Thursday, February 28, 2008

Rents for commercial properties in Dubai continue to soar

As per reports, Dubai continued to witness huge demand for office space last year, with the emirate reflecting one of the highest global rental yields for commercial premises, ranging 17 to 18 percent.

Asteco, in its quarterly market research, reported that there was a huge increase in capital values, particularly, in locations where the new buildings were nearing completion.

The rents for office space grew by five percent on an average in comparison to the last quarter. The highest rent rates were noticed in Oud Metha and Sheikh Zayed Road, with 6 and 12 percent respectively, as per the fourth quarter report of Asteco.

When compared to the rates during the corresponding period in 2006, the office rents in Dubai last year saw a considerable increase of 44 percent, and the occupancy rates continued to touch 97 to 99 percent, the report revealed.

The Director at the Research Valuation and Consultancy at Asteco, John Allen, says "The increase in prices indicate the fact that the commercial sector of Dubai does not have a liquid secondary market at present. The limited delivery of new office premises over the last couple of years has brought about an undersupply in the market, resulting in strong surge in office rents and sales prices."

Asteco anticipates that the commercial units would witness another surge in prices, as the buildings near completion next year. However, according to Asteco, a shortfall in supply of of nearly 18million square feet of office space would be experienced next year due to delay in construction.

"We expect that landlords would get more competitive with increase in supply. More high quality finishes that are being offered, will be tailor-made to suit the requirement of tenants, and most important, the rents will stabilize reflecting true market values," Allen said.

A new factor that will have a major impact in the commercial property market during this year, will be, the implementation of the new 'green rules', which would become effective this year.

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Construction likely to commence this year on Nakheel's Greece project

Island of Greece Nakheel
The Island of Greece, in Nakheel's mega project, 'The World', will turn out to be a luxurious boutique resort, with construction due to commence in December 2008.

Speaking during the launch of Greece, Baron Jean Van Gysel de Meise, said "The World is an ideal location as it is a little haven located away from the stress of Dubai."

Spread across 45,000 square feet of space, Greece will have 65 units on the whole, worth about $170 million, and an estimated sales value of $200 million. Investors will be given access to the property for two months in a year. They will also receive 50% of the gross revenue of the property for the remaining 10 months.

According to Van Gysel, the construction will begin next December and the hotel would be open by 2010 December. He said, V…..Greece on 'the World' would be the launch-pad for boutique brands in the GCC, as other projects are currently underway in Oman and Abu Dhabi. The resort will have a marina that spreads across 1000 foot, with moorings for 16 private boats, apart from several restaurants and a spa.

Van Gysel said "Service in Dubai is not up to the mark, in comparison to the five-star services that one experiences in other parts of Europe. V….Greece aims to be a benchmark for service in Dubai."

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Boris Becker Tower unveiled in Dubai

A leading German real estate developer and affiliate of Alternative Capital Investments, ACI real estate, has announced completion of its Dh.2.2 billion worth 'Triology Project', through the launch of 'Boris Becker Business Tower'.

The Boris Becker Business Tower includes three commercial towers with each being 19 storey high, covering an area of 250,000 square feet in area and a gross commercial space of 452,000 square feet.

Speaking during the occasion of the launch, the tennis legend, Boris Becker, stated that the Dubai city, with its state-of-the-art-infrastructure matches the offerings of this tower, and the regional investment climate is founded on valid economic fundamentals.

He continued, "I have been fortunate enough to have a career, but, just as in any athlete's life, the end is inevitable. So now, I can plan my second career, and travel to most exciting destinations like Dubai."

The ACI Managing Director, Robin Lohmann revealed that ACI plans to expand its portfolio with new projects expected at Ajman and Abu Dhabi.

"We have long term commitments in the UAE market, which is reflected in our recent project launches and branch expansion to Abu Dhabi. The initial five projects on Reem Island in Abu Dhabi are due for launch shortly, and another ACI office will be open in Doha, towards the second half of this year. These developments provide investors with the opportunity to participate in a city, known and respected throughout the world."

The ACI real estate project, The Sports Legends Triology, is backed by Nikki Lauda, Michael Schumacher and Boris Becker who have lent their names to the project.

The tower is worth around Dh.500 million, with all the units already sold out. The project is due for completion by 2009 or 2010, in Business Bay.

Monday, February 25, 2008

ACI plans expansion in UAE property market

ACI, the real estate firm that is an affiliate of Alternative Capital Investments, has revealed its plans to expand into Dubai, with its Dh.10billion worth development portfolio of new projects, and also make its foray into Abu Dhabi and Ajman property markets.

The Managing Director of ACI, Robin Loh-mann, said "There will be a total of seven buildings in the Abu Dhabi project, with first five likely to be launched shortly on Reem Island. We plan to diversify. We are on the look out for strategic alliances with major players in Abu Dhabi and Ajman. We will also focus on the Dubai Waterfront and Dubai Laggons this year."

Lohmann said that the company also holds another development on The World, and are keen on entering the Ajman market. He opinioned that all emirates are likely to benefit from the UAE market, as the Abu Dhabi market is picking up at a rapid pace.

He continued "Abu Dhabi is being developed in a manner that is a little different from Dubai. They are trying to include a little culture also in their projects, with things like the Guggenheim and the Louvre. They are trying to do things differently."

Lohmann said property prices in Abu Dhabi have nearly doubled during the past seven to eight months.

"We are eyeing on Abu Dhabi, as it is a totally different market," he said.

