x Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 20 January 2018

What to consider when spending Dh6m on a luxury Dubai apartment

Property expert Mario Volpi explains the five key elements apartment buyers in Dubai should consider when property hunting to ensure they pick a pad that holds its value.

A customer browses the selection of property adverts posted at the Better Homes office in the Gold and Diamonds Souk in Dubai. Lauren Lancaster /The National
A customer browses the selection of property adverts posted at the Better Homes office in the Gold and Diamonds Souk in Dubai. Lauren Lancaster /The National

I want to buy a luxury apartment in Dubai with a budget of up to Dh6 million. However, I am concerned that apartments do not hold their value as well as villas in the emirate. So what, in your opinion, are the key elements I should consider when property hunting to ensure I pick a pad that will not only hold its value but also deliver a good return when I choose to sell. MA, Dubai

There are many points to consider when buying a property that is expected to hold its value and has the chance to give a decent return on investment when it is sold at a later stage. I will highlight my recommendations under separate headings to guide you through the process.

Choose the right agent

Spending any sum but especially Dh6m, which is a considerable amount, means picking the right agent to deal with is vitally important. Make sure the agency is reputable, Rera qualified and registered, and established long enough to have seen the good times and bad times, as longevity in this market is paramount. Ask your friends or work colleagues for recommendations. Look at their marketing, online or print media. What does their own website look like? Do they have the right consultants with the experience to guide you, how long have they been established, who is the management? Once you have decided on a company, employ them as your buyer agent. They will send you a Rera form B to sign. This gives the agent the right to help find you your next property.

Location, location, location

Choosing an area to live in can be confusing, as you have work and other factors thrown in. However, the three areas that are the most sought after in terms of apartments are Dubai Marina, Downtown and Palm Jumeirah. Once decided on an area, seek out the best developments within. For the Marina this could be Emaar’s six towers or Marina Promenade. For Downtown there are many developments to choose from such as The Residences, the Burj Khalifa or apartments at The Address (mall and hotel). Lastly, for the Palm, my advice would be to look at developments such as Tiara and Oceana, Marina residences or Fairmont Palm residences. All the above will have easy access to transport links – road, metro or the forthcoming tram.

View, view, view

Any chosen Marina apartment has to have a stunning view of the Marina and many will have a sea view too, depending on the height of the floor. Vistas of upmarket yachts and movements of boats up and down the Marina will add to the allure of this criteria. The Downtown apartment must have a view of the Burj Khalifa or the dancing fountains, as these are the most sought-after attractions from buyers and tenants. Lastly, apartments on the Palm must have beautiful views of either of the Atlantis and Burj Al Arab hotels or the JBR and Marina coastline. It goes without saying that any Palm apartment has to have sea views to hold on to its value.


The three areas chosen have been selected for their proximity to existing amenities and future attractions. The Marina has Marina Walk, with its array of food and beverage outlets, quality hotels and the Marina itself. It is also close to JBR, the beach and the famous “The Walk” – very much the place to visit and socialise. The forthcoming Bluewaters island with the world’s biggest Ferris wheel and abundance of further F&B outlets and new hotels are sure to entertain us further.

Downtown is positioning itself as the centre of Dubai, and world-class attractions such as the Burj Khalifa, dancing fountains and the largest mall in the world all add to its allure. Not content with this, Emaar is developing the area further with the forthcoming opera house to host cultural events.

Not to be outdone, the Palm Jumeirah is a building marvel in itself and the attraction to live on the self-proclaimed eighth wonder of the world is hard to beat. Future developments include a large scale shopping mall, more hotels, dining outlets and an outdoor promenade to rival The Walk located at the top of the Palm, to be known as the Pointe, will keep the Palm at the forefront of future homeowners’, investors’ and tenants’ interest.

Building facilities

Lastly, the way a particular building is run, managed and maintained can make or break the investment. Upkeep of common areas, lifts and even car parks is vitally important. Seek out buildings that have 24 hour concierge and security, quality facilities – not just gym and swimming pool but extras such as steam and sauna rooms – tennis and squash courts, residents lounges, party rooms, storage facilities and visitor parking. All these extras will add to the already attractive proposition you have chosen but will ultimately ensure that when the time comes to sell on, it will still attract the right buyer.

Happy hunting.

Mario Volpi is the managing director of Prestige Real Estate in Dubai (prestigedubai.com). He has 30 years of property industry experience in the emirate and London. Send any questions to mario@prestigedubai.com


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