Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Emaar unveils iconic hotel, residence and serviced apartment towers, 'The Address Residence Sky View,' in Downtown Dubai

Dubai, UAE: Emaar Properties PJSC, the global property developer, has further strengthened its portfolio of premium hotels, residences and serviced apartments in Downtown Dubai, the most visited tourism and lifestyle destination in the world, with the launch of The Address Residence Sky View, the latest addition to The Address Hotel + Resorts' portfolio and a flagship property for the brand.

A striking 50-storey hotel, residence and serviced apartment twin-tower complex atop a grand podium, designed by the architects of Burj Khalifa, Skidmore, Owings & Merrill, The Address Residence Sky View is set to become another compelling landmark in the city and a notional gateway to Downtown Dubai.
The towers serve as a perfect complement to the thriving world-class lifestyle in Downtown Dubai, described as the most prestigious square kilometre on earth and 'The Centre of Now.' It will be linked directly to the Dubai Metro and The Dubai Mall via the new air-conditioned travelator.
Spanning the tower complex is a unique 'Sky Bridge', which includes a signature restaurant, ballroom, infinity pool with amenity deck, which offers 360-degree vistas of Downtown Dubai and panoramic views of the Gulf.
The launch of The Address Residence Sky View will be held simultaneously in Dubai and Riyadh, allowing clients in the two key markets ease of access to the new release. It follows the overwhelming investor response to launch of The Address The BLVD, the first branded hotel real estate offered in Downtown Dubai, and The Address Residence Fountain Views I & II.
The Address Residence Sky View also complements Emaar's focus on leveraging the strong investor confidence in Dubai's property market and surging demand for premium residences and hotels in central locations.
Mohamed Alabbar, Chairman of Emaar Properties PJSC, said: 'The Address Residence Sky View will be another impressive, iconic structure to the Dubai skyline, offering unparalleled views of Downtown Dubai and beyond. Emaar has been shaping lifestyles since its inception, underlining our strategy to create long-term value for our stakeholders. The project builds on the growth of the property market and tourism sectors of Dubai, offering investors a premium choice of home in the most prestigious square kilometre on earth.

'The Address Residence Sky View will become the referral point for all future projects from design and architecture to its host of services, while focusing on creating prime real estate assets in Dubai that contribute to the city’s economy,' he added.
The Address Residence Sky View, at a height of over 230 metres, brings a new dimension to spatial design to Downtown Dubai. All 532 serviced apartments are fully furnished and designed to ensure optimal light across all living spaces and with floor-to-ceiling windows that offer stunning views of Downtown Dubai or the Gulf. Exclusive amenities are combined with an interior design philosophy that evokes quiet elegance and refined luxury, laying the foundation for a truly unique lifestyle experience at the gateway to Downtown Dubai. 
A dedicated lobby for The Address Residence Sky View welcomes residents and guests with refined warmth and elegance, as distinct materials and textures, including wood, glass, stone and beautiful leathers with soft lighting, evoke a sense of luxury.
Envisaged to become a much sought-after address in Downtown Dubai, The Address Residence Sky View will also serve as a preferred business hotel of approximately 180 keys, appealing to visitors to the neighbouring Emaar Square and Dubai International Financial Centre. The development is conveniently close to the Mohammed Bin Rashid Boulevard, billed as the world's most prestigious boulevard with an extensive choice of retail and food and beverage choices.
Potential customers can pre-register interest for the Dubai launch of The Address Residence Sky View from 10am in Dubai, on February 27, 2013, at www.emaar.com. The Dubai sale will be to the online applicants on a first registered, first served basis on March 2, 2013. They can also call toll-free 800 EMAAR (36227) for more details.
In addition, potential customers for the Riyadh launch can visit Four Seasons Hotel Riyadh, Kingdom Centre and will be offered purchase opportunity on a first come, first served basis. Only legal residents of Saudi Arabia will be eligible to purchase from Riyadh.
Backed by strong investor response, Emaar Properties has marked several key new project launches in recent months in Downtown Dubai and Arabian Ranches, its established masterplanned communities. Emaar is also developing the first residential community in the newly launched Mohammed Bin Rashid City, the largest of its kind real estate development in the region, along with Dubai Holding.
Downtown Dubai is Emaar Properties' flagship 500-acre mixed-use development, and features world-class assets including commercial, residential, hotel, entertainment, shopping and leisure components set in open green spaces dotted with lakes and other distinct water features. Downtown Dubai was in global spotlight hosting the New Year's Eve Gala, which attracted a record 1.7 million visitors.