As for Ajman, Lohmann said that the development would begin with one residential and one commercial tower. The value of the Ajman project is yet to be revealed.

ACI is also planning to open another office in Doha during second half of the year. The 'Trilogy Towers', worth Dh.2.2bn, involving German sporting legends, Michael Schumacher and Nikki Lauda, will conclude on Sunday, after the launch of the Boris Becker Business Tower.

Dubai records high real estate sales of Dh.2.28bn

The real estate sales in Dubai during the week touched Dh.2.28bn, according to Dubai Land Department.

The property transactions including villa, land and apartment sales were high between 17th and 20th February 2008. The land sales, particularly, was the highest on 20th Feb, 2008. The total amount of transactions on 20th February, alone, touched Dh.1.13million.

The total value of land sales during the period was Dh.2.17 billion, while the apartments recorded a sale of Dh.92.2 millions, and villas recorded a sale of Dh.9.5 million.

Highest land sale was registered at Emirates Hills First (Dh. 380 million), followed by Al Hamriya (Dh.350 million).

The total value of mortgage sales during the 19th and 20th February was Dh.998.07 million

Saturday, February 23, 2008

Sobha Group breaks ground for their 'Daffodil' project in Dubai

dafodil sobha
Leading Indian real estate developer, Sobha Group, has broken ground for its first residential development, the 'Sobha Daffodil' in Dubai.

Located in Jumeirah Village, the Sobha Daffodil comprises 178 apartments, ranging from studios to three bedrooms. The four and ten storey complex offers a contemporary living environment featuring a roof top garden, large temperature-controlled swimming pool, and a Club House which is completely equipped.
Followed by the ground breaking, building work has commenced on Sobha Daffodil at Jumeirah Village.

The Vice-Chairman of the group, Ajay Rajendran said "Sobha Daffodil marks our foray into residential real estate market in the Middle East. We are pleased to celebrate its ground breaking today. Now that construction has begun, we shall work continuously to ensure timely completion of the project. This is our pledge to all buyers, who are keen on taking delivery of their new homes."

Sobha is striving to ensure that its families would have their home in 'Sobha Daffodil' before end of 2009.

The Sobha Group is on its way to announce a regional portfolio of more than Dh.3.5bn towards mid-2008, including a range of residential and commercial properties at prime locations in Dubai.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Dubai's Falcon City on its way to create records

Dubai's Falconcity is on its way to create records, as few of its attractions are bound to be bigger than the original landmarks.

Falcon city Dubai
With the total project value worth Dh.7.5million and being shaped like a Falcon, the project incorporates not only residential units, hotels and theme park, but also imitation of world-famous landmarks, which include Pyramids of Giza, Eiffel Tower, Venice, Hanging Gardens of Babylong, Taj Mahal, and leaning Tower of Pisa.

The Eiffel Tower will be 20 meters taller than that of original in Paris. The largest pyramid will be 40 storeys and 150 meters in height, which is slightly taller than Khufu, the largest of three pyramids in Egypt.

The Chairman of Falconcity, Salem Al Moosa, said "The Great Wall of China will stretch 1.7kms approximately, but, this figure could change based on developments within the theme park. The wall will be higher than a three-storey building, but, on completion, it will be more than quadruple the length of an Olympic running track. The theme park will stretch over an area of 4 million square feet."
Falcon city pyramid

Al Moosa says that there will be two museums within the smallest pyramid, which "honour the great civilizations of the world. The Theme park will be one of its kind, and with our own movies and characters, we too can have a great civilization. In March, something, further big could be expected."

Rakeen's 'Bab Al Bahr' project progressing as scheduled

Rakeen, one of the most dynamic real estate developers in the region, has revealed that construction of its international standard apartment units in 'Bab al Bahr', the idyllic resort development on Al Marjan Island, is on track. Rakeen is one among the.

Piling is underway at present, while the apartment buildings are on its way to completion by the fourth quarter of 2009, revealed an official spokesman.

'Bab Al Bahr' (Your gateway to island living), the Dh.1.2 billion development, comprises 710 apartments in five buildings, that are available for freehold purchase. An additional 120 apartments are open for timeshare ownership.

Bab Al Bahr island Ras Al Khaima The confirmation that the construction is progressing as scheduled, indicates a vital step in the development of the project that will finally encompass the residential buildings, a hotel, a timeshare building, an office tower, and a shopping mall, rendering an exclusive lifestyle.

The Client Representative and Project Manager, Wahid Attalla, who is also the CEO of Spectrum Consultants, said "Available directly from Rakeen, with 100 percent freehold ownership, the Bab Al Bahr apartments are housed in six stunning buildings, with a dramatic architecture, complementing the natural beauty of the island. Open private beachfronts, landscaped surroundings and 360-degree sea views, add to the feeling of openness and the freedom that Bab Al Bahr adds to daily life."

The Bab Al Bahr hotel and timeshare apartments will be operated and managed by B&G Hotels and Resorts, a premium hotel and resort management company. The units will be exlusively sold by the leading property management and real estate company, Asteco, while, 90 percent mortgages will be offered to buyers of Bab Al Bahr apartments by the Union National Bank.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Dubai World Central Phase II land sales registrations begins at IPS 2008

Registrations have commenced for the Phase II of the freehold land sales at Dubai World Central, the urban land project in Jebel Ali. The registrations are open at the International Property Show (IPS) 2008 being held in the Dubai International Exhibition Center, between the 17th and 19th February 2008.

