Many people don’t realize that when the phrase “Mecca” is used, it is actually referring to a real place. Located in Saudi Arabia, Mecca is a holy city millions of religious pilgrims visit every year. Soon, if all goes according to plan, Mecca will house the largest hotel on planet Earth.
According to GeoBeats News:
Each year millions embark upon a religious pilgrimage to the holy city of Mecca in Saudi Arabia. Soon, if everything goes as planned, the heavily visited desert locale will also be home to the world’s largest hotel, the Abraj Kudai.
Among its 45 floors will be 10 thousand bedrooms, about 70 restaurants, and a shopping center. 4 helicopter pads will be available to meet guests’ travel needs. The public is not invited to wander about the whole building however. 5 floors will be set aside for the exclusive use of the Saudi royal family.
The estimated cost of the project is over 3-and-a-half billion dollars, and its completion should occur in 2017. Announcement of the plan to build the massive luxury complex comes amidst concerns that Mecca is becoming too expensive for the average pilgrim and over commercialized in general. Some worry that such construction endeavors, which have become increasingly common, are undermining the city’s religious significance.
Tall buildings have also mostly overshadowed the Grand Mosque. The director of the Islamic Heritage Research Foundation commented, “People have been finding they’re praying in the wrong direction because they simply don’t know which way the mosque is any more.”
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