Ready for take-off: Red Sea Global celebrates first flight to new airport

  • New twice-weekly service from Riyadh to Red Sea International Airport (RSI) starts today.
  • Announcement coincides with the reveal of the RSI brand.

Red Sea Global (RSG), the multi-project developer behind the world’s most ambitious regenerative tourism destinations, The Red Sea and Amaala, is celebrating the first flight to its Red Sea International Airport (RSI), which touched down on the new runway earlier today (21 September 2023). 

Departing from King Khalid International Airport (RUH) in Riyadh each Thursday and Saturday, The SAUDIA flight, which takes under two hours, marks the start of a new twice-weekly service. The flights return to Riyadh later the same day.

“We promised to make The Red Sea a place where people from all around the world would come to experience the best of Saudi culture, hospitality, and nature. Now, with the first flight touching down at Red Sea International Airport, and our first resorts receiving bookings, Saudi Arabia’s position on the global tourism map is all but secured,” said John Pagano, Group CEO of Red Sea Global.

From today, the flights depart RUH each Thursday at 10.50am, before departing again to the Kingdom’s capital from RSI at 13:35pm. A second service departs RUH every Saturday at 12.50pm, with the return flight for RUH departing at 15:35pm.

Positioned within an eight-hour flight from 85 percent of the world’s population, RSI will grow to welcome international flights from next year as additional phase one resorts open their doors.

Red Sea International Airport is operated by daa International, which has supported Red Sea Global with design validation and commissioning of RSI since 2020. With the arrival of RSI’s first commercial flight, daa International’s operational responsibility commences.

On the same day as it welcomes its first flight, RSG also revealed the new brand for RSI. Visitors can expect to see the brand expressed across multiple touchpoints, from the airport terminal and staff uniforms to the electric mobility vehicles that will transport passengers from air to land side.

“RSI is the gateway to The Red Sea destination. It is the first impression visitors have, and their parting memory when they leave. The brand echoes the qualities of the five-star hospitality guests will enjoy across the destination,” Mr. Pagano added.

The brand icon is a representation of the Red Sea International Airport’s unique architecture. The iconic shape is inspired by the bird’s eye view of the airport’s exterior. It has been created to express the creativity, novelty and sophistication of the brand in a way that is contemporary and distinct. 

As well as its airport, Red Sea Global has made great progress across other infrastructure works to ensure The Red Sea is ready to welcome visitors and meet its promises for responsible development and regenerative tourism. It has constructed the five solar farms needed to enable the first phase of The Red Sea to be off grid and powered solely by sunlight, with more than 760,000 solar panels installed. 

Its Landscape Nursery, the largest in the region, has already grown more than four million trees, plants, and shrubs. In July, RSG also opened a state-of-the-art Mangrove Nursery, with the aim of planting 50 million mangroves by 2030.

Upon full completion in 2030, the destination will comprise 50 resorts, offering up to 8,000 hotel rooms and more than 1,000 residential properties across 22 islands and six inland sites. The destination will also include luxury marinas, golf courses, entertainment, F&B, and leisure facilities.

Red Sea Global (RSG – is a closed joint-stock company wholly owned by the Public Investment Fund (PIF) of Saudi Arabia.

RSG is a global multi-project developer, seeking to lead the world towards a more sustainable future, showing how responsible and regenerative development can uplift communities, drive economies, and enhance the environment. The protection of natural capital is central to all development decisions, as the organization seeks to create a better future for all.

A cornerstone of Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030 ambition to diversify its economy, RSG is playing a key role in transforming the nation, by creating exciting opportunities for young Saudi talent and the private sector, as it develops assets and destinations across multiple sectors that make a positive impact for people and the planet.