World’s largest mall set to grow even bigger

Dubai’s Emaar Properties will add an additional one million sq ft to The Dubai Mall as it looks to boost revenues from its retail arm, the developer said Monday.

The expansion will include new hotel rooms as well as entertainment and leisure facilities, Emaar said, without confirming the value of the project or its completion date.

“The Dubai Mall is a powerful demonstration of the competencies that Emaar has developed in retail, regarded as one of the core sectors of Dubai’s economy,” Mohamed Alabbar, chairman of Emaar Properties said in a statement. 

“The addition of modern retail, leisure and hospitality choices as part of the one million sq ft expansion will take The Dubai Mall and Downtown Dubai into the next era in retailing and lifestyle development,” he added.


Emaar is one of several Dubai-based real developers looking to grow its retail and leisure business.  State-backed Nakheel in August said it planned to more than double the size of its Dragon Mart.


The developer, which is adding 1.7 million sq ft of retail space and 5,000 parking spaces to the China-themed mall, said in December it had leased one million sq ft of retail space in just five days.

Nakheel in January announced details of The Point at Palm Jumeirah, its first new Palm project since Dubai’s real estate market crashed. The developer will include shops, computer- controlled fountains, a marina and a public walk on the tip of the palm-shaped island.

Visitors to Emaar’s leisure attractions increased 13 percent in 2011 to more than 4.75 million, the real estate giant said Sunday. Reel Cinemas, operated by Emaar Retail, recorded 2.2 million visitors last year while the Dubai Aquarium & Underwater Zoo at Dubai Mall served 1.1 million residents and tourists.

Dubai, home to some of the world’s lavish shopping malls and hotels, has long been a leading shopping and leisure destination. The emirate benefited from a rise in tourists last year as the Arab Spring unrest in the region’s traditional travel hotspots diverted business towards the Gulf country.

Retail revenue in the UAE increased around 5.3 percent last year to AED113bn ($31bn) and is expected to rise to AED120bn this year, according to Business Monitor International. 

13/03/2012 Categories: Middle East UAE - Dubai