Actual land sales for the plots with sizes ranging from 5000 to 12000 Sq. Mts., will however, commence only next month.
Dubai World Central
With over 184 hectares of land, being available in Phase 2, the Residential City of the DWC, the largest phase of the city, is expected to house around 53,000 people. The Phase 2 will have about 19 plots, meant for mixed-use, while 9 plots will be reserved for public and commercial purposes, such as malls, schools, hotels, mosques, health centers, fuel stations and parks.

The Dubai World Central, CEO, Khalid bin Harib, said "With the first phase of the project completely sold out last year, yielding sales worth Dh.2.5bn, the second phase has now produced about 700 potential customers. We expect the same response during the registration at the IPS Dubai event. "

Dubai's International Property Show 2008 kicks-off

Dubai's International Property Show (IPS) 2008 kicked off yesterday, at the Dubai International Exhibition Center, and real estate developers in Dubai expecting multi-billion dollar investments.

Shaikh Hasher Maktoum, the Dubai Director of Information, who inaugurated the event, said "The regional property sector and the IPS have grown by 50 percent this year, which indicates the excellent potential of real estate market in the region. With the event continuing to reflect the real landscape of this industry with huge potential, the show has seen the presence of huge and diverse projects from all over the world, for years."

This year, the event expects to draw in atleast 27,000 visitors and exhibitors from about 200 real estate firms all over the globe.

IPS 2008 is expected to be the biggest in the region, probably due to high boost in investor confidence in the property market, due to the establishment of RERA (Real Estate Regulatory Authority). Few countries like Russia, Panama, Ireland, Iran and Saudi Arabia, will be participating in the event, this year, for the first time.

Hussain Sajwani, the Chairman of Damac Holding, the region's leading private sector real estate developer, said "This is another opportunity for us to display our world-class luxury projects and concepts. This is an opportunity for investors to learn in detail about our projects. This will be the right opportunity for the investors to learn more about the most luxurious real estate projects, such as Marina Bay in Abu Dhabi, Ocean Heights in Dubai, Al Jawharah in Jeddah, Business Heights in Amman or the Hyde Park in Cairo, among other luxurious projects of DAMAC."

The show is expected to conclude on 19th February 2008.

Monday, February 18, 2008

DCC to construct new tower in Meydan City

Dubai Contracting Company (DCC) has been awarded a contract to construct new mixed-use tower in the Meydan City.

Located in the heart of Dubai's urban frontier, the project includes a total built-up area of 300,000 square feet, dedicated to luxurious, residential, commercial, and office spaces.
Maydan City

The tower would form a significant contribution to the Meydan City development, which includes 26 storeys, with two basements, a ground level and five podium floors.

Meeting both professional and residential needs, the modern high-quality tower will depict the standards applied to all other DCC turnkey projects.

"Located just about 7kms from the Dubai International Airport, the Meydan City, is a major future hub for Dubai, with high expectations for the project," said the DCC Contracts Director, Ian Harper.

Aldar, Investment Holdings, signs deal for Al Khubeira

Aldar Properties, the real estate developer, has announced their Dh.1.2bn joint venture with Investment Holdings, a local company, to develop 'Al Khubeira' at its Al Raha Beach development.

The deal will develop an area of about 50,000 square meters. The Al Khubeira development will include waterfront villas and residential towers, open to both nationals and expatriates. Being developed on a reclaimed land at the Al Raha Beach complex, it occupies an area of 6.8 million square meters, with a total built-up area of 12 million square meters.

Al-Kubeira, which is due for completion during the first quarter of 2011, will have a world-class interior design, including ceramic, stone, timber, finishes, providing natural setting for residents.
Al-Khubeira will be a gated community, with state-of-the-art video entry system, a concierge serve and CCTV security.

The Al Raha Beach development is a beachfront project that is currently under development in Abu Dhabi, along the Dubai-Abu Dhabi highway. This development with be a new city district, expected to serve as a new gateway to Abu Dhabi city, housing 120,000 people.

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Al Barakah announces aggressive expansion plans

Al Barakah, the latest real estate developer to enter Dubai property market, with a portfolio of Dh.3bn to Dh.5 bn, is on an aggressive expansion plan, aiming to be one of the top ten developers in the region, within the next couple of years.

According to Imran Khan, the Chief Executive of the company, the company has established new values to the property industry. Now, with the new RERA regulations in place, it has been developed into a level playing field, wherein all developers require being transparent and accountable.

The first acquisition of Al Barakah was the Sanali business tower in Dubailand, worth Dh.1.3bn, covering a floor space of one million square feet and a retail space of 100,000.

According to Khan, 80 percent of the office space, was sold in a three-day period in January, with an average price of Dh.1,150 to Dh.1,200 per square foot. Dubai, being the cheapest place in the world, will have to buy real estate per square foot. With more investors coming in, particularly from the Europe and US, at present, Al Barakah has more confidence in the market.

Groundbreaking for their first residential development, Crimson Court, at the Emirates City in Ajman, will begin in April, and is due to be complete by mid-2010. The project value is Dh.150 million, and covers 381,000 square feet of residential space.

The first series of project will begin in the next three to six months, with a total amount of Dh.3bn to Dh.5bn.

Khan mentioned that with Ajman, catching up at a rapid pace with Dubai, at half the price, Al Barakah can offer affordable high-quality housing for the low income group, with easy access to Dubai.

