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06/04/2013

Graduation party, Saudi style

Disneyland paris

Much to celebrate: Disneyland Paris. (Michel Spingler/AP)

Most people would be happy with a low-key dinner or maybe a party for friends but Prince Fahd al Saud celebrated earning his university degree by holding a three-day extravaganza at Disneyland Paris at a cost of $20 million. 

Euro Disney told AFP that entire sections of the theme park were closed at the end of May for the party which featured rare characters such as Jessica Rabbit. The prince invited 60 guests. 

We have become pretty jaded over extreme displays of wealth but the lavish spending habits of the Saudi royals still have the ability to make people pause. 

Fahd is the son of the late crown prince Nayef who was the interior minister and his third wife Princess Maha who is from the powerful Sudairi clan. Maha herself has a well-established fondness for luxurious spending which has got her into trouble. In March a French court ordered that her assets in France be seized to pay off her creditors. She fled her luxury Paris hotel in the middle of the night to avoid paying a $8 million bill accumulated over a six-month stay in 2012.  

Hamida Ghafour is a foreign affairs reporter at the Star. She has lived and worked in the Middle East and Asia for more than 10 years and is the author of a book on Afghanistan. Follow her on Twitter @HamidaGhafour

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60 people at a theme park would make it feel like a ghost town, I would think.

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