, where guests can view a 3D model of the village. The Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques Endurance Cup 2023 is the ultimate test of man and horse against time and the elements as 200 riders navigate 120 km of AlUla’s unique and rugged desert terrain.

The Equestrian Village will contribute to the economic diversification of AlUla County by creating new career pathways for residents. RCU’s partnership with the Association de Formation et d’Action Sociale des Écuries de Courses (AFASEC) will train young Saudis and develop their technical qualifications for specialized work in the equestrian sector.

Further, a partnership with Polo Club Saint-Tropez will play a key role in shaping AlUla’s equestrian experience, with the Saint-Tropez experts providing insights and technical support into the management and development of the equestrian offering across polo club management, tournament organisation, horse management and the development of equestrian facilities.

Development of the Equestrian Village will provide genuine potential to develop an attractive one-stop-shop location dedicated to equestrian activities and to act as a catalyst for real estate and hospitality investment.

The masterplan for AlMuatadil Village is being developed by the US-based infrastructure consultancy Aecom in cooperation with the Saudi Equestrian Federation and an RCU design panel.