The Abu Dhabi Executive Authority for Affairs is set to expand its Yas Marina development by opening at least eight new cafes and restaurants.
Camper & Nicholsons (C&N), the managers of the 175-berth marina on the island, yesterday announced the planned expansion, adding that it would also be developing a 230-metre pedestrian promenade on the waterfront.
C&N appointed the property agent Knight Frank to lease the eight or nine new eateries that it said were scheduled to be completed by the third quarter of next year.
The marina, located near the Formula One racetrack and the Yas Viceroy Hotel, is already home to the Cipriani restaurant and the American sports bar Stars 'N' Bars.
The water park Yas WaterWorld is set to open this month, and the 235,000 square metre Yas Mall is scheduled to open next year.
"After successfully increasing berth occupancy this year by more than 150 per cent, in 2013 we will be turning our attention towards developing Yas Marina as a destination," said Cedric Le Rest, the marina's general manager.
"We are looking for a number of casual dining experiences along the lines of the Dubai Marina," he said.
"We don't want to compete with the hotel, but we want to provide a mix of cuisines."
Mr Le Rest did not provide comment on the rents that would be charged at the new restaurants.
The expansion prompted Cipriani to announce a makeover. Allure and Yotto, also under the Cipriani Yas Island banner, are scheduled to close in preparation for the Yas Marina expansion project.
"We are very excited about bringing an even better Cipriani experience to Yas Island guests," said Marco Boito, the restaurant's general manager.
The affairs authority bought Yas Marina from Aldar, Abu Dhabi's biggest developer, in January last year as part of a package to buy Dh10.9 billion (US$2.96bn) of the company's infrastructure assets on Yas Island, and Dh5.5bn of residential units and land.
Aldar remains the developer for Yas WaterWorld and Yas Mall.