Renowned celebrity developer is looking to build 'dream' project in his homeland of Palestine
US President Donald Trump has little knowledge of Palestinian history and takes decisions based on what he is ‘fed,’ according to renowned Palestinian, American celebrity developer and architect Mohamed Hadid.
Speaking to Arabian Business, Hadid commented on Trump’s policy in Palestine, including his 2017 move of the US embassy to Jerusalem in a move that recognised the city as the capital of Israel and struck a blow to Palestinians who consider Jerusalem as their capital. Protests in nearby Gaza saw Israeli forces shoot and kill at least 58 Palestinians and wound 1,200 others.
“I don’t believe [Trump] has great knowledge of the Palestinian history and the tragedy... So he reacts on what he is fed in any recent news, unfortunately,” Hadid said.
The developer’s family had left Palestine during The Nakba, or Catastrophe, the period between the United Nations’ vote on the partition plan and official end of the first Arab-Israeli war. Their home had been taken by a Jewish Polish family, which nine months prior had been given refuge from the Nazis by the Hadids.
When asked why he hadn’t joined the world of politics, or the Palestinian Authority, Hadid jested, “No one invited me,” before adding, “I’m a bad speaker… Too liberal… Now I’m not that young to start in politics…”
His supermodel daughters Gigi and Bella Hadid have also spoken against Trump’s policy in Palestine, with Bella stating in a post to her 24 million followers on social media, “I've been waiting to put this into perfect words but I realized there is no perfect way to speak of something so unjust. A very, very sad day. Watching the news and seeing the pain of the Palestinian people makes me cry for the many, many generations of Palestine.
“Jerusalem is home of all religions. For this to happen, I feel, makes us take five steps back making it harder to live in a world of peace… Where is the hope?”
Hadid is the founder of US-based multi-million dollar firm Hadid Design and Development Group, the force behind projects ranging from the Ritz Carlton Hotels in Washington, New York, Aspen and Houston to massive private estates in Mexico and Beverly Hills.
He is currently considering building a ‘dream’ project in Palestine, and is looking for the right location and local partner.
“It’s my dream to build a project in Palestine. I don’t [know] when or where as of yet, but I’m looking for the right location and a local partner,” he said.
While he declined to divulge further information or details, Hadid stressed that finding “the right people, honest people” is key to executing the project.
The developer is also building the world’s largest residential building set in the heart of Egypt, having joined forces with Cairo-based property developer Memaar Al Morshedy Group to build and design 200,000 square meter ‘Skyline.’
The town-like complex in Maadi, Cairo will house the world’s largest sky garden and infinity pool, and will be built over the span of seven years, with the first phase expected to be completed in two and a half years.
Hadid has also found an opportunity in Casablanca, Morocco, where he’s designing a massive mixed-use project expected to feature 16,000 apartments, 3.5 million square foot of office space and several hotels.
“I can’t give you more details," he said of the project, “but it was done for the locals. High-end but affordable. It’s going to be beautiful.”