Dubai Property Guide


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Innovative Property in Dubai, the UAE and Africa

In our drive to provide our clients and potential investors with the best investment options available in the market, we are working with one of the biggest property developers in Dubai to bring to you a unique investment opportunity.

The First Group is a British-owned international property development company based in Dubai. The focus is on delivering innovative overseas property developments and solutions to meet the demands of the international property investment market.

As an emerging property market specialist and one of the region’s leading independent serviced residential and commercial building developers, The First Group prides itself on offering clients quality off-plan developments, unrivalled services and pioneering products in the UAE and Africa.

With over 25 years’ experience in the international property market and unparalleled commitment to excellence in all areas, including construction, design, finish and service, choosing to invest with The First Group offers a reliable and secure investment in one of the world’s most lucrative property markets.

Find out more here:


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Dubai Property Guide

  2. 2. HISTORY OF THE DUBAI PROPERTY MARKET THIS THRILLING EMIRATE HAS SEEN REMARKABLE PROGRESS AND ITS AMBITIOUS FUTURE PROMISES EVEN MORE TO COME. PROPERTYHistory Of The Dubai Property Market From a small settlement little over half a century ago, Dubai has been transformed into one of the most lucrative, spectacular property markets in the modern world. As with many things in the region, the discovery of vast oil reserves was the catalyst for change. Considered the second-richest Arab country, after Qatar (on a per capita basis), the UAE has just under 10% of the world’ proven oil s reserves. The wealth generated has provided a springboard for an economy which has substantially diversified, with oil now accounting for only 5.5% of Dubai’ GDP Dubai has spearheaded UAE s . development: massive reserves of capital have led the Dubai government to invest in new developments and foster an environment where global investors feel confident. The history of trying to regulate construction in Dubai can be traced back to the Dubai Land Department (, which was created in 1960 by decree of Sheikh Rashid bin Saeed Al Maktoum, the late ruler of Dubai. Following the British withdrawal in 1971, oil wealth, aided by the hike in prices during the oil crisis, gave the Dubai government the finance to invest in huge projects like the port at Jebel Ali and Dubai Dry Docks. The Dubai World Trade Centre, opened in 1979, was an early forerunner of the skyscrapers which now tower over the Sheikh Zayed Road. With a decrease in oil prices during the 1980s, Dubai’ s development faltered, but in the mid 1990s when Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum assumed the role of Crown Prince, momentum The Matrix returned with spectacular developments like the Burj Al Arab and Emirates Towers.
  3. 3. PROPERTY
  5. 5. FOREIGN INVESTORS Until this decade, only UAE Nationals could buy property in the emirate, but as Dubai’ ambitions have become increasingly s international, the market has been opened up. Expats have been able to purchase property in Dubai since 2002, and so the real estate story for outside investors began at this point. Following the economic takeoff, a number of real estate laws and regulations have been enacted, including those stipulating which areas of land can be purchased by non-UAE Nationals. The formation of the Real Estate Regulatory Agency, RERA (, reflects a series of measures introduced by the Dubai government in recent years designed to regulate the market. Since the restrictions on foreign ownership were lifted, the market has boomed and properties are selling out quickly, often before they PROPERTY History Of The Dubai Property Market are even built. The high demand and speedy transactions mean it is particularly important to work with a trustworthy developer. Depending on your budget and requirements, it may be wise to buy in the Northern Emirates early on. You’ll find lower prices and therefore have a greater chance of a higher return when you come to sell.Clockwise from top left: The First Group Tower, reception at Metro Central, living area in Metro Central Tax One of the major advantages that Dubai offers investors and Status businesses operating here is a tax free environment. Not only is there no tax on corporate profits, but the lack of personal income tax also offers a huge benefit in attracting skilled personnel to the region. In addition there are over 70 free zones in Dubai offering companies a host of benefits including 100% ownership of their businesses and no restriction on repatriation of profits to their home country. It is easy to understand why so many international corporations choose Dubai to house their global headquarters which, in turn, fuels demand for property to accommodate the migration of staff to Dubai. In addition, the price of property is more affordable than cities such as Hong Kong and Singapore, which have traditionally attracted overseas investors anxious to minimise the impact of taxation on their assets.
