Author: houseman (Page 3 of 4)

Nakheel to build tallest skyscraper in the world

07 April 2008

Burj Dubai, the icon skyscraper of Dubai which is still under construction, has already won the record of the tallest building in the world (its final height, still top secret, should be about 900m). But Dubai is now welcoming the announcement of a new 1,200 metre-tall building, which will establish the new record. The news was reported by the website of the economic magazine Arabian Business, which quoted Australian architect Wood Bagot, winner of the consultancy contract.

The skyscraper, with an investment of over USD61 billion, will be built in the south of the Dubai Emirate, in the heart of the Arabian Canal, a huge project which, cutting deeply through the desert, will carry the sea water along a 75 km-long channel between Jebel Ali and Palm Jumerirah Island. Nakheel, which will carry out the construction works stated that the skyscraper project is still in the designing stage and added that it is still “early to reveal all the details”, including the name of the building itself, temporarily known as the High Tower.

Dubai to transform bay into big cultural centre

27 March 2008

Creek, the bay around which Dubai was founded and developed, will be transformed into an international art and culture centre. This is the goal of Khor Dubai, an ambitious project which will line along 20 kilometres of coasts museums, theatres, libraries and galleries.

“The initiative is inspired by our historical-cultural heritage and prepares our present to build the future in order to advance the country towards new horizons of development,” commented young Sheikh Majdi, son of Sheikh Mohammad Bin Rashid and director of Dubai Culture and Arts Authority.

There will be ten theme museums, starting with the already announced museum on the Prophet of Islam Muhammad, 13 theatres, as well as an opera theatre, galleries and institutes of arts and culture. The libraries dedicated to literature, poetry and music will be nine while 72 statues and monuments will rise between the Shindagha area and the Business Bay.

USD 70 billion investment committed to tourism industry in UAE

18 March 2008

The ProLeads database, which monitors construction contracts across the Gulf, identifies more than 100 individual projects worth USD 70 billion in hotels and related leisure and tourism facilities under construction or committed in the UAE. The survey identifies Dubai, in particular, as the star performer, with the region’s highest hotel room occupancy rate (84.2 per cent), the highest average room rate (USD 282) and the highest revenue per available room (USD 237).

“We know the Middle East is a fast-developing hotel and tourism market but survey after survey reveals that the UAE hospitality sector is growing on a grand scale, unmatched elsewhere in the world,” said Maggie Moore, exhibition director of The Hotel Show 2008. The premier hotel supplies exhibition takes place at the Dubai International Exhibition and Convention Centre from June 8-10.

The UN World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO) is also optimistic about tourism in the Middle East. “UNWTO identifies the Middle East as the tourism success story of the decade with the region emerging as a strong destination and visitor numbers climbing much faster than the world total,” said Moore as reported by Arabian Business online.

Waterfront City, new development from Nakheel in Dubai

14 March 2008

“Waterfront City”, the latest development presented by United Arab Emirates (UAE) real estate development giant Nakheel will be the world’s biggest urban project. The project will feature a central island and four districts around it, and it will host at least 92,000 residents and 300,000 people who will work there. One-third of the entire surface area (330ha) will be developed in offices, the hotel sector will have 11% of the available space while trade and culture will have 6% and 5% respectively of the entire area.

“It will have a density similar to the one of Manhattan therefore the residential, commercial and cultural spaces will overlap in order to make a compact centre,” Matt Joyce, Waterfront’s managing director, said adding that the city will have a big central park, a mosque and exclusive attractions that will allow the residents and visitors to enjoy a vibrant cosmopolite city round the clock.

The island will be divided by a grid of five roads which will guarantee that the distances will be easily covered while walking and that the course of the traffic will be fluid. On the Island, as well as in the four other districts – the Boulevard, the Madinat Al Sur, the Resort, and the Marina – each block will have porches and tree-lined roads still preserving their design character, the architects explain. In order to optimise the climate control, to use the local winds and to assure as much shadow as possible, the designers concentrated the biggest buildings (144 skyscrapers over 100 metres high) on the southern side of the complex.

“The infrastructure works will begin in June and the City will be completed by 2018,” project director Frank Konings said, adding that the subcontracts has not been awarded yet and the sales have not been launched. The City will pulse in the centre of the Waterfront mega project, an impressive piece of land divided in five islands that will lie in the water south of the emirate forming a crescent around the Palm Island of Jebel Ali. Once completed, the ambitious project of coastal engineering, the Waterfront, will extend the coasts of the emirate by 820km (12 times the length of the natural coastline) and will develop a surface bigger than the territory of Beirut.

In January, Nakheel announced the creation of ‘Universe’, an archipelago of artificial islands inspired by the solar system, which will be located between the Palm Islands of Jumeirah and Deira, also created by Nakheel.

Holiday home owners spend on average 4 weeks in property

10 March 2008

People who have bought holiday homes abroad only tend to spend about a month in their overseas property, new figures have revealed.

According to a study by, second home owners from the UK occupy their foreign residence for an average of four weeks. This has prompted the organisation to suggest that they make the best use of their property during the remaining 48 weeks of the year.

Specifically, it has informed people of the financial gains they could make if they rent out their holiday home when it would otherwise be sitting empty.

