His Highness Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, yesterday approved a number of mixed-use and tourism projects with an investment exceeding Dh2 billion to be developed by Wasl Asset Management Group (Wasl), a subsidiary of Dubai Real Estate Corporation (DREC).
DREC is a Dubai Government-owned property company having 25,000 housing units, mostly in the leasing and rental market.
The announcement comes following Shaikh Mohammad's visit to the headquarters of Wasl. He was accompanied by Shaikh Hamdan Bin Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai, and Shaikh Maktoum Bin Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Deputy Ruler of Dubai and Chairman of DREC.
"Stop is not part of the vocabulary in Dubai, and success is a continuous process that never stops," Shaikh Maktoum Bin Mohammad said, following the tour.
He said these new projects will enhance Dubai's position as a leading regional and international tourist destination and are part of the development projects that are "continuously reviewed to achieve best returns". The new projects are expected to help meet the rapidly growing demand from the increasing number of visitors to Dubai, as they will provide an additional 1,500 rooms in different parts of the emirate.
Dubai has more than 80,000 guest rooms in more than 500 hotels and apartments.
One of the new projects is Al Maktoum Development, a cultural project that aims to convey pride in the UAE's tradition and culture by re-designing the area that hosted the first modern hospital in the emirate, Al Maktoum Hospital.
Hesham Al Qasim, Chief Executive Officer of Wasl, said, "Since its inception, Wasl's strategy has been focused on becoming a significant contributor to the success story and economy of Dubai.
"We are pleased to be able to continue to actively support the city's position as the leading business and tourism hub in the region by providing a growing number of quality commercial and residential properties."
The focal point of the themed mixed-use master development will be a museum and comprise a traditional Arabic souq with specially selected shops and restaurants and beautifully designed urban spaces which will help create a thriving multi-cultural environment.
The development will be supported by a hotel, a serviced-apartments tower, as well as commercial and residential buildings.
A spokesperson for the Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing (DTCM) said that the new projects will boost the tourism sector.
"These will significantly contribute to Dubai's tourism and hospitality sector and in turn, help its economy."
Shaikh Mohammad has also viewed the plans for Jumeirah Beach Club development. The project combines exclusivity and proximity to the heart of the city.
Designed to be one of the top beach clubs in the world, the project includes an exclusive beach club where members can enjoy a range of premium services and world-class facilities, including a private beach, renowned spa, themed swimming pools as well as sports and recreation facilities.
Shaikh Mohammad also endorsed the new expansion plans for the Le Meridien Airport hotel and the new Muraqqabat development which comprises residential and hospitality buildings.