Saturday, February 23, 2013

RTA Nol cards feature scenes of Dubai

Designs aim to introduce residents and visitors to Dubai’s most important features

Dubai: Dubai’s Roads and Transport Authority has released Nol cards with distinguished designs for the personal blue card category.









The cards feature images of Dubai’s sites such as the Burj Al Arab, Burj Khalifa, Al Bastakiya, the Clock roundabout, the Trade Centre, and many other sites and locations. The idea behind issuing these designs is to introduce both residents and visitors to the most important features of Dubai along with its tourism sites and other scenic locations.
Mohammad Al Mudreb, the director of the unified card for transport systems at the technical establishment services sector at the RTA, said that the distinguished card is considered special as it shows the most important features of Dubai which have contributed to making it one of the first tourism destinations in the region. He added that choosing the particular location was done according to its importance, its fame inside the country and abroad, and whether it attracted overall interest due to mixing tradition with modernity.
Al Mudreb added that the Dubai Roads and Transport Authority usually distributes different Nol cards on various national and social occasions to give using users of public transport facilities the special feeling of understanding the history of Dubai. He also pointed out that these cards give a sense of enhancing the national identity and they are also practical as they can be used for the Metro, buses, and water transport, thus saving time and effort for public transport users in Dubai. 

Monday, February 11, 2013

The Dubai Mall sets new global milestone welcoming 65 million visitors in 2012

The Dubai Mall, the world's largest shopping and entertainment destination by global property developer Emaar Properties PJSC, has set a new global milestone welcoming 65 million visitors in 2012, an increase of more than 20 percent compared to the 54 million visitors hosted by the mall in 2011. Retail sales across the various outlets in the mall also have reported robust growth of 24 percent over 2011.

Underlining its credentials as the world's most visited shopping and leisure destination, The Dubai Mall surpasses, by far, the annual visitor numbers to all leading shopping malls and leisure attractions in the world, highlighting Dubai's eminent position as a global retail, tourism and business hub. The visitor profile of the mall comprises UAE residents, a cosmopolitan population of over 200 nationalities, and also reflects the tourism demographics of Dubai, with guests arriving from all over the world.
Attracting more number of visitors than the annual tourists to New York City at over 52 million and Los Angeles at 41 million in 2012, The Dubai Mall is today a must-visit destination in Dubai's tourist itinerary, and the most-compelling getaway for retail enthusiasts and leisure seekers. The mall’s central location, only a four-hour flying distance away for a population of over 2.5 billion, makes it the world's busiest fashion, retail and leisure hub, offering a wealth of choices for all visitors.
Mohamed Alabbar, Chairman of Emaar Properties, said:"The impressive growth achieved by The Dubai Mall is testament to the vision of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, UAE Vice President and Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, to further energise the core sectors of the economy including retail, which contributes significantly to the Emirate's GDP. We are thankful to him for his continued guidance and support."
"The visitor footfall to The Dubai Mall has exceeded our expectations every year since its opening in 2008, and in 2012, we marked another landmark by welcoming 65 million visitors. This is complemented by the growth in retail sales of 24 percent compared to 2011. These figures are a clear testament to the the mall's evolution as the city's must-visit tourist and retail hub. Significantly, the strong footfall also reiterates the economic impact of our flagship mall development by creating several thousand new jobs every year and supporting the trade and logistics sector of Dubai, which are key contributors to the economy."
Alabbar added: "The mall's record visitor arrival has also been the result of the sustained value addition that we are focused on creating for our guests. Apart from the choice of global brands and the extensive repertoire of over 1,200 outlets, the mall's leisure attractions are unique and serve as a magnet for tourists. We have also further strengthened accessibility by creating new parking spaces and completing the Metro Link which connects the Dubai Metro station to the mall. The Dubai Mall has clearly set a global benchmark in mall and leisure operations, and we are building on it further with the new expansion programme across 1 million sq feet."
The Dubai Mall's new expansion will feature an unprecedented choice of world-class retail, and hospitality components, taking its total construction area to over 13 million sq ft. The highlight of the mall's retail expansion is the creation of a spectacularly designed boulevard like high-end shopping strip that will feature personalised flagship stores of international brands. Shoppers can experience the unparalleled ambience of strolling along foliage-rich walkways with water features, set on a strip lined by premium stores.
Centrally located in Downtown Dubai, the most prestigious square kilometre on earth and the flagship mega-development of Emaar Properties, The Dubai Mall also serves as the gateway to At the Top, Burj Khalifa, the world's tallest observatory deck with an outdoor terrace. The mall is fronted by the Burj Lake that is home to The Dubai Fountain, the world's tallest performing fountain, which performs an array of international compositions.
Within the mall, the 1,200 retail outlets meet all shopping requirements of visitors – from fashion wear to accessories, electronic appliances to home furnishing, the latest communication gadgets to audio-visual choices, books, jewellery and much more. Several international brands have debuted or opened their flagship stores in the mall, with the regions’ first Bloomingdale's and Galeries Lafayette serving as anchor stores. Last year, many new international retail concepts were added to the mall.
In 2012, the mall not only strengthened the offering of its dedicated fashion precinct, the 440,000 sq ft Fashion Avenue, but also introduced The Souk, an elegantly designed showcase of jewellery, accessories and traditional Arab attire outlets and handcraft stores. The Dubai Mall also unveiled The Village that offers a rich collection of denim brands and brings an outdoor community feel with tree-lined walkways, caf├ęs and restaurants. Featuring a fully retractable roof, The Village is open during winter months enabling visitors to have a true outdoor feel.
The mall hosted several celebrities last year from the film, art and music world, in addition to hosting international exhibitions and roadshows, all strengthening its appeal to visitors. In addition to the 200 F&B outlets that bring together families and friends, the mall's world-class leisure attractions including Dubai Aquarium & Underwater Zoo, with thousands of aquatic animals; SEGA Republic, the largest of its kind indoor theme park; KidZania®, the dedicated children’s city; Dubai Ice Rink, an Olympic sized ice rink; and the 22-screen Reel Cinemas that can seat over 2,800 people, all attracted the world to Dubai.
Described as 'The Centre of Now,' the US$20 billion Downtown Dubai features Burj Khalifa, the world's tallest building, several world-class hotels, thousands of residential apartments and modern offices, among others. It was in global spotlight hosting the New Year's Eve Gala which attracted a record 1.7 million visitors and was telecast live to over 2 billion people.


