Over 20 individuals and companies were honoured at the Ritz Carlton DIFC at the inaugural Arabian Business Real Estate Awards.
In welcoming the large attendance on the night, Eddie Taylor, editor of Arabian Business magazine, said real estate remains one of the most important industries in Dubai.
Last year alone, he said 69,000 real estate transactions took place, with a total value of AED285 billion ($77bn) - more than the GDP of 150 countries around the world.
“We're here tonight to celebrate an industry that perhaps more than any other embodies the UAE,” he said.
“It's a sector that made real the vision of Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, whose anniversary we mark this year. The founding father of the United Arab Emirates envisioned a modern, dynamic, open and prosperous nation, based on innovation and opportunity, education and enterprise.
“Under his leadership and that of his successors, it's you the people in this room that has helped make that happen.”
Wasl Properties received the “Pioneers of Real Estate Award”, for its management of over 25,000 residential and commercial properties in Dubai.
The judges commended Wasl for being “an incredible story and an incredible company.”
Dubai Properties won “Outstanding Contribution to Real Estate (Company), while MAG Group founder Moafaq Al Gaddah won the Outstanding Contribution award by an individual.
Gaddah also took the “Innovation Project of the Year” award for MAG Creek Wellbeing Resort, by MAG Lifestyle Development.
Damac’s Hussein Sajwani was voted “Real Estate Legend” while other big winners included Ellington Group for “Innovation Company of the Year”, Azizi for Developer of the Year (UAE) and RAK Properties for Developer of the Year (Northern Emirates).
ARADA was named Master Developer of the Year. Bahrain’s Faisal Faqeeh won Visionary of the Year, and Jewelz by Danube took Best Branded Project.
Hussain Sajwani, who was unable to attend the awards on the night, sent a special video message of thanks.
“Just as important as having a strong work ethic is the belief that you place in other people's abilities and the success they bring, day in and day out,” said Sajwani.
“The people who work with me bring the best of themselves to work, and through this they create the tremendous work environment that is essential for success.
“This award is a recognition for all the employees of Damac who have helped us become one of the most successful, most recognised real estate companies in the world.”
Best REIT in the GCC: Equitativa Group
Software Management Company of the Year: Yardi Systems Ltd
Real Estate Brokerage of the Year: Sotheby’s
Best Architectural Design Company – VX STUDIO
Developer of the Year – Northern Emirates: RAK Properties
Developer of the Year: Azizi Developments
Best Waterfront Project: Sharjah Oasis
Best Industrial Project: Sharjah Asset Management
Innovation Project of the Year: MAG Lifestyle Development
Best Residential Project: Serenia, The Palm
Real Estate Broker of the Year, UAE: Allsopp & Allsopp
Off Plan Project of the Year: Oriental Pearls
Best Branded Project: Jewelz by Danube
Best Design: J One
Fastest Growing Company of the Year: Binghatti
Innovation Company of the Year: Ellington Group
Master Developer of the Year: Arada
Real Estate Legend: Hussain Sajwani
Visionary of the Year: Faisal Faqeeh
Outstanding Contribution: Moafaq Al Gaddah
Outstanding Contribution (Company) – Dubai Properties
Pioneers of Real Estate: Wasl Properties
(Source: Arabianbusiness.com YouTube channel)