Al-Mayassa bint Hamad bin Khalifa Al-Thani

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Sheikha Al Mayassa Al Thani
HE Sheikha Al Mayassa.png
Sheikha Al Mayassa Al-Thani
Born Al Mayassa bint Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani
1983 (age 31)
Doha, Qatar
Residence Doha, Qatar
Occupation Founder and Chairperson of Qatar Museums, Doha Film Institute
Religion Islam
Spouse(s) Jassim bin Abdul Aziz Al-Thani (m. 2006)
Children 3 sons
Parent(s) Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani, Mozah bint Nasser Al Missned
Monarchical styles of
Sheikha Al-Mayassa
Emblem of Qatar.svg
Reference style Her Excellency
Spoken style Your Excellency
Alternative style Ma'am

Sheikha Al-Mayassa bint Hamad bin Khalifa Al-Thani (born 1983) is the sister of the Emir of Qatar, Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani. Her father Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al-Thani is the former Emir, and mother Sheikha Mozah bint Nasser Al-Missned, the former First Lady. In April 2014, Time named her one of the 100 most influential people in the world.[1] She was ranked by Forbes as one of the world's 100 most powerful women.[2] Sheikha Al Mayassa was rated the most influential person in art by ArtReview on their annual Power 100.[3] Bloomberg reported her acquisition budget on behalf of Qatar Museums is estimated at $1 billion annually.[4]

Sheikha Al Mayassa is the Chairperson of Qatar Museums, whose CEO Edward Dolman previously served as Chairman of Christie's International, and responsible for cultivating significant cultural events in the region.[2] She has been profiled extensively in the NY Times.[5]

Sheikha Al Mayassa is said to have purchased the most expensive painting in the world, Paul Gaugin's When Will You Marry? in 2015 for $300 million,[6] Cezanne's The Card Players in 2012 for $250 million, as well as Mark Rothko's White Center (Yellow, Pink and Lavender on Rose) in 2007 for $70 million, a Damien Hirst pill cabinet for $20 million and works by Jeff Koons, Andy Warhol, Roy Lichtenstein and Francis Bacon. She has staged major exhibitions in Qatar with Takashi Murakami, Richard Serra and Damien Hirst (underwriting his exhibit first at the Tate Modern prior to opening in Doha). The Sheikha oversees a vast array of museums including the I. M. Pei designed Museum of Islamic Art, Doha. A Jean Nouvel designed National Museum of Qatar and an Orientalist Museum by Herzog & de Meuron are slated to open in the coming years.[5]

Sheikha Al Mayassa is also Chairperson of the Doha Film Institute which partnered with the Tribeca Film Festival to produce several annual iterations of the Doha Tribeca Film Festival. In February 2013, they announced a $100 million feature film fund with Participant Media, a production company founded by billionaire Jeffrey Skoll, who was the first employee and also first president of internet auction firm eBay.[7]

Education and career[edit]

Sheikha Al-Mayassa graduated with a B.A. degree in Political Science and Literature from Duke University (Durham, North Carolina, USA) in 2005.[8] While at Duke, she was Vice President of the International Association, Vice President of Hiwar (an organization to promote political dialogue),[citation needed] and a delegate to the 2001-2002 Model United Nations.

During the 2003-2004 school year, she studied at the University of Paris 1 Pantheon-Sorbonne, and the Institut d'Études Politiques de Paris (known as Sciences Po).

Upon graduation, Sheikha al-Mayassa established the NGO Reach Out To Asia. This organization is a philanthropic effort inspired by the desire to help the victims of recent natural disasters in Asia by providing quality education; it also celebrated the occasion of the 2006 Asian Games in Doha.

Doha Film Institute[edit]

The Doha Film Institute is producing Salma Hayek's upcoming animated adaptation of Khalil Gibran's classic novel The Prophet, with "Lion King" director Roger Allers co-ordinating the process.[9] DFI is also credited as a production company on several other films, including Just Like a Woman starring Sienna Miller,[10] The Reluctant Fundamentalist directed by Mira Nair which opened 69th Venice International Film Festival,[11] and Kanye West's Cruel Summer, a short film which shot in Doha and premiered during the 2012 Cannes Film Festival.[12]


Sheikha Mayassa's mother Sheikha Mozah is responsible for opening campuses of several world-class academic institutions in Doha, including Virginia Commonwealth University, Carnegie Mellon University, Georgetown University, Northwestern University, Texas A&M University and Weill Cornell Medical College.

Her brother Sheikh Mohammed bin Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani is the Chairman of Qatar's winning bid to stage the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Doha.

