Studies show living with a sea view makes people happier and healthier. We look at Dubai waterfront communities that could fit the bill.
No one wants to look out of their window and into the neighbour’s kitchen. On the other hand, scientists are touting the benefits of oceanside living, noting how seeing and hearing the sea lulls people into a natural state of relaxation and helps rejuvenate the mind and body.
This is great news for stressed-out urbanites, but also for Dubai’s waterfront community developers.
Mustafa Pooya, chief commercial officer of Select Group, the largest private developer in Dubai Marina with 2,500 units already delivered and another 2,500 under way, knows all about the value of a great view.
“In any mature market, no matter where you are in the world, a great view will always come at a premium. In Dubai Marina that registers at a 30-50 per cent premium with buyers willing to invest more to secure an amazing view,” he says.
“For a two-bed unit with a marina waterfront view, we are talking as high as Dh3.2 million against Dh2.4 million for a rear-facing unit and it’s a similar story with our one-bed unit. People like to buy a prime-facing unit because when things soften slightly then there’s always an exit opportunity for a property with a good view, plus they rent more quickly,” he adds.
Khalaf Ahmad Al Habtoor, founding chairman of Al Habtoor Group, also rates visual stimulation as a major selling point. “When buying a property people take into account several added value factors,” Al Habtoor. “The first is the location, followed by layout and amenities. Accessibility is crucial too. The view is a big bonus,”
Abdulla Bin Sulayem, CEO of luxury developer, Seven Tides, agrees but notes that investors are really after the whole package. “The view is a major selling point, but that alone doesn’t necessarily guarantee sales,” says Bin Sulayem. “It’s important to have a range of amenities, excellent service, an impeccable leisure offering, a product that has the potential to offer end users good return on investment or, for investors, rental income.”
Marina Gate 1, Dubai Marina
Floor-to-ceiling glass panels provide uninterrupted views of the waterfront
Located at the northern gateway to one of Dubai’s most enviable developments, The Residences at Marina Gate in Dubai Marina is a triumvirate of residential towers with uninterrupted waterfront vistas. The first tower to be completed, Marina Gate 1, has 399 residential apartments spread across 51 floors. Designed from the inside out, the high-ceiling apartments maximise on interior space, balancing striking, modern vertical lines with inspired interior decoration, and feature spacious balconies and floor-to-ceiling windows with stunning views of the marina waters and city skyline.
Step outside your front door and onto Marina Walk for a morning jog or leisurely evening stroll. The wealth of dining options ranges from casual to five-star restaurants, while a diverse collection of retail and entertainment options round out the inclusive community ambience. Connected via tree-lined communal spaces, the phased release community is 100 per cent leisure oriented with Marina Gate 1 enjoying its own infinity pool, children’s play area, dual-level gym, paddle tennis court, squash court and visitor parking.
The 157 two-bedroom units range in size from 1,274-1,465 sq ft and are designed to deliver an efficient layout softened with a warm colour palette and cleverly concealed downlighting to add mood. Floor-to-ceiling glass panels provide uninterrupted views of the waterfront with glass-balustrade balconies extending the living space and optimising the view beyond. The open-plan kitchen includes branded appliances and imported porcelain tiles, while the bathroom and bedrooms feature walnut veneered doors, built-in sliding door closets and backlit mirrors.
Marina Gate 1’s infinity pool has a view of the marina waters
The two-bedroom apartments start from Dh2.3 million to Dh3.2 million.
Mustafa Pooya, chief commercial officer, Select Group:
“As our flagship project and the first tower to be released out of the three, we have really focused on making sure we attract as many end users and long-term investors as possible, as opposed to chasing investors looking for rental returns.
“We have a diverse buyer base with around 60-70 per cent Western investors with a lot from the UK, and a fair amount from Saudi Arabia and the UAE as well. When we launched in 2014, we achieved close to Dh1.6 billion in sales in just eight months. Obviously, the market has slowed considerably, but having a premium product with a premium outlook enables us to take a long-term view.
“Water-facing views sell extremely well but it’s just as important for us that we deliver a physical product that stands apart from other buildings, so with things like garbage removal we have a separate chute for recyclables, and elevators that are big enough to fit large pieces of furniture. In the apartments, we reduced the number of window mullions so as to ensure an unrestricted open expanse of glass to maximise the view of the water.”