Tuesday, February 5, 2013

New waterbus route launched

Waterbuses will shuttle between the The Walk and The Mall at Dubai Marina

Dubai: Residents and visitors and Dubai Marina can now enjoy a quick boat journey between The Walk and The Mall as the Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) a new waterbus route.
The service, which will run every 15 minutes daily, began on Monday and will offer people an alternative and cheap mode of transport.
The new route will be operational 12 hours a day from 10am to 10pm from Sunday to Thursday, and from 12 noon to 12 midnight on the weekends.
The journey which takes around 7 to 9 minutes, will offer a seaside view of the spectacular Dubai Marina for just Dh2.
“The new waterbus line will serve the visitors and tourists of Dubai Marina, and ferry them between the Mall and The Walk in short but enjoyable cruises during which passengers will be treated to a safe transit, picturesque scenes and charming water views,” said Eisa Abdul Rahman Al Dossari as he launched the service.
The Waterbus, which provides a convenient and safe transit experience across Dubai Creek, is fitted with luxurious seats with ample room, LCD screens and other features that make passengers on board, special needs included, enjoy a unique transit experience.


Saturday, February 2, 2013

DSF adds Dh117b in 17 years

Visitor numbers have increased from 1.6m in 1996, when it started, to 4.3m in 2012, a 168.7% increase

 Dubai: Faisal Vahedna invested a few thousand dirhams to start his electronics retail business, Vahedna Trading, in Deira in 1996.

