By Andy Sambidge
UK department giant will be anchor store at Emporium fashion mall in UAE capital.
Aldar Properties and Retail Arabia International announced on Monday they had signed a 10-year lease agreement that will see the development of the region’s first House of Fraser store at Central Market in Abu Dhabi.
House of Fraser will be the anchor store for Emporium, a fashion retail centre that will feature 150 chic boutiques as well as food and beverage outlets over eight floors, the companies said in a joint statement.
In addition to Emporium, Central Market will be home to a traditional Arabian Souk featuring three ultra-modern towers providing apartments, office space, and hotel accommodation.
Nabil Daud, managing director and CEO, Retail Arabia International, said: “The signing of House of Fraser for the Middle East marked a very important step for Retail Arabia International.
"It is with great excitement that we look to launching this iconic brand in Abu Dhabi as the anchor to the Emporium, Central Market."
"We believe that this mall will become a major shopping destination in Abu Dhabi," he added without giving details of when the mall would open.
Fred Douglas, director of leasing, Aldar Properties, added: “We are delighted to welcome House of Fraser to Emporium at Central Market, our high fashion destination. Aldar is committed to bringing world class retailers and unique concepts to our developments, and is looking to form strategic relationships with groups such as Retail Arabia International to achieve this.”
Last month, House of Fraser signed a franchise agreement with the aim of expanding into the Middle East market.
As well as Abu Dhabi, the agreement could see House of Fraser open stores in Cairo, Riyadh, Jeddah, Dhahran, Muscat and Doha.
John Lewis would make a perfect addition to the UAE retail line up - its never knowingly undersold, and in this market, that would be a premium USP. However UK brands don't always translate - look at Boots - its not a patch on the UK stores - the brands they carry here are the same as the other pharmacies and we get non of the unique non medicinal stuff. Good luck to HoF
for the Central Market Project..a great signing and many congrats to the Aldar Project Team. Cant wait to see this scheme open its door