Published On: Thu, Nov 5th, 2015

The rise of DAMAC

Having recently announced at this year’s Arabian Travel Market the opening of DAMAC’s Naia Breeze, a 342-key luxury project in the heart of the Burj area, Sophia Soltani sits down with Niall McLoughlin, senior vice president, DAMAC Properties to find out more about the Dubai based firm’s aggressive pipeline plans

Niall McLoughlin, senior vice president, DAMAC Properties

Niall McLoughlin, senior vice president, DAMAC Properties

Whilst driving through Downtown and Business Bay, it is hard to ignore the large DAMAC signs at every corner and this is no surprise considering that DAMAC Properties have just celebrated a significant milestone, having opened five hotels in just 15 months, an astonishing number of newly opened properties in such a short amount of time.

With no signs of slowing down comes the recent announcement of plans to open NAIA Celestia at the end of 2017 and two more hotels just becoming operational at the end of March.

Niall McLoughlin, senior vice president for the DAMAC wastes no time in defining the DNA of the brand and discussing the aggressive expansion plans for the hospitality division, “DAMAC properties have been around for 14 years, and in 2008 to 2010, we had a number of buildings that were set aside for commercial purposes but we learnt very quickly that we needed to adapt our commercial offices and amend our business strategy determining that the hospitality industry in Dubai, even through the recession was bullish with 100 million people coming through the UAE airports and 5 million people coming to Dubai. So we knew we had to modify these commercial buildings into becoming serviced hotels and so we created DAMAC Hotels and Resorts in late 2012 and we have no plans of slowing down with 1,460 units opened and a further 10,000 rooms in the pipeline.”

Discussing the recent announcement of DAMAC’s latest venture, NAIA Tenora, McLoughlin explains, “NAIA Tenora is a 10-storey, 270 unit luxury hotel apartment project with a swimming pool, gymnasium, designer boutiques and coffee shops which will open in time to serve the predicted 277,000 employees working at the airport and preparing for the World Expo.”


“The Dubai World Central district is set to be one of the most impressive construction projects in the world over the next five years and the news that the Metro line will now run right outside the project significantly improves the connectivity to the area, NAIA Tenora offers a luxury lifestyle experience on the doorstep of the world’s biggest airport hub and moments from the new World Expo 2020 exhibition site. Combining luxury and location, we believe NAIA Tenora is the ideal investment property with strong potential for impressive rental returns to provide ideal accommodation for those working on the project.”


:  Canal Views in the Burj Area of Dubai

Canal Views in the Burj Area of Dubai

Discussing the distinctive DNA of NAIA, McLoughlin continues by stating, “overall NAIA has a different demographic with a more fun, youthful feel and so we focus it around the motto ‘the city is yours’ we want people to come and stay, have a great experience but also be able to get out and about to explore the area with solid advice and so that ties in with our staff as we train them to be experts in their field and area, so if you ask the concierge team how far is Dubai Mall, they are going to know the quickest way for you to get there, how to get there and what is nearby.”


“We focus heavily on expertise here in our DAMAC hotels and that stands for our rooms, to the layout to the F&B outlets at each hotel, we have Essor which offers traditional Khaleeji food, and NAIA is based around an artisan concept café, we had a launch where local artists came in offering something different to our guests.”


NAIA Breeze, located in Business Bay has 339 serviced apartment units, a café, outdoor swimming pool, separate male and female spa facilities and now that DAMAC Hotels & Resorts has a firm collection of serviced apartment properties, it is looking to operate fully-fledged hotels, with the first to be under the Naia Hotels & Resorts brand which is set to be located at Damac’s Akoya Oxygen development, and will have an adjacent serviced apartment building with the whole project due to be completed by 2019.

Set on a 1.3 km retail strip, The Drive at Akoya by Damac, which is to feature an outdoor cinema and skating rink, the properties will have views across the Trump International Golf Club, which is already fully grassed.

DAMAC Properties is also working on a second project in the area, NAIA Celestia, which is due to be handed over to owners in 2017. A ground plus seven floor complex comprising of luxury hotel apartment studios, one and two bedroom apartments. The modern, architectural design inspires an opulent residential lifestyle, incorporating modern, sleek finishes in a warm, welcoming layout. NAIA Celestia will also come with a state-of-the-art gymnasium and health and fitness club, as well as a swimming pool, and luxurious spa with the Celsetia property also set to have its own retail area, with designer boutiques, fine dining restaurants, and an attractive retail avenue.


Work is already well underway and National Piling has completed all excavation and piling work, with the dewatering process already started.


“NAIA Celestia is the jewel in the crown development in the area, luxury five-star standard services and furnishings will create a luxurious atmosphere within a key location of new Dubai,” added McLoughlin.


About the Author

Web Development CompanyTechyPros