Sheikha Al Mayassa's father founded Al Jazeera and established the Qatar Investment Authority, a sovereign wealth fund to manage the country's oil and natural gas surpluses.[13] The Qatar Investment Authority and its subsidiaries have acquired many businesses abroad, including London's iconic department store Harrods from entrepreneur Mohammed Al-Fayed,[14] Paris based department store Printemps,[15] French football club Paris Saint-Germain F.C.,[16] a 10% stake in Porsche,[17] a 75% stake in film studio Miramax which they acquired from Disney,[18] a 2% stake in media conglomerate and Universal Music Group parent company Vivendi,[19] a $100 million USD investment in Chernin Group - whose founder Peter Chernin was COO of News Corp and President of Fox,[20] a 1% stake in luxury goods manufacturer Louis Vuitton Moët Hennessy,[21] a 6% stake in Credit Suisse,[22] a 12.6% stake in Barclays[23] and several other major companies. They also backed Glencore's $31 billion USD takeover bid for Xstrata.[24] Qatar is the largest property owner in London with their holdings including Europe's tallest building The Shard, Olympic Village and Park Lane's InterContinental Hotel.[25] They also own several hotels in Cannes including the Majestic Hotel, Grand Hyatt Cannes Hôtel Martinez and Carlton Hotel.[26] QIA was considered to have one of the leading bids in the sales of both Anschutz Entertainment Group[27] and Hulu.[28] As of May 2013, it was reported the Investment Authority is in talks to purchase Neiman Marcus and Bergdorf Goodman.[29]

Marriage and children[edit]

Sheikha Al-Mayassa married Sheikh Jassim bin Abdul Aziz Al-Thani at Al-Wajbah Palace, Doha, on 6 January 2006. Sheikh Jassim is an elder son of Sheikh Abdul Aziz bin Jassim bin Hamad Al-Thani, making them second cousins. Together they have three sons:

  • Sheikh Mohammed
  • Sheikh Hamad
  • Sheikh Abdulaziz



  1. ^ Takashi Murakami (2014-04-23). "Sheika al-Mayassa bint Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani". Retrieved 2014-05-13. 
  2. ^ a b "Board of Trustees". Qatar Museum Athority. Retrieved 2014-05-13. 
  3. ^ Power 100
  4. ^ Nayeri, Farah (2013-10-23). "Sheikha Mayassa Tops Art Power List for $1 Billion Spend". Bloomberg. Retrieved 2014-05-13. 
  5. ^ a b Qatari Riches Are Buying Art World Influence
  6. ^ Reyburn, Scott (2015-02-05). "SGauguin Painting Is Said to Fetch $300 Million". NY Times. Retrieved 2015-02-09. 
  7. ^ 13 February 2013 Deadline - Berlin: Participant Media, Doha Film Institute Launch Five-Year $100M Feature Film Fund
  8. ^ "Mixing Oil and Hollywood: Tribeca Festival Expands to the Persian Gulf". The New York Times. 23 October 2009. Retrieved 3 November 2010. 
  9. ^ 23 February 2012 The Hollywood Reporter - Salma Hayek and Doha Film Institute to Adapt Khalil Gibran’s 'The Prophet' into Animated Movie
  10. ^ 17 July 2013 IMDB - Just Like a Woman
  11. ^ 30 August 2013 BBC News - The Reluctant Fundamentalist
  12. ^ 23 May 2012 The Hollywood Reporter - Cannes 2012: Kanye West Debuts Groundbreaking Film With Kim Kardashian, Jay-Z in Attendance
  13. ^ 17 July 2013 - Qatar Investment Authority
  14. ^ 8 May 2010 Reuters - Qatar investor buys UK department store Harrods
  15. ^ 8 April 2013 The Wall Street Journal - Qatari Investors to Buy Printemps
  16. ^ 24 May 2013 NY Times - Qatari Hopes for Paris Saint-Germain Meet Reality
  17. ^ 17 June 2013 Reuters - Qatar sells back 10 percent Porsche stake to founding families
  18. ^ 21 January 2013 The Hollywood Reporter - Ron Tutor Sells His Miramax Stake
  19. ^ 21 March 2012 Bloomberg -Vivendi Says Shareholder Qatar Holding Raised its Stake to 2%
  20. ^ 8 November 2012 LA Times - Chernin Group receives $100-million investment from Qatar Holding
  21. ^ 16 March 2012 Vogue - Slice Of LVMH
  22. ^ 14 February 2011 Bloomberg - Credit Suisse Raises $6.2 Billion From Qatar Holding, Olayan
  23. ^ 5 February 2013 Reuters - Barclays ducks Qatar questions, takes $1.6 billion mis-selling hit
  24. ^ 15 November 2012 NY Times - Qatar Wealth Fund Backs Glencore’s Bid for Xstrata
  25. ^ 21 June 2013 The Independent - Sheikh Hamad bin Jassim bin Jaber al-Thani: Meet the man who bought London
  26. ^ 15 December 2011 Pie Mag - Cannes Carlton hotel sold to Qatar investor for €450m
  27. ^ 13 November 2012 NY Post - AEG shoots for stars with up to $10B sale
  28. ^ 9 June 2013 Arabian Business - Qatar among bidders for US online TV firm
  29. ^ 31 May 2013 NY Post - Qatar Investment Authority in talks to buy Neiman Marcus

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