How Tall is Tall? Getting to Know the Kingdom Centre
Completed in 2002, the Kingdom Centre is the tallest skyscraper in Saudi Arabia, with a height of 302 metres (992 feet). This is the equivalent of roughly 65 one-storey homes, all stacked on top of each other. Pretty impressive, no doubt.
Although most know it as a destination for business and shopping, the Kingdom Centre is, in fact, much more. Here are a few facts about one of Saudi Arabia’s most intriguing structures:
- The total cost to build the Kingdom Centre was approximately 1.717 billion Saudi Arabian Riyals, or $1 billion US dollars.
- The building has been called “the necklace” of the city due to its unusual apex, which features a circular-shaped opening.
- This opening is called a “caternary arch” and is a common form seen in both nature (a spider’s web) and architecture (The St. Louis Arch).
- The opening is often illuminated at night, in a variety of colours.
- An observation deck at the top of Kingdom Centre lets you take in a panoramic view of the whole city.
- How do you get there? A sky bridge, of course. Located on the 99th floor, it’s 300 tonnes of steel and glass and connects the two towers. High-speed elevators will whisk you there in no time.
- The Kingdom Centre houses the world’s tallest mosque, on the 77th floor, as well as a special ladies-only shopping area on the second floor called “The Ladies Kingdom.”
You’ll also find Four Seasons Hotel Riyadh in this prestigious building, occupying the 30th to 48th floors. A quick trip through the Hotel lobby will put you right in the centre of the shops and eateries, so make sure to make time for this during your stay.