Photography Television

Visiting an Old Village Hidden in Rumaithiya

Last year while visiting the set of the Netflix show, The Exchange, I saw an old Kuwaiti village being constructed for another show. The village was looking amazing and very realistic, but I couldn’t take photos to share since the show hadn’t been released yet.

A few weeks ago I remembered the village again and got in touch with Beyond Dreams, the studio behind The Exchange to see if I could pass by to take some photos. Turned out my timing was perfect since they had built an even larger village since my last visit, and it was for a new show that is airing on TOD and beINDrama this Ramadan called “Zaman Alajaj” (Time of Dust).

The village is huge, if you stand on one side you can’t see the other, there are alleyways, animals, and even a small farm with real vegetables growing. There is a street filled with shops, a village square, homes, and even a graveyard. So many details and all very realistically reproduced.

What is even more incredible is that the village is located in the suburbs, and not out in the middle of the desert. So one minute you’re stuck in traffic, and the next you’re walking around an old village with no cars in sight. The feeling is very bizarre, and because there are no tall buildings outside the wall, it really adds to the feeling that you’re in a village in the middle of nowhere.

All the structures are real and functional, so it not just a facade. If you open a door there is something behind it, it could be someone’s home, or it could be a shop selling spices, there will be something. The details are all there, and I remember it was the same thing when I visited the set of The Exchange.

Zaman Alajaj is being produced by Abdullah Boushahri, and the same team behind The Exchange. The story follows Wijdan (played by Mona Hussein), a woman seeking refuge from her abusive father and ends up infiltrating this simple village. It’s a drama with an intense and suspenseful storyline filled with conspiracies and conflict.

The series was produced for TOD and so will air exclusively on TOD and beINDrama. If you want to check out the trailer, it’s now up on

Note: This is a private set built for the show and so it not accessible to the public.

4 replies on “Visiting an Old Village Hidden in Rumaithiya”

Speaking of sets, I think Shaheed Park would be a perfect setting for a scene or two in a sci-fi movie, it looks so futuristic and other-worldly.

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