A piece of Jeddah in Jubail: Albaik pops up for Sharqiah Season

Albaik's mobile restaurant on the move in Alkhobar. (Supplied photo)
Updated 14 March 2019
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A piece of Jeddah in Jubail: Albaik pops up for Sharqiah Season

  • Jeddah's legendary chicken shack is the Kingdom's answer to Kentucky Fried Chicken
  • Althought it opened as far back as 1974, Albaik has started expanding outside the Hijaz area only last year

ALKHOBAR: As Jubail gets ready to be part of the Sharqiah Season, another attraction is sure to draw attention from far and wide: a temporary branch of Albaik, the legendary Jeddah chicken shack. Visitors to Jubail’s Young Marine Park can now swing by its pop-up restaurant for a taste of the west coast’s iconic fried chicken for the next 45 days, between 10 a.m. and 10 p.m. 

“I don’t care if it’s in Jubail; I’ll go all the way there for Albaik,” one person tweeted. “It’s cheaper than getting a flight to Jeddah, after all.”

Al Baik's mobile restaurant on the move in Alkhobar. (Supplied photo)

The first Albaik restaurant opened in Jeddah in 1974 as the local answer to Kentucky Fried Chicken and has since gained something of a cult following in Saudi culture. Long seen as a west-coast-exclusive, Albaik has only just started to expand outside of the Hijaz region and into other parts of Saudi Arabia. Riyadh now has two branches in operation, with more on the way, and the chain shows no signs of slowing down.

The fast-food chain took to Twitter to announce plans to expand its reach to the east coast back in October of 2018, causing a nationwide frenzy amongst fried chicken enthusiasts. “Goodbye, KFC, McDonald’s, Kudu and Herfy!” one fan commented on Albaik’s Facebook page. “If we’re getting Albaik, then no other fast food matters.”

The pop-up shares its debut with that of Sharqiah Season, a festival that opens across several east coast cities on Thursday, March 14 and runs until March 30. With Jubail events including a multimedia water show, watersport competitions, concerts and exhibitions, residents and visitors alike can take in the entertainment and grab some coveted chicken goodness to boot.

The festival will also feature sports events such as the Red Bull Air Race and the Formula 1 H20 boat race, as well as concerts in Dammam featuring Akon, Deadmau5, Pitbull and French Montana.


MiSK, Qiddiya team up for internship program 

Updated 25 March 2019
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MiSK, Qiddiya team up for internship program 

  • Interns will work on entertainment mega-project
  • Program open to university seniors and new graduates

RIYADH: A new internship program for young Saudis has been launched in the Kingdom, following a partnership between Misk Foundation and the Qiddiya Investment Company (QIC).

The program runs from June 16 to Aug. 31, 2019, and provides an opportunity for university seniors and recent graduates to be part of Qiddiya, an entertainment mega-project located 40 minutes from Riyadh.

Interns will have the chance to work at Qiddiya’s corporate offices alongside professionals from around the world and will be placed across 12 departments.

They will learn and develop skills that are required to succeed in their professional lives.

They will also gain exposure to QIC’s culture and learn from executives with over 20 years of experience across several sectors. 

QIC CEO Mike Reininger said: “We are contributing directly to the Saudi Vision (2030 reform plan) by creating a richer lifestyle for Saudi citizens while spurring innovation in the creative, hospitality and entertainment sectors. This unique opportunity allows students and fresh graduates to experience what it takes to be part of the change in Saudi by giving them the chance to work alongside a group of both local and international seasoned professionals. Thanks to this partnership with MiSK, we will be training the next generation of industry leaders.” 

Application to the program is open for those with fewer than two years of professional experience. Candidates must show strong academic credentials and submit a short video as part of their application.

King Salman led the Qiddiya ground-breaking ceremony in front of a global audience last April.

The project is aimed at helping to stem the $30 billion a year which Saudis currently spend abroad on tourism, and has the backing of the Kingdom’s Public Investment Fund.

It targets local, regional and international tourists and will be Saudi Arabia’s preeminent entertainment, sports and cultural destination.

It is expected to be the world’s largest entertainment city by 2030, with a total area of 334 square kilometers, surpassing Walt Disney World in Florida, which is only 110 sq. km.