Tag Archives: Exhibition

Dubailand CEO Mohammed Alhabbai and DAMAC Chairman Hussein Sajwani on the Launch of Akoya by DAMAC

Most Luxurious Golf Community in Asia is now in Dubai with Golf Club, Premium Mansions and Villas

DAMAC Properties, the largest private developer of luxury real estate in the Middle East, announces the launch of ‘Akoya by DAMAC’, a 28 million square feet master development off Umm Sequim Road in Dubai.

‘Akoya by DAMAC’ will be the most luxurious Golf community in Asia, with premium branded mansions, villas, townhouses and luxurious apartment units. The project will include an 18-hole PGA Championship Golf Course at the heart of the development, in addition to a sumptuous spa, boutique hotels and international schools from kindergarten to secondary level.

The fully-integrated community will also include globally-recognised retail brands, leisure & entertainment offerings, a sports complex and beautifully manicured landscaping throughout.

‘Akoya by DAMAC’, which takes its name from one of the most exclusive pearls in the world, will create a thriving living environment aimed at meeting the demand of those living and working in Dubai and the region, as well as those holidaying there.

The project will include distinctive architecture, lush landscaping and unrivalled five-star service in every element of the luxury living environment.

The development will be the largest project by size and scale which DAMAC Properties has ever launched, further confirming the stabilisation and upturn in the Dubai real estate market.

“We aim to make ‘Akoya by DAMAC’ the most desirable living environment in Dubai for aspirational professionals who recognise ultimate luxury,” said Mr. Hussein Sajwani, Chairman, DAMAC Properties. “The development will bring a blend of high-end, five-star living, with unrivalled facilities and create a haven for families looking to make Dubai their home.”

The latest report from Jones Lang LaSalle showed that valuations of apartments and villas in Dubai had continued to climb. In the first quarter of this year prices were up 18% in prime locations. The report also stated that ‘for the first time since mid-2008, all sectors of the Dubai real estate market are currently positioned in the recovery stage of the market cycle.

“We are in advanced discussions with a number of leading global brands to make ‘Akoya by DAMAC’ the most sought-after area in Dubai,” added Mr. Sajwani.

The purchase of land from Dubailand has been completed and all required paperwork has been received.

DUBAILAND® is a popular district of Dubai that includes entertainment, sporting, shopping and residential communities. The destination hosts a number of diverse attractions including Miracle Gardens, Sports City, Motor City and Global Village. It is well connected to key highways making it within quick and easy reach of prime costal and downtown areas.

DAMAC Properties has completed 37 buildings to date with 7,817 units and spanning 13,945,299.00 sq feet. DAMAC Properties also has a further 66 buildings at various stages of progress across the Middle East and North Africa region. These consist of 12,100 units.

More details will be made available to visitors to the Arabian Travel Market, taking place at Dubai International Convention and Exhibition Centre from 6-9 May 2013. Visitors will find the DAMAC Properties stand at Sheikh Saeed Hall, stand 5,560.

Top Five Reasons for Dubai Property Market Resurgence

Top Five reasons for the Dubai Property Market recovery

As the Dubai Property Market continues to go from strength to strength, we take a look at the top five reasons why Real Estate in the UAE is seeing a powerful resurgence.

Following the correction in prices back in 2008, the market has slowly improved with 2012 seeing the most impressive growth – around 10-12% in some of the more desirable areas according to recent reports.

There remains a great deal of growth still to come as infrastructure is completed and the influx of foreign investment and foreign workers drives the market.

1.    Increased Liquidity

The Dubai economy remains on a strong recovery path with Gross Domestic Product projected to grow by 4.5% in 2012. This performance is being driven by the strong growth of key sectors such as tourism, commerce, retail, hospitality and logistics.

Banks are now providing funding again – not just for investors in the form of mortgages as low as 3.99% – but also to contractors and developers.

As developers receive funding as well as deposits and further payments on projects they will be able to continue building at pace. Liquidity is the key driver of the Dubai Property market and the banks need to continue to make funding available at all levels to ensure that the current recovery remains on track, at a steady pace.

2.    Comprehensive infrastructure investment

The Dubai Government is again investing heavily in an infrastructure programme, with Dubai World Central spending US$ 4.6 billion on infrastructure alone and terminal two of Jebel Ali Port passed halfway and set for completion next year.

As road networks, schools, hospitals and shopping malls also complete in the new areas of Dubai, investment in the real estate projects will continue to come in. There are many good prices to be achieved in the less developed areas of Dubai which are certain to grow in the coming years as the infrastructure network is finished.