  6. 6. THE UAE PROPERTY MARKET NON-NATIONALS CAN FINALL GET Y INVOLVED IN ONE OF THE WORLD’S MOST EXCITING PROPERTY MARKETS. The world’ eyes are on the UAE. A relentless wave of new residential, s commercial and leisure developments are under construction, with as PROPERTYThe UAE Property Market many as 160,000 new units expected to enter the Dubai market between 2008 and 2010. As the level of interest in the region continues to rise, so does the intensity of investment in infrastructure and services. While other countries, such as the UK and US, seem hard hit by the recent economic downturn and financial crisis, the momentum in Dubai and the UAE has seen the property market remain not just stable but buoyant, and it continues to pull in overseas investors and maintain high levels of consumer confidence. Property experts and buyers in Dubai, and the Northern Emirates continue to be confident about their potential returns, backed by the strong demand for commercial and residential property, Dubai’ vibrant job s market, a blossoming tourism sector and significant population growth in the region. MARKET BUZZ In 2007 the Middle East saw the highest percentage increase of visitors in its history with air traffic rising by as much as 18%. As well as the sun, sea and high standard of living, the country’ strategic s geographical position and the security of its steady political and economic situation all combine to make living in the UAE popular with expats. The omnipresent cranes that tower over Dubai are a sign that economic slowdown has not taken hold of construction in the UAE, with a multitude of hotel, residential and commercial developments either in progress or on the drawing board. Outside interest in both commercial and residential property has helped spur a growing number of developments in the UAE. Over the past five years Dubai has experienced an extraordinary rate of growth in the property sector,
  7. 7. which, in turn, is being emulated by Northern Emirates such as Ras AlKhaimah and Umm Al Quwain.The property market in Dubai was opened up in 2002, when legislationwas introduced that allowed foreign nationals to purchase property inareas that were previously out of bounds. This brought a new pool ofoverseas buyers to the market, resulting in a property boom that hasyet to ease up. According to many developers and agents, when thenew laws came in, villas sold out in minutes – even before constructionhad begun. Further amendments came in March 2006, when non-GCC expats were given the right to buy 99 year leasehold andfreehold property in certain areas, meaning purchasers could own theland as well as the building on it. While some market analysts remain cautious about the future ofproperty in the UAE, others are more confident that the market will PROPERTY The UAE Property Marketcontinue to flourish, believing that there is still a strong level ofconsumer confidence. Various indicators support this sentiment, suchas the high occupancy levels of commercial property in Dubai and RasAl Khaimah job market figures of 640,000 jobs being created in theUAE between January and April 2008.DEMANDForecasts show that demand will continue to rise, with thousands ofnew units needed to supply Dubai’ property market by 2010. sHowever, while there is still a rush to capitalise on the thriving marketin the region, new projects will need to stand out from the others toensure future returns. As developers try their hardest to takeadvantage of profitable locations, the best are producing propertiesthat consider the needs of the market, providing sustainable residentialareas that will be attractive for the long-term.LOCATION & INFRASTRUCTUREDubai’ advancing infrastructure and the ease by which visitors can sget to and from the city by air are key draws in attracting newresidents. In an effort to improve transportation within the emirate,public transport investment has risen dramatically, with the maindevelopment being the eagerly anticipated Dubai Metro. The Metroshould prove extremely convenient for commuters and has alreadybegun to have an effect on house prices, with a price-hike clusterwhere property is located close to Metro stations. This rise hasparticularly affected the property around key areas on the Metro’ Red sLine, which will open on 9th September 2009. The Green Line is dueto be completed in March 2010. Property developers have taken note
