Large portraits of the king and the country's founder hang in hotel lobbies across the city.
Hajj is the most important ritual among Muslims in the world, as nearly all Muslims should perform it at least once in a lifetime, if they have the means to do so.
At least 2 million Muslims are expected in the Saudi Arabian holy city before the end of the pilgrimage on Monday.
Saudi authorities are also faced with the daunting task of ensuring sufficient logistics and taking appropriate security measures, as well as effective dissemination of information for all of its visitors.
Murderous jihadist attacks across the world in recent years will be on the minds of many pilgrims, especially those from Iraq and Syria where the IS has suffered a series of setbacks.
World Health Organization cholera expert Dominique Legros said Saudi Arabia has avoided cholera outbreaks for many years due to reinforced surveillance and early detection.
Others have gone further, saying that by promoting Sheikh Abdullah, the Saudis were attempting to delegitimize Qatar's current emir.
Saudi authorities say they are ready for any eventuality. This, he said, is germane to the successful implementation of the 2017 hajj operations.More news: FDA Approves CAR T-Cell Therapy for Leukemia
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Only 70 people have crossed the land border between Qatar and Saudi for the five-day Muslim pilgrimage, according to the state-owned National Human Rights Committee (NHRC).
Muhammad, however, did not disclose the names of the deceased, saying that the commission would first reach out to the families of the deceased before revealing their identity to the public.
Besides the deadly stampede, the 2015 Hajj was also marred by a crane accident at the Great Mosque that left 100 people dead. Iran, which lost 464 pilgrims in the stampede, immediately used the disaster to call for an independent body to take over administering the hajj.
The hajj took place a year ago under the shadow of the two countries' rivalry.
In Malaysia for example, the waiting list for the average person under the quota is an estimated 94 years, according to an official from Lembaga Tabung Haji, a government-linked financial organization that provides savings services to Muslims planning pilgrimages to Mecca.
Pilgrims then walk or run between the mountains of Safa and Marwah seven times, which represents when Ibrahim's wife Hagar did the same when searching for water.