Ahlan Wa Sahlan and welcome to Al Ahsa InterContinental. My concierge team and I will be honoured to have you with us. We are here to ensure that your needs are met and look forward to having you an enjoyable stay.
Our Concierge team offers dedicated services to guests such as airline bookings, lost luggage tracing, car rental, business & touristic information, dine in & dine out assistance, newspapers, cross hotel bookings, entertainment and anything else guests may need.
Start with morning Coffee at al Dehliz Café a Walking distance from the hotel. Enjoy the fresh flavoured coffee with local cookies freshly prepared for you. Visit then the Qaser Ibrahim Palace and the Museum (exactly 1 km away from the hotel), originally built in 1551 by the invading Turkish army, where you will explore the opportunity to see the old life of Al Ahsa.
For lunch go to Topaz restaurant, a multi cuisine restaurant serving Indo Chines, Mediterranean and Oriental food. Then make a visit to Jabal Qarah, also called Ash-Shab'an mountain, in the middle of a palm filled oasis. The mountain is famous for its gigantic caves: cold in summer and warm in winter.
In the evening, when it's cooler, visit the Al Qaisariyah Souk market for traditional and local herbs and perfumes. Followed by a Italian dinner at Organo restaurant , an authentic Italian cuisines. You should still have time to go to the textile factory, Bisht, where they weave much of the cloth you see in the souks.
Make sure that you do not carry any alcohol with you while entering Saudi Arabia. All forms of liquor are prohibited in the Kingdom and can result in imprisonment.
The climate can be extremely hot in summer with temperature above 40C and quite cold in the winter months goes down to 5C. Cotton and linen wear is best during the hottest months (April to September) and bring heavy or thick clothing and a jacket during winter (December to March).
No photography is allowed in public places, especially near government buildings. Avoid taking pictures of ladies, which can lead into facing a trial.
It is recommended that you exchange some currency before you arrive in the Kingdom, just enough to cover airport incidentals and transportation to the hotel. The Saudi Riyal (SR) is the unit of currency, with one Saudi Riyal made up of a hundred Halalahs. Since July 1986, the Saudi Riyal has been pegged to the US dollar with a fixed exchange rate of SR 3.75 to US $1. Al Ahsa InterContinental provides currency exchange facilities at the front desk and also having an ATM machines at the lobby.
Shops and business establishments will be closed during each prayer time. Therefore it might be more convenient to shop in the evenings. A variety of shopping facilities available in Al Ahsa within a short drive from the hotel.
DID YOU KNOW ?
Al Ahsa Name
The name Al Ahsa describes the physical nature of the area. The word Hasa is the plural of the arabic word 'hasi' which means sand-covered rocky land that stores water.
The area boasts more than two million fruitful date palms with 300,000 trees irrigated fountains and underground wells. Al-Ahsa Oasis has largest agricultural area estimated about 20,000 hectares . Around 3 million date palms produce finest varieties of dates called Kalkhas, Alrziz, Ciche, Elgar, Khunaizi, Zmily and many others.
Science and literature
Al Ahsa was the destination of the divine Islamic science scholars who travelled from India, Africa and the Middle East and brought religion and literature in addition to scientific knowledge.
WHAT TO PACK
Islamic culture requires women to wear an abaya, an over-garment traditionally black, that covers the whole body except the face, feet and hands.
In summer, between June and September, bring sunscreen, sunglasses and light or thin clothing as the temperature reaches more than 40 degrees centigrade. During winter bring heavy or thick clothing and a jacket as the temperature goes down to 6 degrees centigrade.
The local currency is Saudi Riyal (SAR). It's advisable to change some money before you arrive, at least 500 SAR, to cover transport or airport incidentals. SAR 1.00 = USD 0.266
Taxis operate 24 hours a day and are available to take you from the airport to the hotel. The cost is US$100 and taxis can be booked in advance with the Concierge. From Dammam Int'l airport follow the Riyadh Road signs which leads to Al Ahsa (Hofuf) which is about 165 km.