Real Estate

Retail boom

Deira Islands Night Souk image.

Nakheel awards $626m contracts for three retail developments

Dubai-based master developer Nakheel has awarded construction contracts worth nearly Dh2.3 billion ($626 million) for three major projects in its growing retail portfolio in the UAE.

The projects are the Deira Islands Night Souk, Warsan Souk and The Circle Mall, which together will offer nearly 2.3 million sq ft of retail space and over 6,700 shopping, dining and entertainment outlets.

United Engineering Construction (Unec) has been appointed as the contractor for the Deira Islands Night Souk and Boardwalk under a Dh1.17-billion ($318.5 million) deal.

Deira Islands Night Souk will stretch almost 2 km along Deira Islands’ waterfront and boast 5,300 shops and nearly 100 quayside cafes and restaurants. Located just across from mainland Dubai, the Night Souk will be easily accessible by road and water, and within walking distance of hotels, residences and Deira Mall, Nakheel’s other major retail project at the islands.

All 1.2 million sq ft of leasable space at the souk was snapped up by entrepreneurs within five days of its launch, according to the Dubai developer. The souk will bring together a new generation of local traders at Dubai’s oldest and most traditional business hub, and is set to be one of the emirate’s biggest new attractions. Construction of the Night Souk is due for completion in 2018.

Meanwhile, Ginco General Contracting will carry out construction of Warsan Souk under a Dh775 million ($211 million) deal.

The Circle Mall ... house of brands.

The Circle Mall ... house of brands.

Warsan Souk will have 1,170 shops including two department stores and 30 cafes and restaurants with indoor and outdoor dining. Located between Sheikh Mohammed Bin Zayed Road and Manama Road, Warsan Souk will be a vibrant, modern destination, innovatively designed as a modern take on the traditional souk. With 650,000 sq ft of retail space, the souq will be spread across eight buildings, each comprising two floors of retail with 433 three-bedroom townhouses built above.

Already fully leased and due for completion in 2018, Warsan Souk forms part of Nakheel’s Warsan Village gated community of 934 homes, currently under construction.

The Circle Mall, meanwhile, will be built under a Dh353.75-million ($96.3 million) contract by Gulf Technical Construction. Located at Jumeirah Village Circle, the mall has 432,000 sq ft of retail space housing 235 shops, a multi-screen cinema, a health clinic, cafes and restaurants and a food court.

The Circle Mall will serve hundreds of thousands of people living in Jumeirah Village and surrounding areas, and provide a new leisure destination for residents and tourists across the rest of Dubai. Around half of the leasable space at mall is booked. Construction will begin shortly, with anticipated completion in early 2018.

Confirmed tenants at mall include Spinneys, Oscar Cinemas, Sports Market, Early Learning Centre, Mamas & Papas, Grand Optics, Tips & Toes, Bare Salon and Supercare Pharmacy. Cafes and restaurants  include Jamaica Blue, Café Nero, London Dairy, Wendy’s, Barbecue Delights, Russo’s New York Pizzeria, Nando and Al Arrab.

Nakheel’s retail portfolio is expected to become the biggest in the UAE, with 10 new large-scale developments and a growing collection of community centres on the way. The company has more than 10 million sq ft of leasable space in the pipeline, adding to the 3.4 million sq ft already in operation at its Dragon Mart and Ibn Battuta Mall.