Dubai: Nakheel will begin leasing the first zone in its Nakheel Mall by the end of the month and inviting construction bids before the middle of the year, company officials said.
The Dh2.5 billion mall is expected to be completed by 2016 and contractors will be invited to bid for its construction before the first half of 2013, Nakheel’s chairman Ali Rashid Lootah said after a presentation by the company to the UAE’s major retailers on the features of the new mall yesterday.
The developer is considering different finance options for the retail project, a Nakheel spokesperson told Gulf News. The company needs to raise Dh3.3 billion to construct the Nakheel Mall and the Dh800 million The Pointe shopping project on Palm Jumeirah.
“We need to continue to have the ability to have recurring revenues... We take a holistic picture for development and look for opportunities where we can create sustainable business,” said Sanjay Manchanda, Nakheel’s chief executive, on the potential for growth in the retail segment.
By the end of February, Nakheel will begin leasing to retailers the centre-point zone in the mall, which is divided into four zones of about 270,000 square feet each, said Adnan Hegrat, managing director of Retailcorp World at Nakheel.
“The retail industry is alive and kicking. There is big demand for retail and its one of the most successful aspects for Dubai,” Hegrat said.
Nakheel is now studying the “rental grid” of the mall before it decides on its leasing rates, he said. “There will be a new generation of retailers coming to the mall.”
Nakheel Mall, spanning over one million square feet, will include five levels of retail, a roof top plaza with fine dining restaurants, a Butterfly Park and a direct link to the Marina Residences.
It will be attached to a 300-room five star hotel of 40 storeys with a roof-top restaurant, swimming pool and lounge.
Nakheel’s sales centre was packed with representatives of major retailers in the UAE invited to view a video about the mall and discuss the project.
“It’s pretty promising,” said Manchanda of the retailers’ turnout. “It’s a much needed project on the Palm. There’s nothing to cater to people there.”
Carrefour hypermarket is considering opening an outlet at the Nakheel Mall where Palm residents have disposable income and there is a limited choice of grocery options, according to Pronob Kumar Kerr, general manager of expansion in the UAE at Majid Al Futtaim Retail.
“It’s a fantastic mall. It should work. The Palm needs a mall,” he said, but added that ease of access to the mall must be studied.