Dubai Properties to lease commercial, residential and retail units

Dubai Properties, the developer owned by Dubai government, have announced their plans to launch about 5000 commercial, residential and retail units from a vast range of projects for leasing this year.

Apart from this, Dubai Properties will open about 100 outlets at 'The Walk' in Jumeirah Beach Residence by April, including Mothercare, Fat Face, Starbucks, Subway, Boots, Damas, Giordano, Bata, Tips & Toes, and Al Rasasi. An additional 300 outlets will be opened by June, says a company statement.

The Chief Executive, Mohammad Bin Braik, said "Apart from developing unique communities, the Dubai Properties remains committed in ensuring the timely release of its completed units. Following the huge success last year, we look forward to a year of massive business expansion and project handovers."

He continued that, the commercial and residential units, and the launch of other new projects, will meet the increasing demand of the emirate. In the meanwhile, DP will lease about 2568 units out of the 2611 units, available in various areas in Dubai, including, Cordoba Villas, JBR, Dubai HealthCare City, Al Quoz Community, Housing and DP staff accommodation.

In 2007, the jumeirah Beach Residence was the first freehold project to be completed, when about 6500 apartments across 36 residential towers, were delivered, housing more than 2000 families.

The year 2008 will be another milestone for Dubai Properties, with 5028 flats, and villas, being added to its leasing portfolio in Mirdif areas, and additional units in the Office Park Building, Executive Towers, and Al Quoz Community Housing. With this, the total number of units for leasing at Dubai Properties will touch 7600 in number.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Masdar City - the 'no-carbon' urban district

Masdar, the State-controlled Abu Dhabi Future Energy, has announced it would cost $22billion to develop a "no-carbon" urban district, which it plans in the UAE.

Masdar City
The Masdar City, located on the edge of Abu Dhabi, will house 50,000 people and 1500 businesses on completion, although no cars will be allowed.

The Masdar CEO, Sultan Al-Jaber, when speaking on the occasion of ground-breaking ceremony, told to the press, that Abu Dhabi, being the world's fifth largest oil exporter, will invest $4billion of equity in the project, and borrow some of the rest.

He added, that the company plans to monetize all carbon emission reductions, and such an innovative financing has never been applied on the scale of entire city. The license to emit the carbon, which Masdar City will not produce, will be sold, and the money will be utilized to fund the development.

Masdar City will be built in seven phases, including educational and research institutes, laboratories and production facilities for new advanced energy products. Masdar City will require a quarter of the typical power-generating capacity, needed for a small-size community. The water needs of the city will be 60% lesser, said the company.

Aldar's Al Raha project crosses major milestone

Aldar has achieved a major milestone in their Al Raha Beach development, with the eastern precinct protected by a completed sea wall.

Raha Beach Development
The Al Raha Beach project, comprises 11 precincts, with a total development area of 12 million square meters. Each of these precinct or village is unique, and stands apart from its neighbouring village in the development.

The Chief Operating Officer, Ronald S. Barrot said "Al Raha Beach Development has made steady and resounding progress, and we are pleased to witness this much anticipated forward move of the waterfront development to achieve this milestone. Soletanche Bachy - NSCC has done an excellent job and has met all challenges created by this fast-track project."

Followed by the completion of this milestone, the basement excavation has been progressed at the building site, followed by ground slab construction.

Covering about 570 hectares of land, the Al Raha Beach development will be the new gate way to the Capital.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Al Osaimi launches The Dusit Emirates Saray at Palm Jumeirah

Al Osaimi Investments and Real Estate, a Kuwaiti developer, on Sunday, launched Dh.1.5bn flagship development, 'The Dusit Emirates Saray' at the Palm Jumeirah, Dubai.

Dusit Emirates Saray in Palm Jumeirah
The development, which spreads across one million square feet of land, along 11.5kms of the crescent of Palm Jumeirah, comprises three projects on the whole: 'The Dusit Devarana' - a seven-star Indian themed hotel with 116 rooms spreading across 26,000 square feet of space, 'The Dusit Thani' - a five-star Moroccan-themed resort with 292 rooms spread across 34,000 square feet of space, and 'The Residence' - 178 Arabian-themed freehold units spreading across 57,000 square feet of space. The development will also have a 51,000 square feet size basement.

'The Dusit Thani' apart from the 292 guest rooms, will comprise suites, restaurants and a business center, will have three pools around the Palm Lagoon, will comprise 10 freestanding chalets and business center.

The high-light of the development will be the Arabian-themed 178 freehold units of 'The Residence', comprising two-storey townhouses, three-bedroom penthouses and apartments, a spacious terrace, pool, garden and parking for each unit, with maximum exclusivity for residential investors. The development will also include four freestanding restaurants and water sports facility.

The project will be complete towards the first quarter of 2010. The sale of the project, which began yesterday, will move to Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and other GCC countries after three days.

Al Raha Gardens, Phase-one completed

The leading real estate developer in Abu Dhabi, Aldar Properties, has announced completion of their first phase of Al Raha Gardens, a residential community in Abu Dhabi.

Al Raha Gardens Abu Dhabi
The first phase comprises 280 villas, which has been already sold, and is now partially occupied. The company has also completed 15 million safe hours on-site, without any accidents, revealed the company officials.

"Al Raha Gardens is one among the most prestigious residential developments of Aldar, which offers the first freehold properties to nationals in Abu Dhabi and UAE. We, as developers, respect the heritage of our Emirate, and have introduced two schools and a kindergarten, ensuring that Emirati customers get to enjoy a premium integrated lifestyle," said Ronald Barott, CEO of Aldar.

