By Lynne Nolan
Emaar Malls Group finalises the opening date of its flagship development as October 30, 2008.
Emaar Malls Group has pushed back the opening date of The Dubai Mall, coinciding with an extended retail season in the region marked by the UAE National Day, Eid Al Adha, New Year and the Dubai Shopping Festival.
“The development of global landmark projects like The Dubai Mall is a complex process that involves co-ordination with project managers, retail tenants and government authorities. By opening on October 30, we are not only offering customers the option of several added attractions but also better public amenities such as more parking for cars and smoother access,” Mohamed Ali Alabbar, chairman, Emaar Properties.
“On October 30, all public areas of The Dubai Mall will be open to customers at the same time, creating a retail event unlike anything ever seen in the region. The Dubai Aquarium & Discovery Centre, the Olympic-sized Dubai Ice Rink, the world’s largest indoor Gold Souk and hundreds of retailers will open simultaneously giving visitors several retail and leisure options.”
Alabbar pointed out that infrastructure support will be imperative for customer inflow from specialty malls.
“The Dubai Mall is expecting some 30 million customers in the very first year of trade, and to support this, it is important to have a smooth traffic and public service infrastructure. The Dubai Mall will have over 14,000 car park spaces and a dedicated bridge from Sheikh Zayed Road for direct access to the mall. The Dubai Metro is also fast progressing and will soon add to the ease of access to the mall, while other access roads are being readied to accommodate the expected record numbers.”
With a total internal floor area of 5.9ft², The Dubai Mall will have 3.77 million ft² of gross leasable space with more than 1200 retail outlets, two anchor department stores and more than 120 food and beverage outlets, adjoined with The Address, a five-star hotel with 250 rooms and 450 serviced apartments.
“The Dubai Mall is already in global spotlight and it is important that it opens with maximum shopping and leisure attractions. At the same time, it is also crucial to have a strong supporting infrastructure, which will make access in and out of the mall a smooth and stress-free experience. The October opening has been planned to coincide with a key retail period that immediately follows, and thus will give our retailers a period abuzz with retail activity,” commented Jim Badour, Chief Executive Officer, Emaar Malls Group.
Yousif Al Ali, general manager of The Dubai Mall said that, “as one of the world’s largest shopping and entertainment destinations, there are several retail and leisure attractions that are currently being finalised in time for the opening.”
This will be more beneficial for retailers as it will allow for more time for fit-out, staff training and streamlining the operational aspects, he stressed.
“The new opening date will give our valued retailers more time and opportunity to be part of the launch of The Dubai Mall, from day one.”For all the latest travel news from the UAE and Gulf countries, follow us on Twitter and Linkedin, like us on Facebook and subscribe to our YouTube page, which is updated daily.