  8. 8. of the trend and are seeking ways in which their own developments can benefit from the boom. The Metro is expected to connect to an increasing amount of other improved public transport in the area, including buses, trams, abras and water taxis. New residents arriving in Dubai are also interested in residential areas that are well designed and self contained. Many expats looking for a place to live are attracted to areas that offer easy access, as well as a wide range of retail outlets, banks and services close by. Popular new residential areas like Jumeirah Beach Residence (JBR), The Springs, and the Green Community try to create a community feel and provide a good range of amenities, combining residential areas with key retail outlets, so look out for similar developments . Dubai’ property success is well-known, but new buyers should s take note of the less developed Northern Emirates such as Umm Al PROPERTYThe UAE Property Market Quwain and Ras Al Khaimah, which are showing the same potential that Dubai showed in past years. Ras Al Khaimah has several new five-star hotels in the pipeline, as well as upmarket property, which will cater to the 2.5 million tourists who are expected to visit by 2012. Developers in Umm Al Quwain also have plans to produce premium property in order to cater to high-end visitors. Both emirates are attempting to encourage investment and become key players by focusing on improving infrastructure and providing, for the time being, comparatively lower sale prices than emirates like Dubai and Abu Dhabi. RAPID PRICE INCREASE The past five years have seen average property valuations undergo a huge rise of 300%, according to the UAE Real Estate Market Review conducted by Al Mal Capital in March 2008. This has fuelled investor confidence in the market. Despite economic problems around the globe, the UAE is looking strong and prices remain steady. According to leading property advisors Knight Frank, the value of property in Dubai has increased by 52.6% over the year. This percentage change puts the city ahead of other markets such as London that has an increase of less than 2%. Overall, investment in the emirates remains one of the most stable choices, with more growth forecast to follow. Property hunters who are looking for more affordable housing can make the most of this opportunity to look at emerging markets in the Northern Emirates which offer lower prices than Dubai and Abu Dhabi. Yasmin
  9. 9. The UAE Property MarketPROPERTY
  10. 10. UAE HOTSPOTS THE BEST PLACES TO BUY Dubai is a place of unprecedented opportunity for investment in real estate. With an economy that’ booming at a time when much of the s rest of the world stutters, a rapidly expanding portfolio of residential and commercial developments on a scale rarely witnessed, and a strategic position as a stable regional business hub and growing global holiday destination with year-round appeal, few places can be considered as attractive when it comes to property investments. Elsewhere in the UAE, emerging emirates such as Ras Al Khaimah and Umm Al Quwain are starting to follow Dubai’ lead and offer good s PROPERTYUAE Hotspots prospects for investors. Demand for buying property has been rising steadily in Dubai since the freehold property market was opened up to non-Nationals in 2002. Six years on and the scene has begun to mature from its infant days, but if anything the appetite for developing and snapping up real estate has grown immeasurably. As a city popular with expat workers from all parts of the world, as well as holidaymakers, there is constant demand for property, and Clockwise from top: swimming pool at The Diamond, The Bridge, Metro Central at night large-scale developments are mushrooming to keep pace. In 2007 alone, 6.44 million people visited Dubai, and the emirate has seen a sustainable population growth history of over 7% per annum. With its worldwide monopoly on the biggest, the tallest and the most bizarre developments, including projects such as Dubailand, The Palm and The World, Dubai is set to become a huge leisure resort, with predicted annual visitor numbers rising to 15 million by 2015. The UK’ Wealth Ranking Survey by NatWest International showed s that expats can earn up to 40% more on average in Dubai than their peers back home. This, along with Dubai’ focus on the development s of other new resources, is resulting in a relentless demand for property that far outstrips supply. Both inland and on the water, Dubai is maximising its potential. Landmark projects are springing up all over town, each with their own unique selling point. One of the biggest, most ambitious projects is Dubailand, set to become the world’ biggest tourism, leisure and entertainment s attraction when it is complete. At more than twice the size of Disneyland and DisneyWorld combined, it will be comprised of
