Malls in Dubai

Old Feb 27th 2011, 6:35 am
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Default Malls in Dubai

Twas at a barbecue birthday party over the weekend. The birthday boy is a director in the company so most of the guests were around 40ish.

Interesting experience - the men sat off to the side and whinged about gardeners and their dewa bills, whilst the women were on the other side whinging about their maids and school fees.

But there was loads of free booze and a free catered meal, so good times in all.

I did pick up a few nuggets about the retail scene in Dubai from a rugby-mad dude who works for the Al Thayer group (owns about 90 stores at the Dubai Mall).

In short, if you're interested:

Mall of Emirates is the most succesful resident oriented mall. This is the mall where everyone in New Dubai and Jumeira goes to for basic shopping and entertainment. Rents are high but tenants can pay.

Dubai Mall thrives as a tourist destination. Residents tend to go there only for dining and for one or two stores but ignore the rest of the place. Rents are high and are still kept high for existing tenants but the mall keeps vacancies brief by attracting new tenants at lower rents, causing friction with existing tenants.

Festival City is struggling. Badly. If Ikea wasn't there it'd be a ghost town. Situated between the Dubai Mall and Mirdiff City Centre, Festival City is doomed in the long run.

Wafi is doing ok because it caters to very rich Arabs.

BurJuman was doing well because there was a comfortably prosperous population in Bur Dubai, but the mall's seeing some of those people move out to New Dubai and is concerned for its future as the retail base is the area's residents. New Dubai residents don't go to BurJuman. At all.
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Old Feb 27th 2011, 6:39 am
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Default Re: Malls in Dubai

Interesting information, I used to work at Wafi so I have always had a vested interest in Malls in general. Interesting the FC is struggling, it was their opening that was the start of the things going downhill for Wafi. I was at Wafi on Sat, ghost town. Comes alive at night though. Mirdiff CC is a great mall, in my opinion the best laid out one of the rest with a good variety of stores. Hate MOE but as you say it is handy, for me less than a 10 min drive but I try to avoid it, BUT it has Virgin and Dubai Mall doesn't.
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Old Feb 27th 2011, 6:46 am
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Default Re: Malls in Dubai

According to the rugby dude, when I said 'who goes to Wafi? I don't know anyone who goes there,' his reply was: 'You don't go to Wafi. Wafi comes to you.' So I think whilst mostly empty a number of stores have a roaring trade with very rich Emirati women - the stores will take a whole van of stock and do private viewings inside someone's house.

Festival City was badly designed from the beginning. The idea of a waterfront mall is a brilliant concept and successful elsewhere but they failed to use the waterfront setting by moving the main mall back from the creek and separating it from water views by an artificial canal and that half empty restaurant pavilion.

And it's took dark inside. The circulation isn't great and the side corridors with all the empty store spaces are depressing vacuums.

I have to say that although I only ever buy from the bookstore at the Dubai Mall, the hustle and bustle of the touristy side of the place is attractive enough in its own right.

Originally Posted by Blue Cat View Post
Interesting information, I used to work at Wafi so I have always had a vested interest in Malls in general. Interesting the FC is struggling, it was their opening that was the start of the things going downhill for Wafi. I was at Wafi on Sat, ghost town. Comes alive at night though. Mirdiff CC is a great mall, in my opinion the best laid out one of the rest with a good variety of stores. Hate MOE but as you say it is handy, for me less than a 10 min drive but I try to avoid it, BUT it has Virgin and Dubai Mall doesn't.
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Old Feb 27th 2011, 6:53 am
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Default Re: Malls in Dubai

Originally Posted by Ethos83 View Post
According to the rugby dude, when I said 'who goes to Wafi? I don't know anyone who goes there,' his reply was: 'You don't go to Wafi. Wafi comes to you.' So I think whilst mostly empty a number of stores have a roaring trade with very rich Emirati women - the stores will take a whole van of stock and do private viewings inside someone's house.

Festival City was badly designed from the beginning. The idea of a waterfront mall is a brilliant concept and successful elsewhere but they failed to use the waterfront setting by moving the main mall back from the creek and separating it from water views by an artificial canal and that half empty restaurant pavilion.

And it's took dark inside. The circulation isn't great and the side corridors with all the empty store spaces are depressing vacuums.

I have to say that although I only ever buy from the bookstore at the Dubai Mall, the hustle and bustle of the touristy side of the place is attractive enough in its own right.
IBN Battuta is a nice bright Mall and handy for us at this end of town. I hardly ever go to FC I have to say, not worth the drive.
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Old Feb 27th 2011, 10:59 am
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Default Re: Malls in Dubai

Originally Posted by Blue Cat View Post
IBN Battuta is a nice bright Mall and handy for us at this end of town. I hardly ever go to FC I have to say, not worth the drive.
yup, hardly rocket science really.

Dubai Mall is simply too big - I don't find a "shopping experience" fun when I have to walk miles and miles to get to each shop I want to, plus, I simply can't navigate it. Plus, however many or few shops we intend to visit, we never seem to be able to escape in less than 5 hours. That's like Ikea - Hell of Earth.
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Old Feb 27th 2011, 11:27 am
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Default Re: Malls in Dubai

Do you mean Al Tayer Group? My boss is chummy with one of their top financial guys.
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Old Feb 27th 2011, 11:30 am
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hmmmm...nice
 
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Default Re: Malls in Dubai

Originally Posted by lionheart View Post
Do you mean Al Tayer Group? My boss is chummy with one of their top financial guys.
lol...cool
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