The town houses and villas are available on a freehold basis to UAE nationals. The handing over of keys to these spacious family dwellings, began during August 2007, and at present, 37 are occupied with 121 handed over to purchasers.

There is an ongoing construction in the remaining 1100 villas, and it is expected to be complete by 2009. The delivery of phase two is scheduled for February 2008.

The Head of health and safety division at Aldar, Andrew Broderick, said "Achieving these milestones has been a joint-effort from all those involved in the project, beginning from Senior management to site operatives, improving standards through education during all stages of construction."

The land bank of Aldar is the largest in Abu Dhabi with $60billion worth developments including the Al Raha Beach, Central Market, Noor Al Ain, Coconut Island, Yas Island project with Ferrari theme park and Warner Bros, and the Al Gurm Resort.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Luxury Villas, much in demand in Dubai

The exciting response for Polo Homes developed by Emaar Properties, one again strongly highlights the need for luxury lifestyles and exclusive living in Dubai.

Villas being more sought-after, the elite Polo Homes, recorded unprecedented home-owner interest, the company mentioned in their statement.

Polo homes Dubai
Located within the Arabian Ranches, the Polo Homes, which are just 71 in number, is one of the most luxurious residential communities, ever launched by Emaar. It is a true reflection of the vast range of home options that the company offers to satisfy customer requirements. The owners of Polo Homes get to enjoy various membership privileges at the Dubai Polo and Equestrian Club, inclusive of access to modern clubhouse with specialty restaurants and spa, international equestrian events, an array of leisure and recreational facilities, and two polo fields.

The Sales Director of Emaar, Saif Al Mansoori says "Villas sell like hot cakes in Dubai, and the overwhelming customer response for Polo Homes, highlights the demand for exclusive homes with distinctive lifestyles. Polo Homes signify Emaar's competency to deliver fresh perspective to property development. The development has been created focusing on the requirements of residents, who enjoy being linked to the current equestrian-related events at their doorstep."

Apart from the leisure facilities at the Equestrian Club, the residents also get easy access to the Arabian Ranches Golf Course, schools, retail outlets, children play areas, and health and fitness amenities, located in close proximity within the Arabian Ranches development.

The two-storey villas of the Polo Homes remain detached, and comprise five to six bedrooms that reflect Andalusian architecture with every minute detail being taken care off. The villas possess spacious central courtyards, terracotta roof tiles and are spacious enough for unique and inspirational landscaping opportunities.

Polo Homes can be accessed from three ring roads that lead to Sharjah and Abu Dhabi. It is located in close proximity to the main centers of Dubai, including, the Dubai Internet City, Dubai Media City, and the Jebel Ali Free Zone.

Aldar unveils Al Zeina development in Abu Dhabi

Aldar Properties has launched a new mixed-use development, Al Zeina, which forms a strategic gateway to the Al Raha Beach Development.

Al Zeina Abhu Dhabi
The piling work on Al Zeina is now complete, and laying the ground floor slabs in now being carried out. On completion, Al Zeina will house 1032 units on the whole, with 137 villas, 779 apartments and 116 townhouses. Apart from this, Al Zeina will comprise private boat moorings, local supermarket, retail high street, shops, a jetty restaurant, and various other food and beverage outlets located on the retail high street. Al Zeina also boasts of a 500 meter long public beach, landscaped gardens, open spaces, and luxurious shared gardens.

Each of the eleven precincts on Al Raha Beach is unique in character with specific attributes that keep it apart from the rest of the precincts. This, being a self-sustainable community, residents can also enjoy the options of engaging themselves with the wider development like the canal network with serviced water taxis, the light rail transportation, and carrying on with their regular eating, shopping and relaxing activities within their own premises.

Saturday, February 09, 2008

ACI launches Michael Schumacher business tower in Dubai

A prestigious business tower, "Michael Schumacher Business Avenue" has been launched by ACI Real Estate in Business Bay, Dubai. ACI is an affiliate of Alternative Capital Invest Gmbh, a leading alternative investment solution firm.

The tower is the second phase of the sports-branded real estate project by ACI, which is an ambitious plan to transform the Business Bay district into an architectural delight, defined by three spectacular towers, each of which are named after legendary sports super-stars.

The Business Avenue offer prominent office spaces with eye-catching views of Burj Dubai, the world's tallest building. The tower also houses the first Michael Schumacher Business Center that offers hi-tech facilities, with state-of-the-art design that matches international standards.
The launch of the business tower is the second in a series of three projects, introduced into the market by ACI. The Niki Lauda Twin Tower has been already launched last month, and Boris Becker Business Tower, is next in line to be launched in February 2008.

The tower was launched by the Seven-time Formula One World Champion, Michael Schumacher himself. Speaking on the occasion of the launch, the Managing Director of ACI, Robin Lohmann, said that only few properties in the world can boast about the direct involvement from the greatest F1 driver in the world. Michael Schumacher represents the commitment and energy to excel, and the ambition required for every business enterprise to reach the top position, and only a city like Dubai, befits such an association.

Emaar launches sales-event of Exclusive Collection of units

Emaar Properties is hosting a sales event, with an Exclusive Collection of high-end homes in Downtown Burj Dubai, the much-sought after community, described as 'new heart of Dubai'.

