|05 December, 2019

Where in Dubai are the super-rich splurging on multi-million-dirham homes?  

New projects such as Bluewaters Island and Dubai Harbour generated interest among investors

Image used for illustrative purpose. City skyline in Dubai.

Image used for illustrative purpose. City skyline in Dubai.

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Ultra-wealthy investors continue to invest in Dubai’s real estate, spending serious sums of money on luxury homes in established communities, a new report said.

According to Property Finder, this year, between January and October, the super-rich snapped up more than 200 apartments and villas worth over 10 million dirhams.

The most sought-after locations include Downtown Dubai, where 34 flats were sold, and Palm Jumeirah, which closed 31 deals. Together, these account for more than half of all luxury home sales during the review period.

In Downtown Dubai, buyers were interested in Emaar's IL Primo project in the Opera District, which accounted for 18 out of the total flats sold in the area. Bigger apartments in the 77-storey tower can fetch prices in excess of 18 million dirhams, according to published ads.

Posh apartments in the Royal Atlantis Resort and Residences in Palm Jumeirah seem to be a clear favourite, accounting for 13 out of the total 31 luxury apartment transactions in the first 10 months of the year. Alef Residences on the man-made island also managed to sell eight of its multi-million-dirham apartments. 

Also, this year, a lone penthouse in The One at Palm Jumeirah sold for a staggering 74 million dirhams was the second-highest price ever paid for a property in Dubai in 2019.

Other locations also saw high investor interest: Business Bay, registered five deals above 10 million dirhams. Jumeirah, Jumeirah Beach Residence and Dubai Creek Harbour netted four deals each.

New projects such as Bluewaters Island and Dubai Harbour generated interest as well, but the old favourites, such as Dubai Marina and Al Barari, didn't shine as much, accounting for only a "handful" of the transactions, Property Finder Said.

For luxury villas, residential properties in both established and new communities drew interest, but the highest performer was Dubai Hills Estate, with 47 deals above 10 million dirhams, followed by Palm Jumeirah (43), MBR City (32), Emirates Hills (22) and Jumeirah Golf Estates (13).

“Dubai Hills Estate has fared well across all price points and has been a popular community for both investors and end-users. The amenities, outdoor spaces, new shopping mall and nice mix of office and retail has been very 

attractive for buyers,” said Lynnette Abad, Director of data and research at Property Finder.  

Within Dubai Hills Estate, well-heeled buyers set their sights on Emaar’s villa projects such as Golf Place and Parkway Vistas did particularly well. 

Other luxury projects on the Palm that attracted majority of buyer interest were Signature Villas, Jumeirah Zabeel Saray, XXII Carat, Kingdom of Sheba and Emerald Palace Kempinski Hotel.

Other new villa projects that saw luxury house deals were Jumeirah Bay Island, Dubai Waterfront and Akoya by Damac. 

Traditional favourites such as Umm Suqeim, Al Barari and Polo Homes in Arabian Ranches also figured prominently in the preferences of luxury house seekers.

Dubai’s real estate market has recently witnessed an uptick in transactions, owing in part to government initiatives that seek to boost investor confidence. However, some analysts claim that the sector will continue to encounter some headwinds due to global factors, including Brexit and the US-China trade conflict.

In September, the Higher Real Estate Planning Committee was unveiled to coincide with efforts to lower the risk of oversupply in the property market, among other objectives.

Subsequently, the Dubai Land Department reported an increase in the volume and value of transactions in recent months. 

According to property consultancy firm Asteco in its Q3 2019 report, the increase in transactional activity may be the result of “increased choice, affordability, payment/ finance options” in the market.

However, it is also important to point out that Dubai’s property market is greatly driven by sentiment, Asteco said, adding, “positive/ encouraging government announcements often result in short-term peaks in activity.”

“Despite these efforts, prolonged global economic headwinds, mainly due to US-China trade tensions and uncertainties surrounding Brexit, are likely to continue to weaken employment growth and spending, which will dampen real estate investment,” said Asteco. 

(Writing by Cleofe Maceda, editing by Seban Scaria)

(seban.scaria@refinitiv.com)

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