Last month, a Saudi Prince named Fahd al-Saud threw himself the ultimate graduation bash when he spent nearly 20-million dollars to rent out all of Disneyland for himself and 60 friends. It is common for graduating seniors to take over-night trips to the park to celebrate, but never has anyone done it quite like this.
There’s one catch, however. Al-Saud did not book the iconic Disneyland in southern California, but instead Euro-Disney, which many readers may not even know exists. Euro-Disney has failed to turn a profit a single year of its 20-year inception. In the past six months alone, the park lost over 100-million. Al-Saud may not have needed to bother renting out the park. If he had just gone normally, he may have come to find the park was already empty.
The concept of the playboy Saudi Prince –seriously, how many Princes can one country have? – is familiar to the world, and extravagant celebrations like these are to be expected. The question is why Saudi Princes get away with spending like this, while other affluent, powerful children do not. Imagine if Barack Obama spent millions of dollars to thrown a similar bash for his two daughters; the public backlash would be massive.
Saudi Arabia is well off in comparison to other Middle-Eastern countries, but it is hardly an economic utopia. A quarter of Saudis live below the poverty line, and the gap between the upper and lower class continues to widen. The Saudi Government already spends billions in an attempt to help the growing poor population; who knows how many needy families could have benefited from a twenty-million dollar donation from the Prince himself.
But seriously, Euro-Disney? Ewww. Next time al-Saud should save some money and rent out a bowling alley instead.