  12. 12. individual themed ‘worlds’, and will feature attractions including numerous hotels, the largest shopping mall in the world (Mall of Arabia), theme parks, a snowdome, and Formula One World. Some phases, such as The Autodrome and Global Village, are already open, and others, such as Sports City (p.59), which will feature three world- class sporting arenas, state-of-the-art facilities, and commercial, residential and leisure properties, are in the final stages of development. Another inland mega-development is the Business Bay and Downtown Burj Dubai area. Sitting between Dubailand and the coast, Business Bay is based around an extension to the creek that will stretch up to Sheikh Zayed Road at Interchange 2 before continuing to the sea. Construction is well underway on the area that is set to become the commercial and business capital of the region, and when eventually finished around 2015 there will be around 220 towers. At PROPERTYUAE HotspotsActive Dubai the heart of the adjacent Downtown Burj Dubai development is the world’ tallest building, Burj Dubai (Dubai Tower), which dominates the s landscape and can be seen from all over Dubai. The tower is near completion and will house retail outlets, offices, apartments and international chain and boutique hotels. The Downtown development also houses Dubai Mall, and business and residential complexes. The area informally known as ‘New Dubai’, around 20km south- west of the traditional centre of the city, has sprung up at a rapid pace in the last few years. Residential areas such as Emirates Hills, The Greens, The Springs and The Lakes are now firmly established communities, while construction of residential towers continues at the 56 high-rise metropolis that is the glitzy Dubai Marina. Media City, Internet City and Knowledge Village are attractive free zones for international businesses, helping to swell the population by providing desirable employment opportunities and heightening property demand in turn. Across Sheikh Zayed Road from Dubai Marina are the business and residential buildings of Jumeirah Lake Towers, some already complete, which will also be a free zone and house the offices of the Dubai Multi Commodities Centre, while the Tecom zone next to Al Barsha is another development of residential and commercial units. Tecom’ s unique location, close to Mall of the Emirates and the new Metro, makes it a highly desirable spot for residents and businesses alike. It’ not just on land that Dubai is expanding though; faced with the s restrictions of a limited coastline, some smart strategic, lateral thinking Dubai Sports City and mind-boggling engineering has resulted in four colossal man- made projects that will increase the available shoreline substantially (the Palm Jumeirah alone has added nearly 80km of coastline). The
  13. 13. first of these, Palm Jumeirah, is near completion, and is home toapartments, villas and the Atlantis hotel. Two other similar, but bigger,land reclamation projects are also underway; Palm Deira at one endof town, and Palm Jebel Ali at the other are at the early stages ofdevelopment. The Waterfront project, a city-sized development, whichwill be twice the size of Hong Kong, will connect to The Palm at JebelAli. The final reclamation project, out at sea and not connected to theland at all, is ‘The World’, a collection of exclusive independentislands grouped together to form a map of the globe when viewedfrom above. It’ not just the variety of property developments that is making sDubai attractive to investors. Improved infrastructure, particularlytransportation, is set to make living in the city even more desirable.The Dubai Metro network is due to open in 2009, and will connect PROPERTY UAE Hotspots PROPERTY Active Dubai‘New Dubai’ to the creek, Bur Dubai and the airport, and all places inbetween, while the newly opened Emirates Terminal 3 at DubaiInternational Airport is a futuristic development designed toaccommodate the increased number of arrivals to the emirate. Dubai is not the only emirate that is appealing to investors either.Opportunities in the Northern Emirates are becoming increasinglyattractive too, with the markets in places such as Ras Al Khaimah andUmm Al Quwain emerging just as Dubai’ did six years ago. New sdevelopments are springing up, and these fledgling markets offer goodprospects. All in all, the UAE has become one of the most desirableproperty hotspots on the planet. 57
