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RCU appoints AVIAREPS as destination marketing representative in KSA, GCC
Published in The Saudi Gazette on 13 - 09 - 2020

The Royal Commission for AlUla (RCU) has appointed AVIAREPS, a global leader and expert in developing and shaping international tourism demand and spend, as the destination's travel trade marketing and communications representative in Saudi Arabia, as well as the Gulf Countries of Bahrain, Kuwait and the United Arab Emirates.
The representation, which comes into immediate effect, will see AVIAREPS promote AlUla's unique tourist attractions and experiences to travelers and outbound travel industry professionals located in the Gulf Countries, through various targeted marketing and public relations activities.
AlUla is a living museum of preserved tombs, sandstone outcrops, historic dwellings and monuments, both natural and human-made, that hold 200,000 years of largely unexplored human history. It was also the capital of the ancient kingdoms of Dadan and Lihyan, which controlled the caravan trade of old. AlUla is also home to the site of Hegra (Al-Hijr), which was the principal southern city of the Nabataean kingdom, famed for its spectacular monumental tombs.
Through a mix of public relations and marketing services, the AVIAREPS team will be responsible for raising the profile of AlUla as a year-round travel destination for visitors from Saudi Arabia and the Gulf Countries seeking holiday memories that last a lifetime.
Said Melanie De Souza, executive director, Destination Marketing at RCU: "We are excited to collaborate with AVIAREPS in Saudi Arabia and the GCC as we look to launch AlUla as a year-round destination in the coming months. We are positive that this partnership will help us generate greater awareness of AlUla as a unique travel destination and increase visitor numbers both domestically and from the neighboring countries of the GCC, where they can find unmatched travel experiences."
De Souza added, "In addition to being home to a series of fascinating historical and archaeological sites such as Hegra, Ancient Dadan, the capital of the Dadan and Lihyan Kingdoms, AlUla offers some of the world's most scenic desert landscapes, a lush oasis, and immersive arts and events experiences. Exciting initiatives are underway and planned with AVIAREPS to bring the excitement of AlUla to life for potential visitors and industry partners."
Many marketing and promotional initiatives are planned to be rolled out within the dedicated markets, including campaigns focused on nature and heritage, adventure tourism, events and arts, luxury experiences and cultural immersion.
Said Glenn Johnston, vice president Middle East & Global Public Affairs, AVIAREPS: "It is an honor to work with RCU and assist with the launch of AlUla as a new tourist destination not only for Saudis and residents of the region, but for travelers internationally. With our full commitment and expertise, we look forward to playing our role in making the opening of AlUla to the world a rich, rewarding and meaningful experience for all involved."
Often referred to as one of the world's largest living museums, AlUla is located in north-western Saudi Arabia and is cradled in a spectacular valley with palm groves running through its center and sandstone cliffs surrounding it. An area the size of a country this site is accessible by road and thrice-weekly flights from Jeddah and Riyadh.
Once opened in October 2020, visitors to AlUla will have the opportunity to access its four main heritage sites, including Saudi Arabia's first UNESCO World Heritage Site of Hegra (Al-Hijr), Jabal Ikmah, (the open-air library), and Dadan . From December, AlUla's Old Town, will be open to visitors for the very first time. This labyrinth of 900 mud brick buildings has been continuously occupied since the 12th century. — SG


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