Dubai: Despite reports of slowing demand amid weak oil prices, Dubai continues to attract a great deal of interest from the ultra-rich. A new review of prime real estate markets around the world has ranked the emirate, along with two other cities in the Gulf, as one of the top 50 destinations that the wealthiest are most attracted to.
The study into the buying habits of ultra-high-net-worth individuals (UHNW), those with a net worth of $30 million (Dh110 million) or more, showed that Dubai is the most desirable city in the Arab world in which to acquire a luxury apartment or villa.
The Alpha Cities Index is part of the Global Property Handbook by consultant Wealth-X, Warburg Realty and Barnes International Realty. It has put Dubai in the 36th position globally, while Abu Dhabi landed the 50th spot and Kuwait the 42nd position.
The ultra-wealthy are constantly on the lookout for opportunities to invest in. About 10 per cent of them are believed to have owned five properties or more. The index, which ranks the overall attractiveness of a city for rich people when planning to buy a new property, seeks to incorporate the “trifecta of demands” from this type of buyers – the ideal city property must satisfy a range of practical, emotional and financial considerations.
Overall, London took the cake as the most favourite of the ultra-rich. It has unmatched appeal to the wealthy, from culture to financial security, despite recent tax reforms. It is followed by New York, Tokyo, Sydney and Paris in the top five.
“This report is the first-ever attempt at putting the global real estate market into perspective,” said Frederick Warburg Peters, CEO of Warburg Realty. “Using the resources of three companies, we’ve taken a deep dive into where the world’s highest earners are living, playing and investing – and explored the practical, emotional and financial factors involved in their buying decisions.”
Property experts said that the Dubai’s top-of-the-line infrastructure, facilities and cosmopolitan lifestyle are a big draw for moneyed international buyers.
“Dubai remains an appealing investment destination for regional investors due to its central location, shared religious and cultural values and cosmopolitan lifestyle, world-class infrastructure and a broad range of facilities for business and tourists,” said Okbah Abdulkarim, COO of Artar Real Estate Development.
According to the company, the emirate’s prime locations, such as Dubai’s Downtown district, are particularly attractive to investors from Saudi Arabia and other countries in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) region who want the best of both traditional and multicultural worlds.
“We have not experienced reduced enquiries due to oil prices as our property appeals to a wide range of end users and investors. We are not reliant on the type of buyers affected by the drop in oil revenue.”
Top ten picks for the ultra-wealthy:
1. London, United Kingdom
2. New York, United States
3. Tokyo, Japan
4. Sydney, Australia
5. Paris, France
6. Chicago, US
7. San Francisco, US
8. Osaka, Japan
9. Toronto, Canada
10. Washington, DC, US