  14. 14. DUBAI PROJECTS Dubailand & Sports City Never short of a master plan, Dubailand will be one of the largest and most adventurous of Dubai’ developments. Bigger than the world’ s s largest and most renowned theme parks, Dubailand will be a colossal entertainment centre drawing in hundreds of thousands of visitors to its various attractions. The Dhs.35 billion plans for Dubailand earmark the development as a key player in attempts to expand family tourism in Dubai. The project, which is a massive three billion square feet, includes hotels, planetariums, culture and arts centres, large malls and retail outlets, and world-class sports facilities. On completion, the area will contain a range of entertainment facilities, including the Al Sahra Desert Resort, PROPERTYUAE HotspotsActive Dubai the Autodrome, and the Polo & Equestrian Club, which are varied enough to appeal to the whole family. Of Dubailand’ themed areas, Dubai Sports City is the first to begin s its operations. As a key sporting venue, the project will offer aficionados world-class spectator venues, sporting academies and a host of retail outlets for the more than two million people who are predicted to populate the area once it is completely off the ground in 2010. Sports City covers 50 million square feet and will also include residential areas and commercial offices, which will benefit from easy access to the new Metro system and a six-lane highway that will link the project to the rest of the UAE. 58 The development has a clear focus on providing sport enthusiasts with world-class facilities, and has linked up with several well-known names in international sport. It features an Olympic-sized pool, a cricket stadium able to seat 25,000 and developed in association with the International Cricket Council, a hi-tech multi purpose outdoor and indoor seating arena and a hockey stadium that will seat 5,000 spectators. The project also includes a golf course which has been designed by professional golfer Ernie Els. The 18 hole Els Course, which opened in November 2008, includes over 80 bunkers, is spread over 211 acres and also features the Butch Harmon Golf Academy. Six pioneering academies are based within the city including The David Lloyd Tennis Academy, The Manchester United Soccer School founded by Sir Alex Ferguson and The World Hockey Academy, all with the aim of training, nurturing and discovering the leading sports stars of the future.
  15. 15. Aside from its sports-related allure, the planned infrastructure(particularly the access to the new international airport), abundant retailoutlets and premium residential apartments make this a primarylocation within Dubai’ promising real estate market. sMetro CentralThis ground-breaking new concept in property investment, featuringsuperior hotel apartments, offers buyers a unique chance to invest inDubai’ lucrative hotel industry – a sector currently witnessing sunprecedented growth. Dubai is internationally recognised as theworld’ most vibrant hotel market, with average annual occupancy srates hitting 85%; the emirate has surpassed even established citieslike Moscow, London and New York. The 18 floor distinctive dual tower design of Metro Central features PROPERTY UAE Hotspots PROPERTY Active Dubai210 premium hotel apartments, with a choice of fully furnishedExecutive, Director and Presidential Suites, perfectly suited for short tomid-term business lets, thanks to the venture’ prime location. Nestled sin the bustling business district of Tecom in the heart of ‘New Dubai’,the area is fast becoming a thriving hub of local and internationalbusiness. It also boasts a rooftop swimming pool and Pure WhiteHealth Club located on the 14th floor, offering the height of luxury toresidents and guests and an investment opportunity not to be missed.Residential FacilitiesResidential projects in Dubai Sports City include four majordevelopments by The First Group: The Spirit, The Matrix, The Bridge 59and The Diamond, which all take full advantage of the area’ potential sappeal to new property investors. The residential and commercialproperties benefit from the developing infrastructure in the area andhave the added bonus of gaining preferential rates for recreationalfacilities within both Dubai Sports City and Dubailand. The First Group’ residential projects are designed to attract buy- sto-let investors, and each apartment provides a convenient turn-keypackage with contemporary design and high-tech facilities. As part ofthis project, The First Group offers the Wealthbuilder Programme,which has been developed to help investors get the most out of theirproperty. The scheme is designed to allow buyers to have theirapartments let out and professionally managed on their behalf for themajority of the year, apart from four weeks when it can be madeavailable to the owner.
