Dubai Holding and Emaar Properties have launched a mega ‘tech-driven’ retail project, Dubai Square, at the Dubai Creek Harbour development.
The new mall, which will offer 8.07 million sq ft of gross floor retail space – equivalent to the size of more than 100 football pitches – has nearly double the gross leasable area of Dubai Mall.
Located in the centre of Dubai Creek Harbour, Dubai Square will be spread across three levels, and will feature the Middle East’s largest Chinatown, an events arena, luxury retail, dining and leisure outlets, as well as a cineplex, a waterpark, and an Art District.
The mall, which will promote ‘omnichannel retailing’, will offer customers options to shop via desktop, mobile or at a retail store, a statement said.
Digital facilities will include custom-designed mobile apps, quick checkout solutions, search and barcode scanning applications, radio-frequency identification technology, mobile payments and click-and-collect services.
Featuring skylights, glazed roofs and shopfront windows, Dubai Square will also have retailers from the automotive, computing, sustainable technologies, 3D printing, drones and artificial intelligence sectors, the statement added.
Dubai Square’s ground floor will feature an events arena and event spaces on streets and alleys. The entertainment arena will have 3D projection mapping, theatrical sound and lighting, and high wire rigging and is set to host concerts and theatre shows, celebrity performances, acrobatics shows and exhibitions.
The first floor has a four-lane boulevard with retail, dining and leisure outlets. The fashion offering will include special VIP dressing rooms, smart fitting rooms with interactive mirrors, curated private fashion collections, personalised AI recommendations, 3D printed clothing and accessories and fashion museums.
A grand luxury avenue will have high-profile brands and a piazza, as well as casual dining restaurants.
Cuisine options will include fusion, vegan, Peruvian and French-Vietnamese and specially designed apps for ordering food will minimise queuing and long wait-times, the statement said.
Dubai Square will also have live cooking stations, street vendors, festive pop-up markets, grab-and-go F&B offerings and an organic market.
The second floor will feature activities such as an ‘Ice Adventure’, a cineplex, a waterpark, sports arena, supermarket and a metro link.
Dubai Square will also include an Art District, which will feature sculptures, statues, permanent exhibitions, ephemeral performance art, large-scale concerts, one-man shows and year-round events to “integrate retail with dance, drama, literature, painting, music, photography, cinema and other art forms”.
The Art District will be driven by Art Emaar, an initiative launched recently to bring new aesthetic experiences to Emaar’s master-planned developments.
Dubai Square will also be linked directly to the Dubai Creek Tower – set to become Dubai’s tallest tower – through an underground extension.
The extension will connect to a plaza at the base of the Tower. The Plaza is a clock-shaped area with landscaping, palm trees and water features spread across half a kilometre of land.
Dubai Square is expected to play a “central role” in driving retail sales in Dubai, projected to reach over $43.8bn (Dhs160bn) by 2021, and serving the estimated 20 million tourists to the city by 2020.
Abdulla Al Habbai, chairman of Dubai Holding, said: “Dubai is experiencing tremendous tourist inflow and continues to rank highly as a holiday destination for people from many different parts of the world.
“Dubai Square is our new retail and leisure destination, and with this we aim to actually redefine the shopping experience by introducing a variety of innovative concepts.”
Mohamed Alabbar, chairman of Emaar Properties, added: “Dubai Square disrupts the traditional mall and retail experience.
“With its omnichannel offering, it not only drives in-store retail but also the online engagement of brands with customers. With its location in Dubai Creek Harbour, and by serving as the closest mega-retail district to millions of passengers passing through the Dubai International Airport, it meets the real need for a new generation lifestyle destination, especially given Dubai’s growth in population and tourist arrivals.”
Dubai Creek Harbour features over 7.3 million sq m of residential space, nearly 940,000 sq m of retail precincts, 300,000 sq m of commercial space, over 66,000 sq m of cultural space, 700,000 sq m of parks and open spaces, and 24 hotels with 5,800 rooms.
It will also have a marina, schools, hospitals and recreational facilities as well as four Dubai Metro links.
When completed, Dubai Creek Harbour will be home to over 200,000 people.