Prior to that, he worked for 12 years in his uncle’s shop, Ashrafi Electronics, where he learned the tricks of the trade.
It was in the middle of an unprecedented retail boom in Dubai, caused by the growing demand for electronics and household appliances in Russia, the Central Asian and East European countries — that have been liberated from socialist regimes and have moved to a free economy, something which triggered the demand. Due to easy accessibility, Dubai benefited most. As a result, electronics thrived in the city.
Vahedna Trading is in Sabkha, Deira – the meeting place between Dubai’s wholesale and retail businesses. On one side of Sabkha lies Murshid Bazaar – the wholesale market, close to the Dubai Creek where wooden dhows load a large number of electronics and household goods destined for a number of countries including Iran, India, Pakistan and African coastal markets.
Sabkha, Dubai’s centre for trade, wholesale and retail activities, also remains crowded in the evenings – as a meeting place for traders and customers. It is always abuzz with shoppers. It was an ideal location for Vahedna to expand his business. However, his wholesale and re-export business picked up faster than retail operations.
It was no coincidence that the same year the Dubai Government also launched the annual Dubai Shopping Festival (DSF)  to boost the emirate’s retail, trade and tourism sectors.
From a small shop Vahedna Trading today has grown into a Dh1 billion turnover company that deals in electronics, household and information technology items, thanks to DSF, among other factors.
“Many people think that the DSF attracts just tourists and shoppers. During the last 17 years, my company has attracted so many traders, who later came back to place large-scale orders,” Vahedna tells Gulf News. “After their first visit, most of them usually start trading with us.”
His retail business also thrived due to the high influx of tourists and shoppers. He says, this way, Dubai has managed to divert many traders from other major hubs – such as Singapore and Hong Kong to the emirate.
“All of them are here for the DSF,” Vahedna says.
Millions of visitors spend billions of dollars during the DSF every year to help boost the economy of Dubai and the UAE, especially the retail, tourism, airlines, transport, restaurants and entertainment sectors that thrive on higher sale throughout its duration.
Government strategy
More than 50 million visitors spent a total of Dh117 billion during the DSF so far, a spokesperson of Dubai Events and Promotions Establishment (DEPE), organisers of DSF, told Gulf News. This translates to a per capita spending of Dh2,340 ($638) per visitor to the DSF.
The DSF was also part of the government’s strategy to diversify its economy and reduce dependency on hydrocarbon to make it more sustainable once oil runs out. Since its inception, it has been paying off the emirate rich dividends year after year.
Most retailers make provisions for larger inventories for DSF. “We usually witness a 25 per cent increase in sales of electronics, household and IT products,” Salim M.A., Director of Lulu Hypermarkets, in Dubai, tells Gulf News. “We start building inventories for the DSF two months prior to the festival to ensure the smooth supply of the goods.”
Every year, the Dubai Government ropes in key private sector entities in a sponsorship programme to part-finance the DSF budget that are spent in advertisement, marketing and promotion of the event at a grand scale to help attract tourists and shoppers.
The success and the return on investment are so high that the same business houses, conglomerates and corporations come back every year to support the government in organising the DSF. This is perhaps the best example of how public-private partnerships could boost a local economy.
“This remarkable journey of success was planned by Dubai’s leadership decades ago, for their farsighted vision and their determination to achieve the set plans has seen the city through challenging times,” Shaikh Ahmad Bin Saeed Al Maktoum, President of Dubai Civil Aviation and Chairman and CEO of Emirates airline and Group, said in a statement issued last month.
When one thinks of Dubai, the image one portrays of the city is that of a hub for trade, tourism, retail and financial services. Others consider Dubai – the city of superlatives – as a collection of some tall towers. Very rarely does one realise that Dubai is also a place abuzz with events throughout the year.
It is the events sector that makes things happen in this city of two million people and  attracts more than 10 million tourists annually – be it for business deals, exhibition, conferences, corporate meetings or  sports.  These activities bring people closer and bridges cultures in the true to the spirit of the DSF slogan, “One World, One Family, One Festival”.
“Foreign visitors during this festival have increased from 1.6 million in 1996 (since inception) to 4.3 million in 2012, a 168.7 per cent increase over 17 years which indicates the success of this event year on year,” Bharath M, analyst at Frost and Sullivan, told Gulf News. According to a research by YouGov, overall consumer spending during DSF has a significant impact on Dubai’s economy, bringing in more than Dh14.7 billion during the 2012 DSF – or the equivalent of $1 billion per week.
Gassan Aridi, Chief Executive Officer of Alpha Tours, told Gulf News: “The DSF has been a major contributor to Dubai’s tourism industry and the overall economy. We usually receive 25 to 30 per cent more visitors to Dubai when hotel occupancy remains high. Besides, tour operators remain extremely busy with increasing number of city tours, desert safari, dinner cruises and other activities.”
Total shopping spend rose from Dh8.7 billion to Dh8.9 billion, and accommodation spend was up from Dh2.7 billion to Dh2.8 billion, DEPE said in a report. “Our offering in retail and events is, we believe, second to none, and we will strive through a coordinated government approach and through continued and innovative partnerships between our public and our private sectors,” Sami Al Qamzi, Director General of the Department of Economic Development, said in a statement in December.
The International Festivals and Events Association (IFEA), the world’s leading events trade association, crowned Dubai with the prestigious “World Festival and Event City 2012” recognition last year in the category for cities with a population of more than one million. DSF was one of the highlighted events in the award entry.
“The Dubai Shopping Festival has broken new ground in establishing tourism and retail standards and benchmarks. Further, DSF has also successfully showcased the capability of Dubai and the UAE in hosting events of an international scale,” Ebrahim Saleh, Coordinator-General of DEPE, told Gulf News.
“Through a combination of world-class events and mind-boggling shopping-related offerings DSF has succeeded in creating a base of tens of thousands of repeat visitors, as well as enticing new tourists to visit Dubai during DSF,” he says.
The power of DSF sale are felt not only by the retailers, but also the credit card brands, such as Visa, which remained a loyal partner of the DSF for a long time. International visitors to the UAE have spent over $153 million  on their Visa cards in the first week of Dubai Shopping Festival 2013, registering a massive 34 per cent year-on-year growth over the first week of DSF 2012, according to statistics issued today by Visa. Karim Beg, Visa’s Head of Regional Marketing for MENA, said, “Visa achieved a 22 per cent year on year growth during DSF 2012, with inbound card spend totalling more than  $497 million (Dh1.82 billion) compared to $406 million during DSF 2011.”