3.    New Job Creation

Nearly one million new jobs are expected to be created before the end of 2020 according to the Dubai Government. As Dubai continues to grow and generate new opportunities, the demand for quality housing will remain. Jones Lang La Salle predicts that around 50,000 additional residential units are expected to be delivered by 2014.

With Europe and America still feeling the effects of a global recession, many ex-pats are looking to Dubai as a place to extend their career opportunities.

According to Hasnain Qazi, Middle East Business Manager at Huxley Associates, “Dubai has evolved into a lifestyle destination of choice for people all over the world looking for a safe, secure, vibrant, cosmopolitan city to live in, providing tax free income and a high standard of living. This is quite a contrast to many other countries in the world where economic and social conditions are not as rosy.”

 4.    Transparency and regulation

The Real Estate Regulatory Agency (RERA) is launching a new service fees index in this month which aims at regulating service fees, reducing disputes about service charges and increasing transparency in the market.

Following the release of the draft investor protection law in Q2, the Dubai Land Department has released a draft Code of Corporate Governance for Developers. The Code defines the responsibilities of developers and requires them to disclose to investors complete information about their properties, including alternatives in case of potential delays. The Code’s ultimate goal is ensuring more transparency and better regulation of the real estate market.

Further regulations ensure that all lease contracts are registered through a government database and all transactions with the Land Department go through a centralised listing site for available property, all of which prompted DAMAC Properties to recently call Dubai’s property market as one of the most regulated in the world.

“DAMAC Properties welcomes recent moves by the Dubai government to tighten regulation in the property market which we believe will sort out the wheat from the chaff,” said Niall McLoughlin, Senior Vice President, DAMAC Properties. “As the market in Dubai recovers strongly, it is important to have clear legislation which will instill confidence in overseas investors in particular.”

5.    Confidence

Investors believe in the Dubai Property market again. Government, banks and developers have worked hard over the past few years to bring back the belief in the growth potential of the market. Cityscape Global this year was a case in point with companies talking confidently about the prospects for the future and bringing back projects which had previously been shelved.

All markets, both financial and real estate are driven by consumer confidence and a return to the belief that Dubai is a thriving international hub will see clients returning in big numbers.

What do you think of our top five list? What have we missed? We would love to hear your thoughts on this and any other news on Dubai Property Invest. And don’t forget to also join us on Twitter @dxbpropinvest

Cityscape Global – Day Two Highlights

It was another busy day in the halls of Dubai World Trade Centre yesterday as the serious business of Cityscape Global 2012 was conducted.

After all of the media hype and rush to get announcements out and steal the limelight on the opening day, things settled down as the high level meetings got underway.

Much of the attention turned to the Cityscape conference, where international executives discussed the latest strategies and development programmes in their respective countries.

One that caught the eye was the Iraqi Minister of Construction and Housing, Mohammed Darraji, who told delegates that the country needs to build 150,000 homes a year to satisfy current demand. It is only managing to develop around 60,000 through its own resources and is currently in conversations with a number of the leading UAE developers to encourage them to begin development in Iraq.

He added that according to a study by McKinsey and Co, the construction and infrastructure projects in Iraq would reach US$ 10.4 billion in 2013 alone. He added that Iraq also has the highest annual construction output in the region with an annual growth rate of 15 percent.

In the halls and corridors there was a lot of talk about the return of the speculator. With Emaar announcing it had sold out the The BLVD on its opening day launch, a number of senior executives were wondering if many of them were speculators looking to make a fast return. However they also added that speculators were part of any maturing property market: “Speculators in the market make it work,” Nick Maclean from CBRE told Gulf Business.

So, today will be the final chance to check out the latest projects, speak with the senior executives on the stands and see what is coming up in the Dubai property market over the next twelve months. We will be continuing to bring you the latest news and pictures from around the show on our twitter feed: @dxbpropinvest.

Cityscape Global 2012 is open

Cityscape Global 2012 – Day One Review

There was a bustling, vibrant atmosphere on the opening day of Cityscape Global, the largest real estate exhibition in the Middle East, which opened at Dubai World Trade Centre yesterday.

The packed halls and serious business meetings across the stands was visual proof that the Dubai property market is seeing steady growth and there are keen investors ready to inject cash into the right projects at the right time.

It was Sheikh Maktoum bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Deputy Ruler of Dubai, who officially inaugurated the 11th edition of Cityscape with an expected crowd of visitors ready to head into the halls. And they weren’t disappointed.

Major announcements across the day included a number of new projects, including two from the Meydan Group, developer of the Meydan Racecourse. Hadaeq Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid is a new 190,000m2 housing scheme in Nad Al Sheba which will feature canals and lagoons, incorporating English, French and Japanese landscaping. The company also re-launched its stalled 72-storey Meydan Tower in Sheikh Zayed Road which will contain homes, offices, shops and hotels.

