Nakheel has banned every single resident living in Palm Jumeirah’s Building 18 (Jash Hamad) from using its beaches and gyms - despite most having paid their service charges in full.
The move comes after a dispute with Vakson Real Estate, which bought the building from Nakheel, and bills owners directly for service fees, through Open Eye Community Owners Association Management Services.
Last April all owners were told to pay AED12.5 ($3.4) per square foot in service fees for the year ahead, with cheques made out directly to Open Eye. Unlike other properties on the Shoreline, the developer Vakson pays Nakheel each year a portion of the monies raised to guarantee residents access to the beach and gyms.
Arabian Business understands that on January 26, Nakheel asked Vakson to make its contribution towards the service charges, totaling AED520,000, in one single payment, as opposed or previous years when it paid in four cheques. Vakson has declined and is believed to be negotiating a new payment structure with the government master developer. However, Nakheel has indefinitely banned all residents from using the beaches or gyms until the dispute is resolved.
“The crazy thing is most of us living here have paid our service charges in full, right up to May this year. We have every right to use the beaches and gyms but are being blocked. We are caught in the middle, it’s ridiculous,” one resident said.
Nakheel first started banning residents from using its beaches in December 2011, in a long-running dispute over service fees. UAE business legend Khalaf Al Habtoor told Arabian Bhsiness the move by Nakheel was “unacceptable”.
He said: “It was 100 percent [damaging] and unacceptable. If I am buying a house and using the beach and later told I have to pay for the beach, this is abnormal. This is damaging the reputation of my country,” he said.
“I am 100 percent sure that the higher authorities were not aware of such a thing because they would not have accepted it…. They would never have [agreed to] it but some people try to show they are making money for the government – they are damaging its reputation two million times [over] for a few dirhams.”
* Nakheel no longer responds to media enquiries from Arabian Business, nor does it grant Arabian Business access to any of its media events or announcements.