Emaar Properties, the global property developer of integrated lifestyle communities, has announced an ambitious expansion of its flagship asset, The Dubai Mall, to add over 1 million square feet to the existing 12 million square feet development.
The expansion to the mall, which hosted more than 54 million visitors in 2011 to become the world’s most-visited shopping and leisure destination, and also recorded robust visitor arrivals in January 2012, will take The Dubai Mall and Downtown Dubai into the next era in retailing, entertainment and lifestyle.
Emaar’s team has been working on the expansion plan for the past 12 months. The new addition will include the introduction of new hotel rooms as well as entertainment and lifestyle choices. Located in the heart the prestigious Downtown Dubai, described as ‘The Centre of Now,’ The Dubai Mall currently has over 1,200 stores and 160 F&B outlets. This will be further strengthened with several additions and extensions to its retail spread.
Mr. Mohamed Alabbar, Chairman, Emaar Properties, said: “The Dubai Mall is a powerful demonstration of the competencies that Emaar has developed in retail, regarded as one of the core sectors of Dubai’s economy. Our contribution builds on the strategic vision and development goals outlined by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, UAE Vice President & Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai.
“The record visitor footfall of over 54 million achieved by The Dubai Mall in 2011 is a compelling testament on the success achieved by Dubai and the mall in attracting visitors from all over the world. We are further building on this through our new expansion plan. The addition of modern retail, leisure and hospitality choices as part of the 1 million sqft expansion will take The Dubai Mall and Downtown Dubai into the next era in retailing and lifestyle development.”
Mr. Alabbar explained that the expansion is in line with the continuous evolution in customer expectations and aspirations. “Just as the expectations of customers are changing, the retailing sector is also witnessing rapid shifts. Through our expansion programme, we will use the most advanced technologies to offer an integrated mix of retail and entertainment that will meet the requirements of our visitors.”
Emaar recently launched a project to build a 820-metre long pedestrian link that directly connects the Burj Khalifa/The Dubai Mall Metro Station with the mall, scheduled to be operational in 2013. “The overall expansion programme will not only consolidate The Dubai Mall as the most visited shopping and tourism centre but will also establish Downtown Dubai as the most desirable lifestyle destination in the world,” said Mr. Alabbar.
With a total internal floor area of 5.9 million sqft, The Dubai Mall now has 3.77 million sqft of gross leasable space. The leisure choices in the mall include Dubai Aquarium & Underwater Zoo, which holds the Guinness World Record for the largest acrylic viewing panel; the Olympic sized Dubai Ice Rink; the region’s first SEGA Republic; KidZania®, the only one of its kind children’s edutainment centre in the entire Middle East region; and the 22-screen Reel Cinemas, one of the region’s largest megaplexes that can seat over 2,800 people. The spectacular Dubai Fountain in the waterfront promenade of the mall attracts thousands of visitors every day.
Downtown Dubai, the US$20 billion flagship development of Emaar Properties, features Burj Khalifa, the world’s tallest building, seven world-class hotels, thousands of residential apartments, modern offices and The Dubai Fountain, among other attractions.