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Armani, Versace... now Bulgari: Dubai's super-luxury residential property

Competition in the super-luxury residential market segment in Dubai is set to get hotter with Italian luxury brand Bulgari entering the real estate arena to compete with Giorgio Armani and Gianni Versace-branded properties.

Meraas, a Dubai-based master developer, on Monday launched the residential component of the Bulgari Resort and Residences in Jumeira Bay Island, saying sales will commence soon.

Though prices were not disclosed, the company claimed it would be at the "very top end" of the market.

“We don’t disclose prices… we have two penthouses in London and five mansion in Bali and they are priced at very top end of the market.

Here as well we will price it at the top end of the market,” Silvio Ursini, Executive Vice President, Bulgari, told Emirates 24|7.

The residential component will comprise 165 apartments, eight penthouses and 15 mansions.

Apartments range from one to four bedrooms in six buildings, while the mansions will have three to six bedrooms. Besides, a 50-berth marina and a Bulgari Yacht Club will be part of the residential component.

Meraas had announced the launch of the Bulgari Resort Dubai – the fifth in the world - in May 2014. It will consist of 101 rooms/ suites, 20 hotel villas and six themed restaurants on the promenade.

The project, designed by Italian architectural firm Antonio Citterio Patricia Viel and Partners, is scheduled for completion in the first quarter of 2017.

“We have a man-made island that it is attracting a lot of attraction and we are targeting the niche market, for now.

Dubai is a branded city and it is important to have all brands here,” said Meraas Chief Hospitality Officer Cherif Hosny.

“Demand for prime property will continue to rise and as the market matures, expectations will rise for qualitative, detail-focused and refined finished products.”

He, however, did not disclose the project value, but said the project was "fully funded."

According to Bulgari official, there was a lot of interest in the Dubai project and they were expecting demand to come from citizens of Gulf Cooperation Council countries, Europe, China and India.

Earlier this week, the Dubai Land Department  said total transactions crossed Dh64 billion in the first quarter 2015 with Indians, British nationals and Pakistanis topping the list of expatriate investors.

Although Ursini did not disclose the expected room rates at the time of opening of the resort, he claimed the rates would by far be the "highest in the market."

“The rates in the hotel are a mix of your room categories. In this specific case, the 20 hotel villas will obviously drive an incredibly high rate because it’s a very unique product.”

The Dubai developer is currently working on building the infrastructure on the man-made island, which is expected to be completed by late 2017. It is connected to mainland (Jumeirah) through a bridge.

Bulgari, which was bought by LVMH Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton SA in 2011, operates hotels in Milan, Bali and London. It is currently working on two properties in Shanghai and Beijing in China.

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