With a choice of homes, drawn across various residential projects, the sales event to be held on 9th February 2008 will be a rare opportunity to purchase a home, within established mixed-use community.

The selected units of the Exclusive Collection, are located within prime development of Downtown Burj Dubai, such as 'The Residences', 'South Ridge', 'Burj Dubai Lake Hotel & Serviced Apartments', 'The Old Town' and 'The Dubai Mall Hotel & Serviced Apartments', few of which, are ready to be occupied immediately.

A few homes offer a mix of amenities, including, swimming pools, health and fitness facilities, and children's play areas, along with high-end retail outlets all in close proximity, together demonstrating a prime investment opportunity.

The Downtown Burj Dubai, worth Dh.73bn is Emaar's flagship project, and is a mixed-use community, spread across 500 acres, combining residential, commercial, shopping, entertainment, hotel and leisure outlets in open green spaces, dotted with lakes and other water features.

Several homes at 'The Old Town' and 'The Residences' have been handed over to customers, and the luxury hotels within the area, offer the best in hospitality, to its guests and residents.

Rakaa forays into UAE property market with Dh.1bn project in Abu Dhabi

The real estate branch of a Saudi Arabian conglomerate, Rakaa Properties, has announced a Dh.1billion project, at Reem Island in Abu Dhabi.

The project, comprising three towers, two of which are residential towers and one commercial, will be developed for mixed-use. The average introductory price of the units is Dh.1550 per square foot. This freehold development is expected to be delivered towards end of 2010.
Dynasty tower

The COO of Rakaa Properties, Mahmoud Naji, when speaking during the Abu Dhabi Real Estate and Investment Show (IREIS) 2008, mentioned that the proposed towers, one of which is 'Falcon Crest', will have 139 units, while the other 'Dynasty' will have 125 units. The third tower, 'Marina tulip' will house 35 storeys, out of which 27 would be residential floors, and the rest eight floors will be commercial storeys. The construction is expected to begin soon.

This project in Abu Dhabi is Rakaa's maiden venture into UAE real estate business. At present, Rakaa has announced developments in Jordan and Saudi Arabia.

Falcon Crest
Established in 1990, Rakaa is a subsidiary of Rakaa Holding, and has developed a wide range of properties, that include, malls, residential apartments, office buildings, luxury villas, and farms and ranches in Saudi Arabia.

Thursday, February 07, 2008

Dubai realty market likely to be world's second most expensive, in 2008

The shortage of housing supply, coupled with unprecedented increase in realty prices in 2008, will make Dubai realty market, the second most expensive in the world, only next to West End of London, reports HC Securities Brokerage.

The Egypt-based brokerage, in its Economy Watch Bulletin, reported that increasing growth rates have enabled expatriates with the means to rent houses at high rates, and the situation is quite unlikely to be resolved this year too, as the market would continue to experience shortage in supply of housing units.

The caps by Government have been unable to address the surge in inflation caused due to rapid increase in rents across the region. The HC Securities state that with the GCC rents forecast, further set to increase by 20% this year, the rents in Dubai were capped at 15% in 2006, and the rates are lowered to 5% this December.

"However, the increase in rent rates is backfiring greatly on the rate of inflation. If the main reason behind mounting inflation is skyrocketing rent rates, we note that limiting the rent prices do not seem to have solved the problem," said HC Securities.

Dubai office space expected to double in 2008

The office space in Dubai will double this year, with an area expansion of 4.7million square meters between 2007 and 2010, reports Gulf News.

More than 250 companies from the US, Far East and Europe participated at the 'Office Exhibition 2008' held at Dubai International Exhibition and Convention Center, which will conclude today. They exhibited their innovative designs at the seventh edition of the exhibition, which was the largest.

In UAE alone, the office furniture market is already estimated to be between the range of $190m and $272m. However, this figure is expected to increase along with expanding office space, expected to increase the current supply of 2.4 million square million to three times that of the figure by 2010.

Wednesday, February 06, 2008

Land reclamation in Waterfront Island 30% complete

Master Developer Nakheel says it has reclaimed 30 percent of the 400 hectare island, out of the world's most ambitious urban development project, 'Waterfront'. With an area of 1.4billion square feet, that is twice the size of Hong Kong Island and bigger than Beirut and Manhattan, Waterfront, constitutes 65 percent of current land-bank of Nakheel.

Dubai Waterfront Project from Nakheel
Managing Director, Matt Joyce, said "Being twice the size of Hong Kong Island, it is 13 kilometers by 7.5 kilometers in size, and a monumental project. It is an entirely new city, master-planned from scratch on a blank canvas."

Waterfront has the capacity to house 1.5million people, creating about one million jobs on its completion. The first five phases of the project are complete with hard labour put in by 20000 odd workers and 3000 construction vehicles. Waterfront, on completion will have 250 individual communities.

The amount of land being reclaimed per month is about 3.52million cubic meters, which is sufficient to fill-up Wembley Stadium thrice. Infrastructure and civil works has already begun on the first phase (Madinat Al Arab), while the work on the Palm Cove Canal, stretching 8kms, running parallel to the coast is 65% complete.

With the work on Burj Dubai, the world's tallest building, nearing completion, Waterfront on the other end, is already planning to build one such tallest building in the world, Al Burj, in downtown Madinat Al Arab.

