A ‘mid-size’ firm that thinks big

PWSaeed Al Qatami, CEO of Deyaar l Image Credit: Courtesy of Deyaar

It is fair to say that Dubai real estate developer Deyaar is having something of an eventful year. Last month the company opened online registration for Afnan District, the first phase of Midtown by Deyaar, an ambitious 1.2-million-sq-ft project consisting of 27 buildings that share a one-level podium covering retail, parking and essential services.

Featuring a huge green concourse, Midtown is situated in International Media Production Zone (IMPZ), close to the new Al Maktoum International Airport. The community will benefit from new infrastructure developments such as Dubai Metro connectivity and proximity to the newly opened City Centre Me’aisem mall.

Afnan District includes seven residential developments with a total of 659 apartment units in varying sizes. It is divided into 132 studios, 374 one-bedroom apartments, 143 two-bedroom apartments and 10 three-bedroom apartments. Prices start at Dh397,000 and construction is scheduled to begin before the end of the year.

“Afnan District is a residential area with a children’s playground, retail spaces and a fitness centre all in close proximity for the convenience of the residents,” says Saeed Al Qatami, CEO of Deyaar. “The neighbourhood is set to create a green community environment by incorporating 3.7 hectares of landscaped terrain.”

Main projects

Discussing the financial aspects, he says even if the real estate market is down, the project will fetch a return on investment of 7-8 per cent. “Our sources of financing will definitely be from the banks and the sales proceeds, along with our own finance inputs.”

Deyaar was out in force at last September’s Cityscape Global to showcase two other big projects: Montrose and The Atria. The Montrose is taking shape at Barsha South at the extension of Umm Suqeim, towards Mohammad Bin Zayed Road. The two residential towers consist of 68 one-bedroom, 68 two-bedroom, five three-bedroom and two four-bedroom apartments. The project is located adjacent to Miracle Garden, within easy driving distance of both Mall of the Emirates and The Dubai Mall.

The Atria is a 1.25-million-sq-ft luxury mixed-use twin-tower complex located in the Business Bay district. The development will feature studios, one-, two- and three-bedroom apartments and three-bedroom duplex units across a 30-floor complex. Offering panoramic views of the Burj Khalifa, Business Bay Canal and the Dubai Stables, the hotel apartment tower will include a five-star spa, gym, infinity pool on the 25th floor and fine dining restaurants. The tower is scheduled for handover in the first half of 2017.

Hospitality projects in general are high on the agenda for Deyaar, which signed an agreement with Millennium & Copthorne Hotels during Cityscape to develop and operate Sharia-compliant hotel projects in the UAE, totaling about 1,000 keys.

“Deyaar has allocated up to 1 million sq ft of land for hospitality projects as part of our growth strategy,” says Al Qatami. “We have already announced several hotels and hotel apartment projects as part of our ongoing development pipeline. As a logical progression, we decided to expand our hospitality portfolio and commenced serious conversations with reputed and established international hotel operators such as Millennium & Copthorne.

“This reiterates our commitment to introduce new hospitality units into Dubai’s vibrant tourism sector and contribute in helping the emirate achieve its tourism objective of adding 160,000 new hotel rooms by 2020. We are a mid-sized developer with very definite plans, and we wanted to work with someone who both understood Sharia compliancy, and was a proven quality hotel operator. That is why Millennium & Copthorne is the right fit.”

Meeting targets

Ali Hamad Lakhraim Alzaabi, President and CEO of Millennium & Copthorne Hotels Middle East and Africa (MEA), says the partnership is part of aggressive growth plans for the MEA, with an aim to open 100 hotels by 2020.

“We believe that our agreement with Deyaar will help us achieve our targets within the set time frame,” says Alzaabi.

Meanwhile, for Deyaar the bottom line is looking very healthy. The company has also reported a consolidated net profit of Dh85.5 million for the second quarter, up by 37.5 per cent from Dh62.4 million during the same period last year.

Source: Emma Procter, Special to Property WeeklyPW


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