With its many audacious projects, Nakheel has achieved more than most firms achieve in a lifetime.
It is just over six years ago since the first grain of sands were laid on The Palm Jumeirah, yet already Nakheel has achieved more than many companies achieve in a lifetime. The end of 2006 saw the first residents move onto Nakheel's signature project, and 2007 will see the handover of the first phase of The Palm Jumeirah's 4000 apartments and villas.
Yet it is not just The Palm Jumeirah that is turning an extraordinary vision into reality. Nakheel has completed a number of developments including the world's largest themed mall, Ibn Battuta Mall; the world's largest inland man-made island residential community, Jumeirah Islands; and one of Dubai's most popular residential communities, The Gardens.
This year’s Cityscape is the perfect platform for showing the world how Nakheel is building the vision of Dubai” Manal Shaheen, Nakheel Director, Sales, Marketing & Customer Service.
With a portfolio of projects ranging across 2 billion sq ft of land worth more than US$30bn, Nakheel is changing the map of Dubai and is playing a key role in shaping the city's future with a portfolio of landmark developments.
As symbols of Dubai's transformation, Nakheel projects such as The Palm and The World have already become iconic landmarks of the 21st century. At this year's Cityscape, Nakheel will show how it is changing the way the world looks at Dubai, showing how human innovation can push back the boundaries of possibility.
Manal Shaheen, Director, Sales, Marketing & Customer Service comments: "Nakheel is one of the world's largest and most innovative real estate developers. It is a major player in the transformation of Dubai and the creator of some of the world's most iconic developments. This Cityscape, Nakheel will be showcasing how it is changing the map of Dubai.
"We have already achieved more than many companies achieve in a lifetime: the first residents have moved onto The Palm Jumeirah and The World is more than 90% reclaimed. However, there are many milestones ahead, and the numbers are pretty outstanding: 1000km of new waterfront; building homes for more than 3 million people; increasing the number of hotels in Dubai by more than 50%. This year's Cityscape is the perfect platform for showing the world how Nakheel is building the vision of Dubai."
The numbers are pretty astonishing. The Palm Jumeirah will be home to more than 30 hotels along its 70km of beachfront, thus increasing the number of beachfront hotels in Dubai by almost 150%.
One of the first of the hotels to open, in November 2008, will be Atlantis, The Palm; the centrepiece hotel of The Crescent is a 1500 room hotel and resort, featuring more than 65,000 marine creatures and 2km of interconnected rides at what will be the region's largest water park.
Anticipation is already building, with the hotel receiving interest in bookings as far in advance as 2012. Shaheen is excited by the prospect, saying, "The opening of Atlantis will be a huge moment; marking the transformation of The Palm Jumeirah from a residential community into a tourist destination." Many more hotels on the island are scheduled to open from 2009, and all should be completed by 2012, including The Palm Jumeirah's centerpiece hotel, Trump International Hotel & Tower, a 61 storey mixed-use hotel and residential building. Donald Trump has heralded the site as the best location in Dubai, saying, ‘When I look at potential sites for real estate investment, I concentrate on "location, location, location" - and this is the best location not only in Dubai but the whole of the Middle East."
This is the best location not only in Dubai but the whole of the Middle East” Donald Trump, Chairman & President, the Trump Organization.
In a city of hundreds of skyscrapers, the eye-catching design of Trump International Hotel & Tower will be The Trump Organisation's fi rst development in the Middle East. Trump and Atlantis are not the only big-name hotels on The Palm Jumeirah, with others including Hilton, Fairmont, Movenpick, Kempinski and W Hotels.
Of course, people won't necessarily have to be on land to stay at The Palm Jumeirah, as one of the world's most famous cruiseliners, the QE2, is set to fi nd a permanent home there from 2009. Sultan Ahmed bin Sulayem, Nakheel's Executive Chairman sees the QE2 as another important piece of the tourism jigsaw. "QE2 at The Palm Jumeirah will become one of the must-see experiences in Dubai and in the Middle East. We are investing to create a truly global tourism destination." Bin Sulayem is keen to ensure that the integrity of the iconic ocean liner is preserved: "Dubai is a maritime nation and we understand the rich heritage of QE2. She is coming to a home where she will be cherished."
Another world-renowned tourism attraction due to take up residence at The Palm Jumeirah will be the spectacular Cirque du Soleil. Nakheel and Cirque du Soleil will jointly design and build a 1800-seat theatre on The Palm Jumeirah that will be home to the first-ever Cirque resident show to be staged outside of the USA and Japan. The new show will be exclusive and original to The Palm Jumeirah and is expected to open during the last quarter of 2010.
Daniel Lamarre, President and CEO, Cirque du Soleil, says that The Palm Jumeirah is ideally suited to hosting the world's most famous circus: "Cirque is always looking for new markets for permanent shows, but it's not easy to find the perfect combination of visitor traffic, hotel accommodation, transportation links, modern facilities and area attractions.
"We are very confi dent that The Palm Jumeirah offers Cirque all of the components we need."