There is no doubt that the UAE is home to some spectacular properties. From penthouse apartments to plush villas with sprawling gardens and incredible pools, it’s a real estate haven.
Each week, The National showcases some of the finest homes on offer in its Property of the Week. Here, we take a closer look at a Bentley Palace villa on Dubai's World Islands.
The key details
This seven-bedroom mansion is part of The Heart of Europe development at The World Islands off the coast of Dubai. It is one of nine villas on the Sweden Island, of which eight are sold. The villa comes with eight bathrooms, has a built up area of 25,000 square feet and sits on a plot of 34,500 square feet. It is being marketed by Luxhabitat Sotheby's International Realty at Dh125 million ($34m).
What's the story?
There's luxury homes, and there's Bentley Palace.
Aside from Abu Dhabi's Nurai Island, this is probably as close as you are going to get to living on a tropical island in the UAE.
And it's difficult to decide which feature of this property is most attractive. There's the privacy for a start – being five kilometres off the Dubai coast and having neighbours made up of regional royalty.
Then there's the private beach and outdoor space. You can fly in all your friends and family via helicopter (or boat) and utilise the vast rooftop terrace until the sun comes back up, or simply revel in the peace and quiet of living at sea. If you need a break from the water and sand, there is a private tropical forest consisting of 80 species of trees and thousands of plants.
As for the property's interior, it comes with Bentley-branded furniture, Scandinavian timber flooring, two kitchens, a master bedroom suite with his and hers changing rooms and stunning bathrooms.
Why buy a penthouse apartment or a spacious community villa when you can live on an island with an almost endless list of benefits?
What the broker says ...
Does anyone reside full-time at the Sweden Island?
Not yet, the handover certificate will be issued in December. The main reason for it is that the developer wants to assure a perfect experience for the residents in terms of transportation to and from the island, as well as access to amenities by the Monaco hotel which is opening next door by the end of this year.
The neighbours have to approve the new owner … What do you need to pass the test?
Yes correct, the main reason being that the neighbours are all VVIP (including royalty). The rule was put in place that the new buyer must be vetted by the authorities at first, and then be approved by all the neighbours at Sweden Island in order to be allowed to purchase, much like a housing co-op seen in major cities worldwide. Even though Sweden Island is a private island, it is still part of The Heart of Europe holiday destination, so Sweden residents have full access to all the other islands and its hotels, but nobody except the Sweden residents have access to Sweden Islands.
How is The Heart of Europe progressing?
It is in full swing and nearing completion. The developer made sure to utilise the time during the pandemic to push forward the construction progress. The first hotels are ready and will open during Expo 2020 Dubai. Germany Island, Sweden Island and the Honeymoon Island along with a set of Floating Seahorses will be handed over by the end of 2021. If one would visit the islands today, they would not believe their eyes.
Is the Bentley Palace different to the other villas?
Yes indeed, Villa 1 is on a corner plot which is a far larger plot than the others, and it is facing west, enjoying a stunning sunset view. At the entertainment hall, which features a full glass roof, you have a 300º view across all of the islands and all the most famous buildings in Dubai, such as Burj Al Arab, Burj Khalifa and Atlantis, The Palm, to name a few.
How convenient is it living on the islands with necessities such as food etc?
The hotels at The Heart of Europe will offer a la carte services to all the residents at Sweden Island, including 24-hour room service. Groceries are located within the hotels that are easily accessible by the residents as well. A butler service is available as well to handle basically all the needs of the residents. Imagine living in your private beach palace, but with five-star hotel service at your fingertips.
Is this Dubai’s most extraordinary property?
Owning a palace on an island, with a la carte services by five-star hotels, your private beach, and a tropical forest surrounding it, it is like a dream come true for someone who can afford it. Extraordinary is just an understatement.
- Stephan Hirzel, Senior Global Property Consultant at Luxhabitat Sotheby's International Realty