Amlak's investment portfolio exceeds Dh.4.5bn

One of the leading home financiers in Dubai, Amlak Finance, revealed that its real estate investment portfolio has grown by more than Dh.4.5bn, following the six million square feet of land acquisition from the Dubai Government.

amlak finance dubai
This newly acquired land, with a gross floor area of 8.5million square feet, is located at Al Warqa on the Emirates Road, and will be developed as a multi-purpose development, which would further strengthen Amlak's position as the lead real estate finance and investment company.

The new community in Al Warqa, namely Warqa Heights will have the capacity to house 40,000 people and comprise commercial, residential and retail space. The master-plan is currently finalzed by Tamdeen and Amlak, and the plots will be handed over to developers and investors later in the year.

Amlak focuses on acquiring various mixed-use properties, both commercial and residential. Amlak had announced a net profit of 758% this year, towards end of last year. Amlak currently has its operations in Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Jordan, Qatar, and is considering moving into Bahrain.

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Al Fara'a launches Mulberry Mansions

Al Fara'a Properties launched their new project, Dh.95mn worth, Mulberry Mansions, yesterday. This forms a part of their Dh.6.5billion worth projects planned for the current year.

The residential development, comprising 23 luxurious town homes, marks the third project of Al Fara'a in Jumeirah Village, following the launch of Manhattan Luxury Apartments and Le Grand Chateau.

Mulberry Mansions
The two-storey townhouses built in Victorian-style will comprise four bedrooms, a terrace, a balcony, maid's room with separate access, a private two-car garage and a small private garden. Few selected townhouses that are positioned at the far end of each row of the plot will have access to private swimming pools within side gardens. The spacious interiors incorporate custom-built walk-in closets, fully equipped kitchens, well-planned master bedrooms with distinct lighting designs, adding to the luxury. All units are well-planned to catch a view of the skylight and boulevard, ensuring natural brightness and ventilation.

The Director of Al Fara'a properties, Natasha Gangaramani said "Through the launch of our third project we are on-track to exceed our Dh.2.5bn investment plans that was outlined for 2008. We now hope to invest Dh.6.5bn this year, and expect to atleast equal our records set by previous projects in terms of customer sales and appreciation."

Mulberry Mansions will be complete towards the third quarter of 2009.

Al Fara'a Properties have met considerable success in their projects launched last year, thereby, re-defining the benchmark of excellence, in the booming realty sector of UAE.

Monday, February 04, 2008

Al Dua'a unveils The Plaza, worth Dh.500mn

A Dh.2billion worth UAE-based property development, Al Dua'a Holdings, an advisory and real estate investment company, has unveiled their Dh.500mn project, The Plaza, a mixed-use development.

Designed by a California-based architect, Toni Ashai, the development comprises residences, offices and retail elements that truly meet the sustainable development requirements of Dubai.

The Plaza from Al Dua
Being ideally located in the core of New Dubai, in close proximity to the Dubai-central Metro Station, 'The Plaza', is within the easy reach of world-class restaurants, beaches, five-star restaurants, golf courses and luxury shopping centers. The development is surrounded by Jumeirah Islands, Emirates Hills, Golf estates, Dubailand, and the Marina.

'The Plaza' also includes executive apartments and suites for short-term temporary accommodations meant for guests, transportation arrangement facility, travel agencies, boutiques, beauty salons and renowned brands in the retail area.

Few of the excellent features of the development include good schools, health care centers and hospitals, lavish green gardens, parks, children's play areas, playgrounds, jogging tracks and indoor parking facility. The commercial area includes health clubs, day-care centers, business centers, conference rooms, virtual-office option, secretarial support, internet and video conferencing.

The Marketing Director of the company, Noreen Khan, mentioned that this mission would help to redefine the concept of lifestyle property in Dubai, by offering a unique combination of residential and commercial space to anyone, looking for high-quality deluxe living, or working environment.

Noor Islamic Bank has come forward with consumer finance of up to 85 percent for the clients of 'The Plaza'.

Sale of Al Madar's Scala an Siraj towers, a huge success

Al Madar's Scala and Siraj Towers have brought about robust sales for the company.

Al Madar scala tower dubai
The 18 storey residential complex, Scala Tower, with 182 apartments, located at Business Bay, Dubai, has been completely sold out. On the other hand, the 30 storey residential complex, Siraj Tower, located at Arjan in dubailand, has been 50 percent sold out, revealed the property developer.

"Both the Towers have achieved enormous sales success, which far exceeds out expectations. We believe that this could be the fruitful result of our commitment to deliver on time, top-class properties, that are greatly appreciated by clients and investors. Also, Dubai's increasing reputation of being an attractive investment destination, has also been vital to the success of Al Madar," quoted the Group Managing Director, Haider Mashhadi.

Al Madar already has a range of exciting projects in pipeline for the current year, including Bellagio, an office tower at Liwan in Dubai, Coppet, and commercial facility at Arjan - Dubai, apart from purchase of various leading properties across major locations in Doha, GCC and Dubai. As a part of its expansion plans for the current year, Al Madar has also begun construction of two more office towers and a hotel in Doha, and has purchased a new plot in Lusail, and a comprehensive integrated development in Qatar where a 15-storey building is likely to be constructed by the company.

Sunday, February 03, 2008

Victory Heights show villas launched in Dubai Sports City

Victory Heights Golf Residential and Development LLC, has unveiled their show villas and onsite sales center at the Dubai Sports City.

