Saudi Arabia’s golf craze just got a royal blessing with HRH Princess Nourah bint Mohammed Al Faisal’s recent visit to Royal Greens Golf & Country Club. And while attending the finale of the Aramco Team Series in Jeddah, the internationally recognised designer and entrepreneur saw firsthand the uptake in the game by Saudi women.
During her first visit to a golf club, the Saudi royal watched her cousin HRH Prince Khalid Al Faisal play in the event as an amateur. Princess Nourah also took part in a golf clinic with two coaches from Golf Saudi, the institution that’s aiming to position the Kingdom as an exceptional golfing nation. While picking up a golf club for the first time, she was impressed and excited by Golf Saudi’s Mass Participation programme and what it means for the future. The sport loving royal was also visibly swayed by the quality of facilities at Royal Greens Golf & Country Club.
“It was very pleasing, a lot more fun than I expected and I loved it. I think I now understand how people become obsessed with golf. Sport is essential to Saudi women, it opens up a whole new avenue of possibilities for them, not just as an athlete but also for the career opportunities that are being created for Saudis to work in the sports industry,” Princess Nourah said. “Golf is very new here in the Kingdom and to see women involved in the Aramco Team Series is very important, as Saudi women will try to emulate what they’ve seen.”
The princess, who lived in the UK for many years, also touched on the big moment the first female jockeys came to compete in the Saudi Cup in 2020. She said the Kingdom now has young Saudi women who are jockeys, have started training or have jobs with the Jockey Club.
“There is something about sports and its ability to help you focus, set goals, train hard and achieve great things. So, the work Golf Saudi is doing to grow the women’s game is highly commendable and it was fantastic to visit Royal Greens Golf & Country Club for the first time and hear more about the work of the Ladies First Club powered by Aramco and its efforts to boost participation, all of which has left me in no doubt that the future of sport within the Kingdom is very bright.”
The Mass Participation programme by Golf Saudi, which facilitates uptake and participation in golf through the delivery of world-class facilities, operational excellence and the implementation of industry best practice, aims to grow the game of golf and boost participation in Saudi Arabia. And one initiative that Princess Nourah wanted to learn more about was the Ladies First Club, which was created exactly a year ago. The royal will be joining the club in a bid to encourage other women to stay healthy and enjoy a new activity.
Upon its creation, the Ladies First Club saw loads of women across the country registered to learn golf for the first time through the initiative, with over 1,000 women signing-up in the first four days it was launched. Over the past 12 months, the Ladies First Club has been successful in terms of bringing more Saudi women into golf, aligning with Golf Saudi's continuous efforts to develop the sport and the Kingdom’s wider ambitions under Vision 2030, which aims to get more Saudis regularly active.
About Princess Nourah bint Mohammed Al Faisal
Princess Nourah, who has a certificate in Interior Design from England's The American International University in Richmond, served an apprenticeship at one of Paris’s most exclusive workshops in Place Vendome. Soon after, she began working on private commissions, developing her craft and building upon her previous academic work in Paris and London. Following a successful career in private commissions, Princess Nourah founded two design ventures, Nuun Jewels in Paris and Adhlal in Riyadh. The go-getter now has two decades of industry experience under her belt.
The princess, who has had her work featured in international and regional publications like “Forbes,” French “Vogue” and “Emirates Women,” was appointed as a consultant by the Chairman of The Jockey Club Saudi Arabia by HRH Prince Bandar Al Faisal. She helped work on the conceptualisation of The Saudi Cup, as well as curating events for Riyadh and Taif seasons.