x Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 24 July 2017

Mushrif Mall to open by year's end

Shopping centre will house a huge fresh produce market measuring 25,000 sq metres, with stalls for fish, meat, fruit and vegetables.

Residents living in the middle of Abu Dhabi Island will have a major mall in their neighbourhood, hopefully before the end of the year. The 180,000 square metre Mushrif Mall, which will cost at least Dh1.2 billion (US$326.7 million), is expected to open in the fourth quarter. The shopping centre will house a huge fresh produce market measuring 25,000 sq metres, with stalls for fish, meat, fruit and vegetables.

The mall is being developed by Line Investments and Property, a division of the Emke Group. Saleem VI, the general manager for Emke Group, said Mushrif Mall would cater to residents from outside the city centre, especially as developments were built off the island. "[Most] malls now are located in the centre, but the city is expanding outward," he said. Mushrif Mall was originally due to open this month, but that was pushed back until after the summer due to construction delays. It will now open to coincide with its clothing stores' autumn-winter collections, said Yusuff Ali, the managing director of Emke.

Many UAE retailers struggled last year along with the rest of the world, but sales continued to grow in the capital. Abu Dhabi has a shortage of shopping facilities, analysts say, and many residents travel to Dubai to shop. The new mall is aimed at catering to residents in the Mushrif area of Abu Dhabi near Muroor and 25th streets, where there are few malls. Emke is expecting 10 million visitors to Mushrif Mall - a three-level, castle-like structure - in the first year. About 70 per cent of the mall is leased, said Mr Saleem, with stores aiming at the mid-range to premium segment.

The mall, which has been in the works for three years, will feature a Lulu Hypermarket, which is a chain of stores under Emke, as well as 26 restaurants. @Email:aligaya@thenational.ae