Noora Tower, Habtoor City
Noora Tower’s two-bedroom apartments offer 1,600 sq ft of open-living space
Part of the Al Habtoor City development on the bustling Shaikh Zayed Road, and the first freehold investment opportunity in the area, Noora Tower is one of three high-end residential towers positioned on the banks of the Dubai Water Canal. Elevated living is the Al Habtoor mantra with a collection of one- to four-bedroom apartments, plus lofts and penthouses housed in a striking art deco building topped with a 35,000-sq-ft landscaped leisure deck, the largest in the UAE featuring pools and 360-degree panoramic views of the canal and the city.
A self-contained community, Al Habtoor City already boasts three five-star hotels, with all they have to offer, and the city’s newest Las Vegas-style entertainment experience — La Perle by by Dragone. The residential cluster is also home to the Al Habtoor Tennis Academy, 50,000 sq ft of under-development retail space and doorstep access to the walking, running and cycling promenade along the Dubai Water Canal. The upscale community facilities also include a helicopter pad and landscaped gardens.
Noora Tower’s expansive two-bedroom apartments offer approximately 1,600 sq ft of stylish open-living space and feature a balcony with uninterrupted views of the Dubai Canal and Burj Al Arab. The interiors include a total of three bathrooms, separate store room and laundry room, luxury fixtures and finishing throughout, vitrified flooring and a fully fitted kitchen.
The two-bedroom units start from Dh3.5 million.
Khalaf Ahmad Al Habtoor, founding chairman, Al Habtoor Group:
“It’s important to point out that every resident in Al Habtoor City will have an unparalleled view, wherever they are in the development. The majority of our buyers are end users, as they see it as a good place to live and are buying into the lifestyle. However, we have a good share of investors who see the tremendous capital appreciation.
“We refer to our product as palaces in the sky, and that’s due to the quality of the finishing of the apartments. We applied the same building and finishing standards as to our hotels.
“Al Habtoor City is unmatched and unrivalled in my view. Residents can see all the key landmarks from the comfort of their homes — out to the sea or into the desert.”
Anantara Residences, Palm Jumeirah
Homebuyers can design Anantara’s shell-and-core penthouses, which range in size from 7,468-13,478 sq ft, to their heart’s content
Relaxed resort living and entertainment in an exceptional penthouse environment personally customised to suit your lifestyle defines the ultimate Palm Jumeirah island home at Anantara Residences. A blank canvas investment opportunity out on the Eastern Crescent, the limited edition portfolio of just 14 penthouses features sunken swimming pools, large private outdoor terraces and sparkling views of the Arabian Gulf or coast and Dubai Marina skyline.
This is Palm Jumeirah after all, so the island lifestyle is key and centred on all things relaxation related, with the residences connected to the five-star Anantara The Palm Dubai Resort. Residents have access to the private beach and 10,000 sq m of lagoon-style swimming pools, a fully equipped gym, tennis courts and children’s play areas, as well as the resort’s top-class restaurants and Anantara Spa. A phalanx of other luxury hotels, as well as the retail and dining delights on the trunk of the Palm, are a short drive away.
No cut and paste identikit home, each two-, three- and four-bedroom penthouse starts life as shell and core, allowing investors to design a residence that truly reflects their personality and style. Ranging in size from 7,468-13,478 sq ft, there’s ample room to create a one-off second home or investment property, with the emphasis on outdoor entertaining opportunities, thanks to a private pool and extensive terraces where the views take centre stage.
Anantara residents have access to 10,000 sq m of lagoon-style swimming pools
The four-bedroom penthouse start from Dh19 million.
Abdulla Bin Sulayem, CEO, Seven Tides:
“Dubai is a global gateway with an enviable reputation both from a business and leisure perspective, and with our Anantara product we find that international high-net-worth individuals are attracted by the combination of water-based location appeal and investment potential, which is where Palm Jumeirah especially ticks all the right boxes.
“In addition to the fantastic view and great location, residents also have access to the Anantara The Palm Dubai Resort’s private beach and the 10,000-sq-m temperature-controlled swimming pools and other leisure facilities.
“Dubai is fortunate to have a number of fantastic water-facing locations with amazing views, and a selection of properties and price bands to match, from here on Palm Jumeirah to Dubai Marina, Downtown Dubai and Jumeirah Lakes Towers.”