Joud Lounge Opens at Al Faisaliah, Riyadh

Al Faisaliah Hotel, Riyadh introduces Joud Lounge, a new stylish venue in the heart of the iconic hotel, perfect for meeting, socialising and connecting with friends and colleagues.

Offering the ultimate lounge experience in one of the most sought-after addresses in Saudi Arabia, Joud Lounge presents an outstanding menu of delectable delights as well as a fine Afternoon Tea experience, creative mocktails, exquisite desserts and artisanal chocolates.

Designed to deliver Al Faisaliah Hotel’s signature hospitality, the new lounge boasts an elegant and comfortable setting with lush interiors and natural daylight. In addition, Joud Lounge features a cake shop with a splendid offering of handcrafted French pastry and chocolate pralines that will tantalise the tastebuds of all lovers of sweet indulgences.


An unmissable Afternoon Tea experience awaits daily from 2pm to 6pm with an array of decadent bites and platters such as éclairs, scones, madeleines, tarts, cupcakes, petit savoury bites along with a selection of the finest coffee and custom-blended Jing Tea creations.

Guests can also enjoy a sumptuous breakfast menu from 7am to 11am, a gourmet lunch from 11am to 4pm with a variety of premium bite-sized Western, Eastern, Asian, and Oriental dishes and a delightful dinner menu from 6pm to 12:30am.

For more information, please call +966 11 273 2000 or email


Amazon Payment Services Appoints Mona AlSemayen as the Country Head for Strategy and Growth in Saudi Arabia

Amazon Payment Services, a payment service provider operating across the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region, has announced the appointment of Mona Alsemayen as the Country Head, Strategy, and Growth for Amazon Payment Services in Saudi Arabia.

Peter George, Managing Director of Amazon Payment Services, commented: “We are excited to welcome Mona into our team. In this critical role, Mona will lead the Amazon Payment Services business in Saudi Arabia during our next ambitious period of expansion in the country, enabling the digitization of businesses across all sectors of the economy by offering a fast, safe and seamless digital payments experience. I look forward to seeing Mona spearhead our next chapter of growth in Saudi Arabia.”

An experienced and dynamic professional in the domain of Business Transformation and Payment Systems in the GCC region, Mona brings a wealth of knowledge and skills to her new role, having been responsible for key initiatives and market developments related to Payment Systems at the Saudi Central Bank, in addition to having developed the regional payment network as the Business Director at the Gulf Payments Company (GPC).

Amazon Payment Services currently boasts a team of 15 employees in Saudi Arabia, who serve more than 1,700 merchants and partners in the kingdom by offering a fast, safe, and seamless digital payments experience to their customers.


Four Points by Sheraton Expands in Saudi Arabia with The Opening of Four Points by Sheraton Jeddah Corniche

Located on South Obhur in the new Jeddah Corniche, Four Points by Sheraton Jeddah Corniche is ideal for business and leisure travelers.

Four Points by Sheraton, part of Marriott Bonvoy’s portfolio of 30 extraordinary hotel brands, has yesterday announced the opening of Four Points by Sheraton Jeddah Corniche owned by Al Murjan Group Holding. The hotel caters to the needs of everyday business and leisure travelers with its approachable, relaxed design and stylish comfort.

Just 12 minutes away from King Abdulaziz International Airport and close to King Abdullah Sports City Stadium, the hotel is designed with the global traveler in mind. Featuring a classic and timeless aesthetic, the light and neutral colors throughout the hotel evoke a feeling of relaxation and balance.


“Four Points by Sheraton Jeddah Corniche is a great addition to our rapidly growing portfolio in the Kingdom. We are confident that with its blend of stylish comfort and genuine service at an honest value, the hotel will meet the rising demand for high-caliber lodging in the market. This opening further compliments Marriott International’s commitment to supporting the growth of the country’s tourism sector,” said Sandeep Walia, Chief Operating Officer – the Middle East at Marriott International.

Designed for the modern traveler with an emphasis on delivering what matters the most, Four Points by Sheraton Jeddah Corniche features 301 well-appointed rooms, including 113 suites. Each spacious guestroom has breathtaking sea views through floor-to-ceiling windows, 24-hour room service, and complimentary Wi-Fi. 


The Creek Restaurant, the hotel’s all-day dining restaurant, offers exceptional International and Asian cuisine for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. The restaurant serves a blend of delicious Arabian, International dishes, desserts, including a selection of soft drinks and juices. The hotel’s Lobby Café serves specialty coffees, light bites, and refreshments in a relaxed atmosphere.

To meet the needs of business travelers, the property also has over 570 square meters of flexible meeting space with eight fully-equipped meeting rooms. Other facilities include a health club and swimming pool. Guests can also benefit from the hotel’s Concierge Service and airport transfers.

The Four Points by Sheraton Jeddah Corniche is now open for bookings and reservations.

