Emaar Properties, the developer behind the world's tallest tower, gave yet another vote of confidence to the recovering Dubai market yesterday when it announced it was pushing ahead with plans to build the second-tallest building in Downtown Dubai.
The new scheme, the 63-storey The Address The BLVD, will be 340 metres high and will comprise a 200-room five star hotel and 542 serviced apartments close to the Burj Khalifa and Dubai Mall.
The hotel will be the sixth The Address Hotel in Emaar's portfolio. The decision reflects its increasing focus on retail and hotel development, compensating for the slowdown in the property market.
Emaar said work on the project, which will include studios, and one, two, three and four-bedroom serviced apartments, would start shortly and was scheduled for completion in early to mid-2015.
The developer will launch sales of the studio, one, two and three-bedroom serviced residences later this month.
"The launch is a strong reiteration of the positive growth trends in Dubai's real estate sector, led by the significant increase achieved in tourism, hospitality, retail and foreign trade," said Ahmad Al Matrooshi, the managing director for Emaar Properties.
"It also highlights Emaar's commitment to strengthen our recurring revenues through our investments in the hospitality sector."
It said average occupancy in its existing Dubai hotels averaged about 85 to 90 per cent through the year.
It added it expected to benefit from an increase in the hospitality sector, which it said in the first three months of this year had resulted in the number of guests at Dubai hotels increasing by 9 per cent and the number of nights they stayed increasing by 22 per cent.
Emaar declined to comment on the cost of the project.
But it said the total Emaar Downtown projects would have an end value of approximately US$20 billion (Dh73.46bn).