The focus was also, as expected, on serviced hotel apartments with leading developers drumming up strong support for this relatively new investment vehicle.

DAMAC Properties, the Middle East’s leading luxury developer, announced it would have 4,000 units under development or management by the end of next year at that its first serviced apartment project, Burjside Boulevard would complete mid-2013. The company boldly stated it was taking a leadership role in bringing hotel apartments to the fore in Dubai.

On a lighter note there were a few projects announced which reminded us of the heady days back in 2007/8.

The Taj Arabia project, which was first announced more than five years ago is now set to be become a reality according to the developers of the 3.8 million sqm Falcon City of Wonders. The ‘city’ is also looking bring many other replicas from around the world, including The Eiffel Tower and the Leaning Tower of Pisa.

While there was some of the glitz and glamour of old, it was much more subdued and there was much more a feeling of serious, long-term strategy to provide investors with a sustained growth rather than a fast buck.

More is expected today and you can keep up to date with all of the news from the show here and on Twitter @dxbpropinvest


Dubai Property Market Price Boost

On the eve of Cityscape Global, the major exhibition for the Dubai property market, a Q3 report has been released which supports the sentiment that prices are increasing across the Emirate.

Real Estate experts Cluttons state that apartment prices have increased by 4.9% across the first nine months of 2012 and the company predicts that the trend is set to continue into the new year.

The numbers were supported by news in the report that rental values had also increased, by as much as 6.8% across the board.

There has been a growing confidence in the Dubai property market throughout 2012 and this is expected to peak at Cityscape Global taking place from 2-4 October at the Dubai International Convention and Exhibition Centre.

Many of the leading Dubai developers are expected to announce progress on projects across the Middle East with a big focus on the serviced apartment sector. In line with this, DAMAC Properties, one of the leading luxury developers in the region, has announced it will have 4,000 units under development or management by the end of next year.

The first serviced hotel apartment project to be run under the luxury DAMAC Suites & Spa management arm will be Burjside Boulevard which overlooks the Burj Area and Dubai Mall. The project is expected to complete mid-2013.

Emaar Properties also recently announced its own serviced apartment offering in the same region – The BLVD which will start construction shortly and be ready my mid-2015.

As projects move again and the completion of many projects are set before the end of the year, Cluttons believes that as many as 24,000 units could hit the market in the next few months, tempering somewhat the strong increases that has been experienced in the first three quarters of this year.

According to Dubai government published figures, foreign investors buying real estate were responsible for acquisitions of AED 28.3 billion (USD $7.7 billion) in the first half of 2012, up 36% from the same period last year, giving a strong indication of improved business confidence in the Emirate from global investors.

Cityscape Global Directer Walter Molman on this year's show

In Depth – We Speak with Cityscape Global Director, Wouter Molman

With just a couple of weeks to go until Cityscape Global opens its doors at Dubai International Convention and Exhibition Centre www.dubaipropertyinvest.com spoke with the shows Director, Wouter Molman in detail about the changes to this year’s show, what we can expect and how the industry has changed in the past few years.

How has Cityscape Global evolved over the past three years since the downturn in the market?

On the exhibition side, over the past three years Cityscape Global has gradually been attracting an increasing amount of international exhibitors looking to tap into the Gulf region for potential investors. This year, nearly 50% of the exhibition space will be occupied by international exhibitors, with pavilions from countries including Turkey, Russia, Egypt, Iraq, Qatar, UK and India.

This transition toward being a more global real estate event is following the repositioning strategy two years ago. Cityscape Dubai was rebranded to Cityscape Global to recognize international appeal of the event, and we are now really seeing the results.

This repositioning has allowed Cityscape to constantly keep abreast of the changing international real estate market and launch new initiatives alongside the show ensuring the event keeps the ‘fresh’ feel. 2012 has seen the introduction of the Country of Honour where Turkey have been positioned to emphasise their growing dominance in  the real estate market due to the recent reciprocity law attracting keen attention from international investors. This new initiative allows Cityscape Global to evolve with the market highlighting new regions of grown and interest to our event participants.

Having said that, confidence in the local real estate market is also increasing, and this is reflected by the amount of UAE based developers participating at this year’s show looking to showcase their most recent real estate project updates and launches – watch this space.

As a result, the Cityscape Global exhibition has grown by over 50% this year, which is a testament to the strength of the Cityscape brand as well as the growing confidence in Dubai as a leading business hub for emerging markets globally.