Ross Elder, managing director of, commented: “There is a fantastic opportunity for owners of holiday homes to reap the rewards of the healthy rental market.”

He added that mixed-use investors could earn an annual sum between £7,000 and £18,000 in rent per annum.

Dubai dedicates island of “The World” archipelago to pearls

26 February 2008

Turning Dubai into the centre of global pearl trade: this is the objective of ‘Pearls of Arabia’, the latest project presented in the emirate which, reviving the recent past of UAE, is looking into the immediate future. Until a century ago 95% of the economy of the emirates, not yet related into a federation, was based on pearls. Now, six square kilometres of structures dedicated to pearls will be built on Antarctica, one of the 300 islands forming the archipelago ‘The World’. A cultural centre, a theatre, an exhibition gallery, thematic parks and restaurants will be built, but most of all boutiques for the sale of lines pearls created especially for Dubai will be opened. The world’s best selections and the most exclusive jewellery will be available for visitors in a historical and cultural route in the end of 2010.

Real estate under construction worth USD 120 billion

15 February 2008

Luxury residential areas, trade centres which will attract the most prestigious brands in the world, entertainment parks, hotels, the real estate sector does not seem to suffer slowdowns in Dubai and the estimated value of the projects in stage of implementation is USD 120 billion, according to daily Milano Finanza. In 2008 alone the new apartments in the emirate will be 150,000. And in five years, according to the paper, a residential area larger than Manhattan will be built in Palm Jumeirah, where apartments and 200 hotels will host over 700,000 people. Dubai Marina and particularly the zone of Jumeirah Lake are the areas where the biggest offer of real estates is concentrated, with prices ranging between EUR 3,000 and 3,500 per square metre. But there are not only apartments, in the next years, among other things, a race track for F1 will be built as well as the futuristic project of Burj Dubai, the world’s highest tower, which will host Giorgio Armanìs hotel, among others. Almost science fiction then is the future hotel Hydropolis, the first hotel built completely under water.

Damac launches Marina Bay in Abu Dhabi

03 February 2008

Damac Properties has unveiled its Marina Bay project in Abu Dhabi, a green luxury development at the Najmat Abu Dhabi, raising its total investments to USD500 million in the growing property market of the emirate. The 24-storey Marina Bay overlooks the marina and occupies a prime seafront on Al Reem Island. The project is due to be completed three years from the day the master developer hands over the land. The development is a mix-use tower that offers retail on ground and mezzanine levels, offices on podium level and penthouses and duplexes on the higher floors, Khaleej Times online reports.

World’s longest arch-bridge to be built in Dubai

01 February 2008

“Sixth Crossing”, the new bridge that Dubai plans to construct over the bay, is designed to become the longest arch-bridge ever built in the world. Over the stretch of asphalt, suspended 15 metres above water level, a gigantic arch – 667 metres long and 205 metres high – will rise becoming yet another distinctive feature of the city. The whole bridge, which will feature another arch of more modest dimensions, will be 1.6 kilometres long and 64 metres wide and will comprise 12 road traffic lanes as well as the green line of Dubais underground. The structure, which will cost some 552 million Euro, will connect the Al Jaddaf area and Business Bay, and it will provide access to Creek Island, where an opera building will be constructed. The construction works will start in March and will be completed within four years, Dubais Roads and Transport Authority announced.

The Universe – new complex planned for Dubai

25 January 2008

The Universe, a complex of artificial coral islands inspired by the solar system, is the latest architecture and engineering challenge destined to redesign the coastal profile of the Emirate. With islands resembling the sun, the moon and the planets, the universe will lie between Palm Jumeirah and Palm Deira, perfectly embracing the exclusive archipelago The World. The Universe too will be designed by real-estate development giant Nakheel. Luxurious residences, business centres as well as tourist and trade centres will be built on the 3,000ha of islands. Despite the announcement of the project, details are still shrouded in mystery: the amount of the investment was not disclosed, the construction deadlines are vague – ranging between 15 and 20 years – the regulation plan is yet to be defined as it depends on the various feasibility and environmental impact studies. Already criticised in the past for the strong impact that its projects could have on the coastal ecosystem of Dubai, Nakheel launched together with The Universe also the Blue Communities initiative for the study of sustainable coastal development with funding of 37.5 million Euro for the first three years.

“Blue Communities is an appeal for action,” Sultan Bin Sulayem said pointing out the “need of considerable investments in research, development and positive transformation of the coastal areas”. This commitment is aimed at various situations throughout the world, beyond the borders of the United Arab Emirates (UAE). The ambition to significantly increase the coastline of the emirate comes directly from Sheikh Mohammad bin Rashid al Maktum. When the engineers presented him with a project for the extension of the Dubai coastline with seven kilometres he asked “why not 70”. This challenge was the origin of the idea of a palm-shaped island, followed later by the other impressive projects in the waters of Dubai. A proliferation that does not seem associated to any concern of saturation. “The real estate market is led by the dynamism of the demand and the offer,” Sulayem said. “The Universe will be developed in separate stages which will evolve with the evolution of the future demand.” Amid business ambitions and environmental responsibilities, Nakheel has also announced that it will oversee the redevelopment of Port Rashid: ten years of work will transform the current structures in a residential community for at least 300,000 citizens.

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