Victory Heights, being the first residential Golf Estate in UAE, is a joint-venture between Arcapita, Bahrain based investment bank and Dubai Sports City, the first purpose-built sports city in the world, which include state-of-the-art sporting venues and academies alongside the luxury residences.
Victory heights villas Dubai

Victory Heights is an exclusive golf course villa community with 935 beautifully designed grand villas and distinctive townhouses, set in and around the 18-hole golf course, designed by Ernie Els. The villas are available in authentic Spanish Andalusian, Mediterranean and classic European styles.

The General Manager of Victory Heights, Yasser Abdulla Al Raee, said "The show villas will further distinguish Victory Heights apart from other developments in Dubai in a unique manner. Potential investors can now experience the quality and meticulous detail that has gone into choosing the best available features and fittings."

Nakheel's Al Furjan plots handed-over ahead of schedule

Nakheel has commenced handing over of the Al Furjan plots to the purchases, much ahead of schedule.

Al Furjan is a family-oriented community development, located south of Ibn Battuta Mall, in close proximity to The Gardens and the Discovery Gardens. About 70 commercial and residential apartment plots with sizes ranging from 3000 to 5000 square meters have already been handed over to its purchasers from beginning 25th December, although, the handover was due only on 2nd March 2008.

This follows the successful launch of Al Furjan Phase 1, which was completely sold out within few days of launch. Al Furjan comprises four communities, with individual neighbourhood centers, along with other amenities such as schools, being located within walking distance from homes.
"This is a significant achievement for the Al Furjan team, whose, hard work ensured delivery of the plots prior to official hand-over date. This also marks a major milestone in Al Furjan's progress, and we are excited to deliver these plots much ahead of schedule," said Mohammed Rashed bin Dhabeah, Director, Al Furjan and Jebel Ali Village.

Al Furjan, which means "a collection of houses or a small village", on its completion, will have about 4000 homes, apart from hotels, apartments, commercial and mixed-use plots, all in the developments, which will surround Al Furjan, housing a population of 90,000, the developer confirmed.

Saturday, February 02, 2008

Damac unveils Marina Bay in Abu Dhabi

Damac Properties, has unveiled 24-storey Marina Bay, a green luxury development at Najmat Abu Dhabi on Al Reem Island.

Marina Bay Tower Abu Dhabi
The eco-friendly development promises a rejuvenating lifestyle, with added pleasure of owning a waterfront property, while bestowing one with superb views of the canal, which connects the whole development.

Positioned in just 300mts away from Abu Dhabi City Center, and 20 minutes from Abu Dhabi International Airport, the Marina Bay, is a mixed-use tower, with retail on the ground and mezzanine floors, offices at podium level, and penthouses and duplexes on the higher floors. The residential blocks of the development includes single, double and triple bedroom apartments with smart home technology, camera supervised covered parking facility on three podiums of the tower, and a 240hour resident's service and concierge service.

Other features include latest gym facilities, a Spa with sauna, steam and massages, yoga room, meditation room, children's playroom, pool, games room with pool table, football court, table tennis, carom and other indoor sports amenities. The retail blocks comprise top-class retail brands, restaurants, cafes and boutiques amidst landscaped surroundings. The commercial blocks can have access to hi-speed internet, business center, business lounge and the 240hour security cameras.

The Chairman of Damac Holding, Hussain Sajwani, said "The construction activity in Abu Dhabi is going on at a rapid pace, bringing about a considerable change in landscape, and this coupled with the construction boom and increasing population, makes Abu Dhabi an ideal investment destination and also a great place to live. The launch of Marina Bay in the capital, further strengthens our presence in the Abu Dhabi market and in the entire region."

"The development is so designed that it is likely to enhance the well-being of people, while maximizing water efficiency using intelligent integrated building management system," said Peter Riddoch, CEO, Damac Properties.

Damac has completed about 80 projects globally, and Marina Bay is their second project in Abu Dhabi.

Triveni's La Fontana apartments launched in Dubai

A new Dh.100mn worth La Fontana di Trevi apartments has been launched by Triveni Builders and Promoters Limited (TBPL) in Dubai.

La Fontana di Trevi apartments Dubai
The apartments, located in close proximity to the Arabian Ranches, just off the Emirates Road and Dubailand, is a six storey low-rise with state-of-the-art architecture. Being built in Chicago-style, with large "Chicago windows", these buildings possess distinctive bays, metal-frame construction and terra-cotta cladding. The stylish master-plan is expected to have a strong impact on the European, UK and US expats, who are more comfortable with the low-rises, the company mentioned in their statement.

Each apartment has the convenience of secure, covered parking, with modern fully equipped gym, walkways for the elderly, jogging tracks, and children's play area. Each floor is divided into twenty-one well-done apartments, comprising twelve single bedroom, three studios and six two bedroom apartments.

Being a part of Arjan Master Community, La Fontana includes schools, offices, residences, hotels, parks, retail and leisure. The complex is located within close proximity of the Mall of Emirates, the Diamond Park, Burj Al Arab Hotel, and is surrounded by retail and entertainment outlets, coffee shops, restaurants and parks.

The Chief Executive Officer of TBPL, Ashok Galgotia, said "We are proud to have contributed to the development of Dubai property sector, where there is an ever increasing demand for quality housing units and the La Fontana apartments that combines the latest architectural designs, with true definition of comfort and luxury, all in one, will bring about a tremendous change with an affordable option for quality living."

Mizin is the master developer of the project. Landmark projects such as the 'Dubai Eye', 'The Giant Dubai Wheel' etc., will be based in this community. The community will also house one of the largest "open air" amphitheatres for carrying out big events in Dubai.