  16. 16. The Spirit The Sprit is a high-rise building offering 19 storeys of residential space, all fully furnished with a contemporary design. Apartments are suitable for property hunters who require the convenience of a ready-made apartment. The premium design of the light-reflective building is also in keeping with its sporty location and not only includes the largest branch of the Pure White Health Club, but also offers athletic residents a rooftop jogging track. On offer are 225 executive suites, 90 one- bedroom apartments and 90 Sanctuary Suites, right on the doorstep of Sports City’ retail and leisure amenities. s The Matrix The Matrix is a residential building with an edgy design and modern feel. Ready-to-let apartments feature floor-to-ceiling windows for PROPERTYUAE HotspotsActive Dubai maximum views and distinctive balconies with views of the Els Course, the area’ waterways and sports grounds. The 30 storey building s features studios, one and two-bedroom apartments and executive studios, as well as a rooftop pool. The Bridge Offering both residential and commercial spaces, The Bridge is a desirable location for those looking for prime investment in Dubai. Its position allows businesses to have easy access to the area’ range of s facilities and amenities. Construction is underway and The Bridge has already attracted two well-known sportsmen, Michael Owen and 60 Andrew Flintoff. The building’ contemporary, chic design covers 28 s storeys, with serviced offices and premium apartments with lake views, all with easy access to the Metro system linking the area to the rest of Dubai. The complex also features the Pure White Health Club and a children’ pool. s The Diamond Construction has already begun on The Diamond, which will feature 128 fully furnished luxury apartments. The range of property on offer includes penthouses, studios and one to two bedroom apartments kitted out for investors who are keen to acquire a stylish apartment that is ready for the rental market. Apartments are designed with large living areas, a modern layout and state-of-the-art features, as well as great views of the Els course. Residents will benefit from a large outdoor swimming pool, a sun terrace with a cafe and juice bar, and access to the Pure White Health Club and nearby community centre.
  17. 17. Jumeirah Village SouthEmerging as a new self-sustained urban village community nestledconveniently between Dubai’ key road networks of Al Khail, Emirates sRoad and Al Barsha Road and perfectly situated equidistant betweenDubai International and Dubai World Central Airports, Jumeirah VillageSouth will have all the mod cons and services of a city but with theserenity of a picturesque green village community. Among the vastnetwork of tree-lined boulevards, canal waterways, parks andgardens, residents will benefit from an array of village amenitiesincluding retail areas, sports fields, healthcare facilities andinternational schools, all of which are interconnected by a uniquevillage tram system which will interconnect to Dubai’ Metro System. sThe First Group Tower PROPERTY UAE Hotspots PROPERTY Active DubaiThis development benefits from its superb location in the heart of theaffluent urban village community of Jumeirah Village South, yet isconveniently positioned opposite the amazing attractions of DubaiSports City. The portfolio of 315 carefully designed and spaciousapartments in The First Group Tower include; Executive Suites, one andtwo-bedroom apartments, all aptly named after The First Group’ key sdevelopments in the UAE. In addition, there are eight exclusive two-bedroom Diamond Penthouses designed specifically for the end-user.From fantastic-sized balconies there are views of the Canal, the tranquilCentral Park, the surrounding boulevards and the landscaped podiumwith a unique Beach Pool and luxury Pure White Health Club. 61THE NORTHERN EMIRATESRas Al KhaimahRas Al Khaimah (RAK) is the most northerly of the seven emirates,connected to Dubai an hour away by the new Emirates Roadextension. With the majestic Hajar Mountains rising as a backdrop,and the Arabian Gulf stretching out from the shore, RAK has possiblythe best scenery of any city in the UAE. If you’re visiting for the daymake time to visit the souk in the old town and the National Museum ofRas Al Khaimah, housed in an old fort. Manar Mall is a large shoppingand leisure complex, housing a cinema complex, family entertainmentcentre and watersports area. Also worth quick stops are the hotsprings at Khatt and the camel racetrack at Digdagga. Althoughrelatively unknown and undiscovered in comparison to Dubai, RAK isin the process of reinventing and rebranding itself with the aim of
