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We love how spacious the villa is — a five-bedroom property in Al Furjan. We use the bedroom downstairs as an office for my husband to work from home. He needs to have a quiet space to get some peace when the children are home, as we use the family room upstairs as a playroom. Gardens tend to be a considerable size here too, so we have plenty of space for the children to play outside, although the low fences and lack of privacy means we don't often use the outside areas ourselves as we feel as though we're overlooked by other villas.
As Al Furjan is a reasonably new community, our villa is in great condition. We were particularly impressed with the finishing in the kitchen and bathrooms; having modern fittings and a new property were key priorities when we were house hunting. And although we're in a freehold community with a private landlord, he is excellent at attending to any maintenance issues.
There are plenty of parks within the community for our children to play in, which means we have easy access to something to do. This helps as we're so far out of central Dubai, and going anywhere can be a bit of a nightmare as the access road we were hoping would be built hasn't materialised yet. We've been told there will be a community pool and clubhouse soon, similar in style to the one in Jumeirah Islands. This will be a huge benefit and we're hoping it will also bring more of a cohesive community feel to the development.
Traffic can be a problem, especially if we're trying to leave the community via Discovery Gardens. To get to school in the Springs, we have to take the back exit and do a long loop, although it's much quicker getting home along the new road past Jumeirah Lakes Towers (JLT). Infrastructure is definitely improving, but right now it's not at a level that makes life easy for us. Having said that, there are metro stations at JLT and Ibn Battuta, and we understand there's going to be a station in the Al Furjan development in the next few years.
We're close to Dubai Marina, Jumeirah Beach Residence and JLT, so we have plenty of options leisurewise. Ibn Battuta is a great mall with quiet periods so we can get our shopping done easily, and we also have plenty of retail options available both locally and in nearby communities such as the Springs. Facilities such as schools and medical providers are available in the communities close to us and in Jebel Ali.
Reaching our local options such as the Geant between Al Furjan and Discovery Gardens can be a challenge with the lack of infrastructure, and because we're so far from central Dubai, we feel our social circles are somewhat restricted to our end of town and we miss out on spending time with friends who live more centrally.
We've lived here for two years now and negotiated a very reasonable rent when we signed the lease, so we feel like we're getting great value for money. Rents have increased since we moved in, and we think they're only likely to keep going up as facilities become available both in the community and in the area.
Katie Britt and her family from the UK lease a five-bedroom villa at Al Furjan, a freehold master development by Nakheel in Jebel Ali. Rents for properties similar to the Britts' home range from Dh280,000-Dh320,000 according to the Real Estate Regulatory Agency's rental index.
Get a glimpse of The Springs - A very self-contained community
Source: Catherine Rankin Harper, Special to Property Weekly