Sharjah’s Arada, Emaar ink hotel deal at $6.5bn mega-scheme

Emaar Hospitality Group to manage 600 hotel rooms and additional serviced apartments

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Arada, the Sharjah-based real estate developer, signed a deal with Emaar Hospitality Group, a division of Dubai’s largest listed property company, to open a trio of hotels at the Dh24 billion ($6.5bn) Aljada mega-community due to complete in 2025.

“Aljada is a transformational project for Sharjah, and our partnership agreement with Emaar is further proof of that,” Sheikh Sultan bin Ahmed Al Qasimi, chairman of Arada and a member of Sharjah’s ruling family, said in a statement on Thursday.

The chairman did not disclose the value of the deal. “All three hotels are in the concept stage and it is too early to give an accurate indication of their investment value,” he said.

“That being said, these hotels will significantly raise the profile not only of Aljada, but Sharjah as a whole, providing more choices for consumers and allowing visitors from the UAE and overseas a perfect place to stay within the city.”

Sharjah aims to attract more than 10 million visitors to the emirate by 2021, under a strategy devised by the Sharjah Commerce and Tourism Development Authority.

While prices of residential and commercial properties in the UAE have declined in the past two years due to low oil prices and muted demand, developers have launched several tourism, housing and mixed-use projects in Sharjah in recent months as the emirate seeks to raise its profile and compete with its neighbour Dubai.

In January, plans for three schemes totalling Dh2.7bn were unveiled by the Sharjah Investment and Development Authority (Shurooq) and Abu Dhabi-based real estate developer Eagle Hills, whose chairman is Emaar founder Mohamed Alabbar.

Arada is a joint venture between KBW Investments – a firm controlled by Saudi Arabia’s Prince Khaled bin Alwaleed bin Talal – and Basma Group. It unveiled the 2.2 square kilometre Aljada project last year as Sharjah’s largest-ever scheme to date.

“Arada is redefining the residential and commercial landscape of Sharjah with Aljada, its ambitious master-planned destination that will catalyse all sectors of the economy," said Mr Alabbar.

“Through our partnership, we are bringing three distinctive hotel experiences that will meet the requirements of visitors and residents."

Intended to house 70,000 people, Aljada will be delivered in several phases starting with the release in 2019 of 272 apartments, 28 townhouses and 56 semi-detached villas. There will also be retail, leisure and commercial components.

Under the management deal signed this week, Emaar Hospitality Group will launch three of its brands at Aljada, providing 600 hotel rooms and additional serviced apartments.


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The Address Aljada Sharjah will offer 150 hotel rooms, while The Address Residences Aljada Sharjah will provide 150 serviced apartments located in Aljada’s 1.9 million Central Hub, the heart of the mega-project designed by Zaha Hadid Architects.

The upscale Vida Aljada Sharjah and Vida Residences Aljada Sharjah will provide 175 hotel rooms and 120 serviced residences respectively, while the mid-market Rove Aljada Sharjah will provide 300 hotel rooms.

The serviced apartments will be launched for sale in the fourth quarter of 2018, the companies said.

“Hospitality is one of the core aspects of the mega-development,” Sheikh AL Qasimi said.

“With the growth in tourist arrivals to Sharjah, and the emirate’s status as a cultural hub, there is strong potential for building a robust hospitality infrastructure.”