Mohammed bin Rashid orders implementation of AED2.5bn ‘Nakheel Mall’

UAE Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum paid a visit to Nakheel headquarters in Dubai where he was briefed on the company’s future investment projects

Sheikh Mohammed ordered that necessary measures be taken to commence the implementation of the ‘Nakheel Mall’ project located on the beachfront of the Palm Jumeirah at a cost of AED2.5 billion. Additionally, His Highness also ordered the commencement of ‘The Pointe’ project which overlooks the Jumeirah Beach Hotel and the Atlantis resort at a cost of AED800 million.
Accompanying Sheikh Mohammed on his visit to the Nakheel headquarters were Dubai Crown Prince Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Dubai Deputy Ruler Sheikh Maktoum bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Chairman of Dubai Civil Aviation and Chief Executive of Emirates Group Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Sheikh Saeed bin Maktoum bin Juma Al Maktoum, Director of Dubai Ruler’s Court Mohammed Ibrahim Al Shebani and Dubai Director of Protocol and Hospitality Khalifa Saeed Suleiman.
Nakheel Chairman Ali Rashid Lootah presented a detailed briefing to Sheikh Mohammed on the two new projects including amenities, landscaping, project designs and premium services to be offered. The visiting delegation also watched a video presentation about the projects.
The ‘Nakheel Mall’, with its exquisite view of Al Ittihad Garden and the Atlantis at the Palm Jumeirah will be built on an area of one million square feet and will feature a 200-room state-of-the-art hotel, 200 hotel apartments and a restaurant with a panoramic sea view.
Nakheel Chairman briefed Sheikh Mohammed and his accompanying delegation on ‘The Pointe,’ which is considered a new destination for dining and relaxed entertainment located at one of the most iconic locations in Dubai; Palm Jumeirah. Located at the tip of The Palm just across the bay from Atlantis, ‘The Pointe,’ is a large scale complex nestled among gardens and the inner calm waters of the bay boasting a combination of bustling retail shops, high end restaurants as well as an exciting mix of cafes and patisseries.
Lootah took note of Sheikh Mohammed’s suggestions on including additional elements to the designs which add to the appeal of the new projects.
Sheikh Mohammed expressed satisfaction with the new projects and said, “We to continue in the path of excellence… as Dubai always have.”
Continuing his visit, Sheikh Mohammed and the accompanying delegation toured Nakheel offices, sales hall and was briefed on the progress at different projects carried out by the company. His Highness also greeted customers present at the premise.
Lootah thanked Sheikh Mohammed on his continuous support and his guidance that helped Nakheel regain its leading position as a master developer of real estate, tourist and commercial projects