Waterfront developments to boost regional growth in yachting and marina industry
The marina and yachting industry in the Middle East is currently witnessing strong growth potential. According to Simon Arrol, Director of Homeport, the region's leading marina and yachting operations firm, new marina developments in Dubai are estimated to add 4,500 marina berths to the existing capacity in the next five years.
"With the current rise in waterfront developments, we estimate that in the next ten years there is potential for an explosive growth in yacht ownership, resulting in greater demand for marinas in the region," said Arrol.
Currently, the UAE has seven marinas and boating clubs with an additional four scheduled to be built in the near future. Kuwait currently sports seven marinas and boating clubs and another marina is due to be constructed in the near future. Dubai is the undoubted centre of the Gulf leisure industry with an increasing number of boat builders serving the Gulf and the European markets. While the main focus for leisure boating in the region is on fishing and diving, cruising on larger yachts is gaining in popularity and there are nearly 1,500 larger leisure yachts in the Gulf region mainly in Kuwait and the UAE.
Furthermore Dubai is now one of the world's leading tourist destinations with its main emphasis on a marina lifestyle. Massive waterfront projects in Dubai and the surrounding region have generated an increased demand for leisure boats, equipment and associated services. Due to the significant rise in the number of marinas and related activity currently witnessed in Dubai, Homeport (www.homeport-marinas.com), has announced its plans to relocate to Dubai Maritime City, as part of its overall strategy of laying added emphasis on the Middle East.
"Homeport will greatly benefit from the professional and world-class environment of Dubai Maritime City that will provide them with improved contact with boat and equipment builders, repairs and event organizers, all activities that are key to the growth of yachting and marinas," said Amer Ali, Project Manager of Dubai Maritime City.
Homeport specializes in the design and management of marinas and provides consultancy to architects and property developers on the best way to design a marina and to integrate it aesthetically and operationally with the waterfront property. Apart from investing in marina, they also manage the marina's Capitainerie services such as yacht charter, brokerage, sea school, insurance and boat repairs.
Dubai Maritime City will be a 216-hectare manmade peninsula, and will create an iconic, multidimensional maritime centre providing a unique world-class environment for the global maritime community. Dubai Maritime City is headed by Sultan Ahmed Bin Sulayem, Executive Chairman.
© 2005 Al Bawaba (www.albawaba.com)
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