World’s largest hotel to be built in Mecca

Mecca has unveiled plans to build the world’s largest hotel by 2017

Photo by: Reuters
Photo by: Reuters

Updated Jul 28, 2015

Muslim’s holy city Mecca will have the 10,000-room largest hotel in the world called Abraj Kudai when it opens in 2017.

The Abraj al-Bait clock tower is situated in Mecca which is a luxury hotel that is the world’s second tallest building.

Mecca is the holy city for Muslims where the annual pilgrimage, Hajj, takes place. It is one of the most important events for Muslim people around the world.

The 10,000-room Abraj Kudai hotel will be built in the Manafia district, just south of the Grand Mosque. 

It will contain 70 restaurants, food courts, a bus station, shopping mall, conference center, ballroom and five floors dedicated for the sole use of the Saudi royal family.

It will consist of 12 towers standing on top of a 10-story podium and centered around a massive dome.

Kabaa is located in Mecca, which is the holiest place in Islam. During the Ottoman Empire it was forbidden to construct any buildings higher than the Kabaa.  

Many are worried that the “sanctity of the place” is being replaced by “Las Vegas-like” accommodation as Mecca’s impact on the affordability of the historic pilgrimage might be ruined. 

But to some as it is the most visited and busiest city, due to having significant importance for Muslim people and having millions of people visiting Mecca every year, the holy city needs bigger hotels. 

The director of the UK-based Islamic Heritage Research Foundation Irfan Al-Alawi says “The city is turning into Mecca-hattan. Everything has been swept away to make way for the incessant march of luxury hotels, which are destroying the sanctity of the place and pricing normal pilgrims out.”

Mecca in Saudi Arabia attracts more than 20 million people in a year. It is also a popular place for weddings and conferences. 

Over 2 million Muslims are expected for annual Hajj, a holy pilgrimage, to Mecca every year to take part in one of Islam's five pillars of faith.

TRTWorld and agencies