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World` s largest man made islands to be created in Dubai

His Highness General Sheikh Mohammed din Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai, UAE Minister of Defence & Chairman of the Dubai Department of Tourism & Commerce Marketing, (DTCM), unveiled Dubai` s new crown jewels,…

His Highness General Sheikh Mohammed din Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai, UAE Minister of Defence & Chairman of the Dubai Department of Tourism & Commerce Marketing, (DTCM), unveiled Dubai` s new crown jewels, the Palm<.> Islands development, following the inauguration of the Arabian Travel Market (ATM).

The project is the largest of its kind anywhere in the world and along with the port of Jebel Ali & the Great Wall of China, will be a landmark visible to the naked eye as far away as the Moon.

One Island will be created near to the Royal Mirage Hotel and a second identical Island to the south west of Jebel Ali Hotel. When completed, the islands will add 120 km of sandy beaches to the Dubai coastline.

The unveiling ceremony of the Palm Islands` model was held at the ATM, adjacent to DTCM`s stand and was attended by senior dignitaries including Mr Sultan bin Sulayem, Chairman of Dubai Palm Developers, Chairman of Jebel Ali Free Zone & Managing Director of Dubai Ports Authority, and the DTCM Director General, Khalid A. bin Sulayem.

Announcing details to the media, Mr Sultan bin Sulayem said `the first Palm Islands` development will include 2,000 residential Villas, up to 40 luxury boutique hotels, shopping complexes, cinemas and the region`s first marine park. Details on the second island will be announced shortly, but will follow a similar pattern`.

He noted that both islands will be created in the shape of Palm Trees and consist of 17 fronds surrounded by protective barrier reefs. The islands will extend approximately 5km offshore & are 5km in diametre.

`The expansion of tourism infrastructure has played a vital role in the development of Dubai` s economy and this pioneering concept from HH Sheikh Mohammed will benefit the Emirate`s tourism industry enormously, elevating us from regional players to leaders in tourism development who focus on modernising and expanding tourism infrastructure to attract more tourists`, said Mr Khaled bin Sulayem.

Phase One of the project focuses on the physical creation of the first island & will take two years to complete. Each island will be built using a total of 80 million cubic metres of sand & rock from dredging the sea bed and mining quarries in the UAE.

The following phases include the installation of the infrastructure services and then the construction of all the buildings. In all, both islands are planned to take between 3-4 years to complete.

The project is managed by Dubai Palm Developers who are also responsible for designing & marketing up to 2,000 villas on each island along with nearly 12 km of Reef for development by hotels.

Each of the 17 Palm Island fronds will feature an individual, distinctive architectural style. Many of the villas will enjoy private beaches or yacht mooring facilities.

Prospective buyers can either choose a villa design from one of these or simply buy a plot of land and create their own. A selection of 25 show homes are being constructed near to Emirates Hills, close to Jebel Ali, for buyers to view.

Property will be for sale to Emiratis and GCC nationals and foreigners on a similar basis to the Dubai Marina Development.

The islands are to be connected to the main land by 300m bridges from which visitors by car are guided into large underground car parks. Residents and guests of the Islands` hotels will be directed to separate, private facilities.

The trunk of Palm Island 1 includes the Middle East`s first ever Marine Park where visitors can enjoy performances by dolphins and whales. Other attractions include luxury multiplexes, health spas and hotels. A number of condominiums will be built on the north side of the trunk, for residences or holiday homes. Similar facilities are planned for the second island.

Each island will have two marinas each providing berths for 150 yachts & up 50 mega-yachts. The marinas serve as a home port for regular ferry services to shuttle guests to the Reef`s boutique hotels-40 are planned on each island.

The 150m wide Reefs will form protective crescents surrounding the Palm Island fronds. Only low level, one or two storey buildings will be permitted, soon to the shaded by Palms, flora & fauna. The Reef`s eco system will evolve to provide sanctuary for sea & bird life.

Commenting on the project, Mr Sultan Bin Sulayem, said the project has taken 4 years of methodical planning exhaustive feasibility studies to ensure that the islands can be built without disrupting the environment. It will employ the most up to date, best practice in engineering and construction

The Islands are yet another icon of Dubai`s great vision of the future and will serve as an example of the Emirates commitment to a diversifying economy and broadening property ownership within the community Mr Sultan concluded.

Theodore Koumelis
Co-Founder & Managing Director - Travel Media Applications | Website

Theodore is the Co-Founder and Managing Editor of TravelDailyNews Media Network; his responsibilities include business development and planning for TravelDailyNews long-term opportunities.