  18. 18. becoming a popular tourist destination. The emirate has grown rapidly in the past four years, beginning an ambitious phase of development to turn itself into an economic powerhouse with a world-class infrastructure. Multi-million dirham government investments are being implemented for infrastructure improvements, tourism, shopping, air and port facilities and efforts to attract industry, and there are 65km of stunning beach, amazing mountain foothills and desert plains. Projects such as Al Hamra Village, Mina Al Arab, Al Murjan Island, Port Arabia (aka Khor Qurm), and the Jebel Jais Mountain Resort will add five-star hotels, sports and leisure facilities (including an outdoor ski slope) and a host of dining and entertainment options. RAK Airways is the national airline of Ras Al Khaimah operating from its International Airport on the edge of the city Taking advantage of the same fundamentals that launched Dubai PROPERTYUAE HotspotsActive Dubai as a property, business and investment haven several years ago, Ras Al Khaimah is rapidly becoming the location of choice in the UAE for savvy international property investors and holiday home buyers. RAK is already being tipped internationally as one of the region’ most s buoyant and exciting investment destinations, and investing in property here at this early stage of expansion is without a doubt a prosperous opportunity. In 2007 Ras Al Khaimah enjoyed 40% growth in tourist numbers and hotels recorded 93% occupancy levels, and predictions are that the number of visitors to the emirate will rise to 2.5 million by 2012. It is clear that this market provides an an attractive investment proposition. 62 The vibrant free-trade zone in Ras Al Khaimah (RAKFTZ) is another huge pull for local and international investors, as it allows clients to set up businesses in the UAE with 100% ownership and without paying personal or business taxes. RAK PROJECTS Yasmin This green, self contained community with low-rise buildings, penthouses and one to three bedroom apartments will attract long- term residents or those looking for a premium holiday home. Yasmin benefits from the beautiful backdrop of the Hajar Mountains and is situated conveniently close to the airport, with golf courses, beaches and the pulse of the city close to hand. The development features a hotel, a range of eateries and retail outlets, as well as lush gardens and lake or mountain views.
  19. 19. The OrchidThis development offers a mix of commercial and residential propertiesclose to the city centre. The 29 storey building will include a swimmingpool on its roof, ample parking and fantastic views. Residential suitesinclude one-bedroom apartments and suites with views of the city orthe creek. Businesses will benefit from being an hour away from Dubaiand minutes from Ras Al Khaimah International Airport. The Orchid isexpected to be completed in 2011.UMM AL QUWAINUmm Al Quwain is the second smallest of the Emirates, and hasthe smallest population. Nestled on the coast between Ajman andRas Al Khaimah, it’ a quiet place where not much has changed over sthe years, and offers a mix of cultures from traditional Emirati to PROPERTY UAE Hotspots PROPERTY Active Dubaimodern city. From the lush green mangroves lining the shores of theArabian Gulf, Umm Al Quwain stretches across the rolling arid sanddunes to the rich oasis surrounding Falaj Al Moalla 50 kilometres away. The main industries are still fishing and date cultivation. The emiratehas six forts and a few old watchtowers around the town and, with alagoon, mangroves and birdlife, it is a popular weekend spot for boattrips, windsurfing and other watersports. There are already attractionsfor holidaymakers here. The area north of the lagoon is known forbeing the activity centre of the region, with a variety of distractions tosuit all tastes, including skydiving, micro-lighting, motorsports,shooting and the popular Dreamland Aqua Park. Its simple appeal is beginning to attract investors, and a projectcurrently underway will see over 9,000 homes and a marina emerge onthe shore of the Khor Al Beidah wildlife area. Another project underdevelopment is the massive Al Salam City on the Emirates Road. Whencompleted it will feature residential districts, towers, commercial unitsand a shopping mall, and will be home to over half a million residents.Beachside At White BayLiving up to its name, the property contained within this developmentprovides beach and marina views. Choose from two to five bedroomvillas or seven-storey buildings offering one to three bedroomapartments, some with large balconies overlooking the ocean. Allapartments come fully furnished with a modern decor and up-to-datetechnology. Residents will be able to use the entertainment and leisurefacilities situated a short distance away along the beach.