To call HRH Prince Sultan Bin Salman Abdulaziz Al-Saud a renaissance man would be a serious understatement. By the time he was this writer’s age (31), Prince Sultan had spent some odd ten years as a pilot; served as Deputy Director for the Saudi Arabian Olympic Information Committee at the 1984 Olympics in Los Angeles, California; served as Acting Director of the Department of Advertising at the Ministry of Information; had become an officer in the Royal Saudi Air Force; and, oh yeah, had flown into space.

So, yes, as most of you probably remember from school, Prince Sultan is the one we all read about; the first Arab, first Muslim, first royalty and first (and only) Saudi to go into space. While many would — having conquered space — just stop there, Prince Sultan was only getting started. He has been the President & Chairman of the Board of the Saudi Commission for Tourism and Antiquities (SCTA) since the establishment of the Commission in 2000, spearheading all efforts within that domain. On a related note, his reconstruction project of the old Al-‘Udhaibat farmhouse outside of Riyadh spurred interest among architects to preserve old architecture while maintaining
modern living standards.

“When my son asked me, ‘Why are you doing all this?’ I replied, ‘I’m doing it for you, and for a generation that needs its heritage to maintain its balance.’” — Prince Sultan bin Salman, regarding the Al-‘Udhaibat project.

Somewhere in between all his activities helping out with the many charitable and humanitarian organizations in the Kingdom, Prince Sultan also found time to undergo the very first glider expedition over Saudi Arabia. “If it is going to take adventures to get people’s attention, may it be so just to get people to start getting the feel for gliding and to feel the wind.”

We managed to score an interview with HRH Prince Sultan and ask him about his incredible life, some of its highlights, and any advice he had for the burgeoning youth of the region, eager to live, explore and change things for the better.