Gerard “Jerry” Inzerillo is appointed as the CEO of the Riyadh tourism project

Saudi Arabia has appointed a “tourism visionary” to spearhead its ideas to develop a number of major new tourism and historical assets.

Crown Prince of the Saudi Arabia and chairman of the Diriyah Gate Development Authority (DGDA), Mohammed Bin Salman Bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, has appointed Gerard “Jerry” Inzerillo as CEO of the authority.

Inzerillo will look after the restoration of Diriyah and the development of new academic institutions,museums and “edutainment” facilities, also resorts, wellness facilities, restaurants and high-end retail in a 7.1 million square metre development on the west side of Riyadh.

Inzerillo was earlier the CEO of Forbes Travel Guide and has been at the helm of some of the world’s leading hospitality companies, including Sun City Resort, Ian Schrager Hotels, Kerzner International Resorts, where he manged major aspects of the 1994 inauguration of President Nelson Mandela, Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts and Hilton Hotels & Resorts.

Inzerillo stated, “I am deeply honoured to have the privilege to contribute to His Royal Highness’ dynamic vision for the nation.” He even said, “This is truly an inspired time in this extraordinary country. I am particularly grateful to lead a world-class team in the development of this historic site, which will give the world its truest window into the soul and spirit of this land, its welcoming people and their rich history.”

A UNESCO registered site, Diriyah, is the birthplace of the first, second, and present Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

Majority of the original site, developed in adobe brick in the traditional architecture of the greater Najd region, will be authentically restored with latest tourism attractions and facilities.

The At-Turaif District in Diriyah has been designated by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site and the Saudi Crown Prince envisions Diriyah as a place where “the past will be celebrated and the future awakened and where all who enter its gates will be inspired, engaged and entertained”.

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