Nakheel, Centara to develop Deira Islands waterpark resort

Nakheel and Centara's new 300,000 square-foot resort is expected to open in 2020 with 600 guestrooms.

UAE-based developer Nakheel will partner with Thai hotel group Centara Hotels and Resorts to develop 600-guestroom beachfront resort and waterpark at Dubai’s Deira Islands. 
The joint venture will construct a family-centric lifestyle destination at Deira Islands, Nakheel’s new 5.9 square-mile waterfront city. Centara, whose portfolio has over 14,000 guestrooms across 67 hotels and resorts in Asia, Indian Ocean and the Middle East, will manage the resort. Set to open in 2020, the resort is the first Centara establishment in the UAE and will cover an area of almost 300,000 square feet. Recent enhancements to the hotel’s design have added 50 guestrooms to the original plan, bringing the total number of guestrooms to 600.

Centara Hotels & Resorts is part of Central Group, one of Thailand’s family-owned conglomerate holding companies, with interests in the merchandising, real estate, retailing, hospitality and restaurant sectors. Centara made its official entry into the Middle East market with the opening of Centara Muscat Hotel earlier this year. While the group has imminent openings in other Gulf States, Centara Deira Islands Beach Resort Dubai will be its first destination in the UAE.

Nakheel’s partnership with Centara is the developer’s second international joint venture at Deira Islands. Work on the first, an 800-guestroom, $182.4 million beachfront resort with Spain’s Riu Hotels & Resorts, is already underway with construction proposals currently being assessed. More partnerships with global hospitality firms are being considered. The developer’s approximately $1.4 billion hospitality expansion will see the development of 17 hotels, resorts and serviced apartment complexes with almost 6,000 guestrooms and hotel apartments between them across Dubai. The first two hotels at Dragon Mart and Ibn Battuta Mall opened last year while the rest are under construction or development. Nakheel has maintained a focus to develop "new hospitality concepts to Dubai in line with the government's tourism vision," Ali Rashid Lootah, chairman at Nakheel, explained in a statement.

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Deira Islands, where Nakheel has already invested over $2.04 billion in infrastructure and construction contracts, will add about 25 miles to Dubai's coastline, which will include about 13 miles of beach. The coastal city, which is expected to have a population of 250,000, will have hundreds of hotels, residences and retail and leisure attractions, including a range of projects by Nakheel itself. Among them is Deira Central, the nine-million square-foot center of the islands with 50 mixed-use towers, Deira Mall and two mosques in extensive parkland where Nakheel is also building Deira Islands Night Souk and more hotels and resorts on the islands.