Abu Dhabi’s infrastructure development continues to change the sky line, whilst opening up a world of opportunities for various business sectors. One of the big winners from this development and careful marketing is tourism, which according to one report in 2016, is set for a boom period of growth.
In June of 2016, a report released by property consultant Knight Frank, suggested that stronger product offerings and continued investment in Abu Dhabi’s leisure and hospitality infrastructure were the foundations for a major boost in tourism revenues.
And heading up this wealth of opportunity is the Tourism Development & Investment Company (TDIC), renowned as the master developer of major tourism cultural and residential destinations in Abu Dhabi.
TDIC was created to be the dedicated tourism asset management and development arm of the Abu Dhabi Tourism and Culture Authority (TCA Abu Dhabi), in order to drive the investment, growth and development of the Emirate’s tourism sector. Since 2006, we have been actively involved in many of the Emirate’s most prestigious and high profile projects.
“Today, much of our success can be attributed to our ability to respond to the needs of the modern global economy, while dealing with the complex mechanisms of finance and economics and recognising that design and investment are fundamentally connected. Through investment partnerships and joint ventures, TDIC has played an important role in Abu Dhabi’s continual evolution as a world-class destination for tourists, businesses and residents alike,” describes the corporate website.
“Our impressive portfolio of projects embraces all aspects of Abu Dhabi’s heritage and culture, while preserving the country’s natural beauty and enriching people’s lives. Our unrivalled reputation in the industry has been built around our transparency, proven abilities and compelling value proposition. By working closely with both public and private sectors, sustainability is built into every project in order to help facilitate the future economic diversification of Abu Dhabi.
“By working closely with stakeholders and partners across both public and private sectors, together we are developing sustainable projects that are driving the economic diversification of the Emirate of Abu Dhabi. We always deliver our projects to the very highest standard in all the sectors in which we operate, while supporting the country’s economic, cultural and environmental values,” the site continues.
Last September TDIC opened its brand new Lagoons Sales Centre, located at the Saadiyat Lagoons District construction site.
“The Sales Centre’s convenient location next to New York University Abu Dhabi offers potential buyers and investors the opportunity to discover the dynamic new community, its surroundings, and the numerous facilities in close proximity to their new home,” the company stated in a press release.
“The district’s first phase, scheduled for completion in the second quarter of 2019, will include two, three and four-bedroom townhouses.
“Commenting on this announcement, Mr Sufian Hasan Al Marzooqi, Chief Executive Officer of TDIC, said: “By establishing a purpose-built on-site sales centre, we are facilitating the public’s access to vital information about the Saadiyat Lagoons District. Located less than five minutes from the Sheikh Khalifa bridge, the new centre will provide interested buyers with a better feel for the community that they could potentially call home one day.”
“The Saadiyat Lagoons District is a meticulously planned community and the largest district of Saadiyat. It has been designed as an interconnected neighbourhood, which facilitates access to a wide range of amenities, lush open spaces and a diverse and vibrant locale to create a rich living experience.
“Located within minutes from Abu Dhabi city, Saadiyat Lagoons will feature contemporary townhouses, villas and apartments that offer access to shops, dining outlets, gardens and parks, a central lagoon and linear park, mosques and leisure facilities including an equestrian centre. In addition to, the development is set to offer families a nature-based and healthy lifestyle with numerous pathways for running, cycling and horseback riding on trails alongside the mangroves area, together with a lively town centre.
“The district’s town centre overlooks the central Plaza, and will boast a Waterfront Village – all of which are easily accessible via the district’s various walking paths. Saadiyat Island is home to some of the world’s biggest names in culture and education such as Zayed National Museum, Louvre Abu Dhabi, Guggenheim Abu Dhabi, NYU Abu Dhabi and Cranleigh Abu Dhabi.”
Of course such ambitious ventures boost the local economy significantly, whilst attracting tourism to the region.
“We see our strength in our ability to identify real estate and development opportunities that support sustainable tourism. We work towards developing partnerships and relationships that create solid foundations for the future of the Emirate, as well as provide investment opportunities for private and public sector companies. We are also involved in creating destinations that will ensure a long-term future for Abu Dhabi tourism, supporting the implementation of the Economic Vision of Abu Dhabi 2030,” the company affirms online.
In June of last year, TDIC unveiled an architectural master piece as the process of removing the temporary sea protection walls, used during the main construction phase, and the integration of the sea with the Louvre Abu Dhabi museum project, got underway.
“This significant milestone is a key step towards realising the vision for this world-class cultural institution, by its famous architect Jean Nouvel, as a ‘museum city’ on the sea.
“The process is taking place in three stages within the temporary earth platform, an area of reclaimed land sitting four meters above sea level, from which all the construction work to date has been built,” the company announced in a press release.
His Excellency Ali Majed Al Mansoori, Chairman of the Board at TDIC, said: “This is a great milestone in the development of Louvre Abu Dhabi. This delicate process is the result of months of planning and preparation to ensure that the inflow of sea water takes place in a controlled manner around and within strategic places in the museum. We are confident that once it is concluded future visitors to Saadiyat Island will be able to see the beauty of Louvre Abu Dhabi and experience first-hand how the vision for this project has been turned into reality.”
TDIC’s endeavours will surely only further consolidate the healthy tourism growth already underway in Abu Dhabi.
According to the Knight Frank figures, in the first quarter of 2016, Abu Dhabi’s hotels saw guest numbers increase by 11 per cent year-on-year to 1.1 million and guest nights rise by 10 per cent to 3.1 million.
And Abu Dhabi and TDIC are far from done with the development of new attractions. One of the big projects underway is the creation of a $1 billion Warner Bros. theme park at Yas Island, scheduled to open in 2018. Other high-profile developments, such the $650 million Louvre Abu Dhabi on Saadiyat Island, which is slated to open in the second half of this year, will also play a part in boosting the emirate’s visitor numbers.
Sultan bin Saeed Al Mansouri, the minister of economy, highlighted the role a national strategy could play in positioning the UAE as a leading tourist destination.
“Tourism is one of the key sources of national income and its role, place and contribution to GDP should be doubled in the future in light of the leadership’s vision to further develop, as the UAE has a huge potential in the form of state-of-the-art infrastructure, magnificent diverse natural resources, grand tourism and hotel facilities and internationally recognised historic and archaeological landmarks,” he commented.
Under TDIC’s operations, Abi Dhabi is already starting to feel the financial benefits of such strategy.