There have also been some significant developments over the past three years for the Cityscape Global conferences. Cityscape Global will host three dedicated conferences that reflect the changing dynamics of the current global real estate market.

The Global Real Estate Summit, Retail City, and the World Architecture Congress will spotlight the latest news, analysis and insight on the world’s foremost real estate markets, involving the most influential and respected leaders in the industry.

All of the big players in the UAE market, DAMAC Properties, Emaar and Nakheel have remained big supporters of the show. What role do they play in the industry and how important is it to support them while also expanding globally?

UAE developers, both big and small players alike will continuously play a crucial role in the development of Cityscape Global and of course their participation in the show is always highly valued.

Within the local real estate sector, it is important that the big names continue to propel the industry forward, as they set the benchmark and are essentially the measuring barometer of how well the industry is performing. 

While Cityscape Global is become more popular with international exhibitors, it will still always remain a ‘Dubai’ show and is the ideal platform for local players to drive growth in real estate investment and development both in emerging markets within the Middle East and globally. In that sense, supporting local players whilst also expanding globally go hand in hand, with the local developers benefiting from this further widespread awareness generated from the international investors looking to the event as a ‘shop window’ for international real estate investment opportunities.

How would you explain the importance of exhibitions at a time when more business is going online. How do you stay relevant?

While online commerce continues to gain traction, the face-to-face element of events will ensure it will always continue to have a unique benefit over any other means of conducting business.  Having said that, Cityscape Global embraces the online and digital age and we have incorporated several online campaigns in our communications strategies with exhibitors and visitors including business matching services, and native mobile applications.

We look to integrate these new technologies that become available with Cityscape events to further enhance our participant’s experiences, promoting further business interaction before the start of the event, and long after the doors close.

2012 will see the launch of the new Cityscape Global business matching service myCityscape, connecting exhibitors to pre-registered visitors allowing them to network and arrange their time during the event in a much more effective and efficient manner, by pre-scheduling meetings online with potential clients and investors.

To support this initiative, we have also introduced a mobile application allowing the audience to download a specific Cityscape app to their phone. The app lets users connect with each other during the show, keeping constant contact for organising and rescheduling meetings whilst in the exhibition halls. Directly linked to the business matching service, the app ensures participants take full advantage of the business opportunities on offer at Cityscape Global 2012.

What key developments are needed at UAE Government level to ensure the Dubai property market remains strong?

There has been a lot of talk about introducing a long term property visa, and this certainly wouldn’t harm investor confidence in the Dubai property market, however there have been some mixed views on how strong the impact of such a regulation (once implemented) will be.

The market is also now awaiting a new set of regulations to be implemented by the Dubai Land Department, which will protect investors from delays and unilateral changes to the real estate projects they have invested in, allowing them to get their money back when developers violate the terms and conditions. This will further improve transparency and investor confidence in the Dubai real estate market.

Can you share some statistics on how the market is currently?

According to the Jones Lang LaSalle’s Dubai Real Estate Market Overview Q2 2012, the signs are that Dubai’s real estate sector is set for double digit growth in the next three years, due to a constant stream of fresh project handovers across the commercial, residential and hospitality sectors.

In the residential sector, 6,000 units were completed in the first six months of 2012, bringing the total number of residential units in Dubai to 344,000.  A further 24,000 residential units are expected to be delivered for the remainder of 2012, while another 15,000 units should be ready for handover in 2013 and 2014, presenting a supply increase of 11 per cent from the current amount of stock.

Office space in Dubai is also expected to increase by 24 per cent by the end of 2013, reaching 7.2 million square metres. The emirate is likely to add an extra 1.1 million sq m to the current 6.1 million sq m, though it must be mentioned there is currently 2.2 million sq m of office space currently on hold.

Meanwhile, the hospitality sector in Dubai continues to show no signs of slowing down, with the opening of Millennium Plaza on Sheikh Zayed Road, the Rixos The Palm, and the Melia Bur Dubai in the first half of this year adding a further 850 hotel rooms to Dubai’s booming tourism industry, amounting to a total of 54,300 rooms. Another 11,300 rooms are expected to be injected by the end of 2014, up 20 per cent from the current amount of rooms.

Residential, hospitality and retail sectors all are generally expected to have bottomed out, with villas and apartments showing a double digit growth on 2008 levels. Over the first half of 2012, the Dubai Land Department reported just under 19,000 land transactions totalling US$ 1.7 billion, up 21 percent on the same period last year.

Cityscape Global takes place from 2 – 4 October 2012 at Dubai International Convention and Exhibition Centre.

Dubai Property Invest will be at Cityscape all three days bringing the latest news and updated from the developers