Visit, or call +966 12 211 8899 for more information.


‘Alexa, Ya Hala!’ Amazon Introduces Alexa in Khaleeji Arabic & Launches Echo Devices in Saudi Arabia

Alexa is a cloud-based voice service that is always getting smarter—just ask and Alexa will play music, read the news, answer questions, recite the Quran, control compatible smart home devices, and more.

Amazon Echo devices are designed entirely around your voice—they’re always ready, hands-free, and fast.

Based on your language setting, Alexa now understands Arabic Khaleeji dialects, Modern Standard Arabic (Fus’ha) or English.

Developers can use the Alexa Skills Kit (ASK) to build skills or the Alexa Voice Service (AVS) to integrate Alexa directly into their products, bringing the convenience of voice control to their connected devices.

Amazon today announced that Alexa, the brain that powers the the Echo device family, is coming to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia – offering customers an all-new, localized language experience in an Arabic Khaleeji dialect, unique new features built with Saudi customers in mind, new smart home integrations with compatible devices, and nearly 200 Alexa skills.  echo-show-8-2

Echo devices are voice-controlled speakers designed entirely around your voice—they are always ready, hands-free, and fast. Alexa runs in the cloud, receives new feature updates on an ongoing basis, and is therefore always getting smarter. Just ask, and Alexa will answer questions, play music, read the news, recite the Quran in the voice of your favorite Qari, set timers and alarms, provide sports scores, control lights or air-conditioning at home, and much more. With Echo’s far-field voice control, you can do all this from across the room, using just your voice.

In the Kingdom, Alexa delivers a localized experience, including a local dialect voice with a local personality that will surprise and delight customers—local pronunciations and intonation; local knowledge; and nearly 200 Alexa skills with favorites from Saudi developers and regional brands including Anghami, AlArabiya, MBC, Careem, Fatafeat, Al Baik, Sabq, and more.

“We’re incredibly excited to bring Alexa and the Echo family of devices to Saudi Arabia,” said Tom Taylor, Senior Vice President, Amazon Alexa. “The team has worked hard to create an all-new experience designed from the ground up for our customers in Saudi Arabia, reflecting the Kingdom’s rich heritage, traditions, and culture while celebrating the uniqueness of the Arabic language.”echo-show-10-4

Saudi Arabia is building an infrastructure with international standards that will pave the way to make it a leading digital nation and be among top 20 digital economies and a hub for technology investments in the region.” Starting today, Amazon Alexa will contribute to our goals and help drive the adoption of IoT and artificial intelligence in Saudi Arabia”, said Nawaf Alhoshan, Deputy Minister for Technology Development at the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology in Saudi Arabia.

“As the region’s leading digital music platform, we’re thrilled to team up with Alexa, providing customers with access to millions of international and Arabic songs and podcasts”, said Elie Habib, Co-founder and CTO of Anghami. “Only by using their voice, customers can ask Alexa to play any song from the region’s largest music catalog in Arabic – this adds a new dimension to our customer experience.”

Amazon Echo—Spherical Design, Dolby Stereo Sound, Built-in Zigbee Hub
As a hands-free, voice-controlled device with a built-in speaker, Echo combines premium sound, and a built-in Zigbee smart home hub. Featuring a 3.0-inch woofer, dual-firing tweeters, and Dolby processing, Echo delivers clear highs, dynamic mids and deep bass for rich sound and can automatically adapt to your room by sensing the acoustics of your space.

Echo Dot and Echo Dot with clock (4th gen) —Compact design and crisp, full sound
Echo Dot is our most popular speaker globally and features a compact, spherical design that produces crisp vocals and balanced bass for full sound with a powerful 1.6-inch, front-firing speaker. Echo Dot with clock comes with the same features as Echo Dot, plus a simple LED display so you can glance at the time, timers, and alarms. With a tap-to-snooze feature, these devices are the perfect addition to any bedside table. Echo Dot is available in Charcoal, White and Blue, Echo Dot with clock is available in White and Blue. Echo Dot (3rd gen): The most affordable Echo device in our line-up is simple to set up and use—plug in, open the Alexa app, and get started in minutes. With four far-field microphones, Alexa hears you from across the room. And with compatible Echo devices in different rooms, you can fill your whole home with sound.

Echo Show 5 — Compact smart display with Alexa
Echo Show 5 has a smart display with a 2MP HD camera. Customize your morning routine to wake up with lights and an alarm that plays your favorite song. Glance at a to-do list or see the news, show prayer times, set timers, and stream music or videos—all using just your voice.

Echo Show 8 — See your day clearly
Echo Show 8 features a 13-MP wide-angle camera and an 8” HD touchscreen with adaptive colour. The device has built-in dual speakers to deliver a great experience whether that’s listening to music from Anghami or Spotify, or watching TV shows and movies from Netflix, Prime Video, and more.

Echo Show 10—Designed to Move with You
Echo Show 10 is designed to move with you—the brilliant 10” HD screen will automatically turn toward your direction so you can keep your eyes on the screen, focused on what you’re watching. Glance at the weather, news, stream music and videos, follow recipes, see compatible cameras, play games, and more.

Alexa—The Brain Behind Amazon Echo
Built in the cloud, and with third party developers around the world creating skills, the Alexa service is always getting smarter. With Alexa, you can use just your voice to:

Hear the News
Alexa can read the news and give customized updates based on your preferences. You can choose your favorite outlets to provide the news or sports results, including Al Arabiya, CNBC Arabia, Arriyadiah, Sports 360, Harvard Business Review Arabic, Sabq, and more. Just say, “Alexa, what’s the news?”. At launch, the following radio stations will be available: MBC FM, Panorama FM Radio, Rotana FM, and UFM.

Set prayer times and recite the Quran
Alexa can recite the Quran from the surah or Juz’u of your choice, all by voice. Just say, “Alexa, play surat Al Kahaf.” Customers can also set prayer times by saying “Alexa, wake me when it is time for Fajr”. Soon, customers will also be able to check the Hijri calendar by asking Alexa to remind them to get the aydiya before the last ten days of Ramdan.

Listen to Music Everywhere
Alexa offers a seamless music experience with premium services including Anghami, Spotify, and more. In addition, listen to radio from your favorite stations like MBC, Panorama, and more. Control music and play millions of songs by saying, “Alexa, play pop music” or “Alexa, skip this song.” You can also group multiple Echo devices and synchronize them to stream the same music in every room. Wake up to your favorite songs each morning by saying “Alexa, wake me up to top hits”.

Control your Smart Home
Use any Echo device to switch on the lamp before getting out of bed, or dim the lights from the couch to watch a movie. Also enjoy hands-free home security with Ring, whose cameras, video doorbells, are all compatible with Alexa, helping secure your home and bring peace of mind. Just say, “Alexa, check on the nursery” to see your camera feed on your Echo Show device. Alexa also works with other compatible smart home devices from brands including Philips Hue, Xiaomi, TP Link, and more.

Ask Questions
Ask Alexa questions about famous people, dates, places, calculations, conversions, and much more. For example, “Alexa, what time is maghrib in Makkah?”, “Alexa, when is Eid Al Adha?”, or “Alexa, when was King Fahad causway built?”. Or, ask Alexa for a joke by saying “Alexa, tell me a joke.”

Follow your Favorite Sports Teams
Ask Alexa for live scores or scores for completed games, find out when your favorite team plays their next game, and more. Just ask “Alexa, what is the Al-Hilal score?”, “Alexa, when is the next match of the Saudi national team?”

Built with Privacy in Mind
All Echo devices are designed with multiple layers of privacy protection, including physical microphone and camera controls. You can choose to delete your Alexa voice recordings in multiple ways, by voice or through the Alexa app. Just say, “Alexa, delete what I just said”. Or you can use the Alexa app to delete your voice recordings all at once, have your voice recordings automatically deleted after three or 18 months on an ongoing basis, or choose not to have them saved in the first place. Echo Show devices also offer accessibility features that benefit all customers, including the ability to interact with Alexa using touch instead of voice, to see captions for Alexa’s responses on the device screen, and more.

Third Party Skills
Replace with: At launch, customers will be able to enjoy nearly 200 skills available in Saudi Arabia, including rideshare services through the Careem skill, recipes and cook along instructions through the Fatafeat skill, order tracking through the AlBaik Restaurant or Domino’s, play with friends “Question of the Day”, audiobook services through Storytel, and more.

Pricing and Availability
All devices announced today are available on Echo, Echo Dot, Echo Dot with clock, Echo Show 5, Echo Show 8 and Echo Show 10 will start shipping on December 14. To celebrate Alexa’s arrival in the region and as an introductory offer, any Echo device is available at a reduced price for a limited period of time.

  • Amazon Echo Dot (3rd gen): 199,99 SAR, introductory offer 119,99 SAR, Charcoal
  • Amazon Echo Dot (4th gen): 239,99 SAR, introductory offer 159,99 SAR, Charcoal, White and Blue
  • Amazon Echo Dot (4th gen) with clock: 299,99 SAR, introductory offer 259,99 SAR, White and Blue
  • Amazon Echo (4th gen): 479,99 SAR, introductory offer 319,99 SAR, Charcoal, White and Blue
  • Amazon Echo Show 5 (2nd gen): 369,99 SAR, introductory offer 229,99 SAR, Charcoal, White and Blue
  • Amazon Echo Show 8 (2nd gen): 579,99 SAR, introductory offer 399,99 SAR, Charcoal and White
  • Amazon Echo Show 10 (2nd gen): 1199,99 SAR, introductory offer 1099,99 SAR, Charcoal and White