The Mall of Qatar, a retail and entertainment project set for completion in September 2015, will offer an experience completely unique to those seen in Dubai, according to its head.
Donald Weir, general manager of The Mall Of Qatar, told Gulf Business the complex will rival shopping malls within the region while also setting the standard internationally.
“Our offering will be something completely different from shopping malls in Dubai, a unique blend of brands and experiences that we are sure will attract attention from a worldwide and regional audience,” he said.
Occupying over 423,000 square metres of built up area, the Mall of Qatar will hold approximately 400 shops and a five star luxury hotel.
An estimated 25 to 30 per cent of the total shopping space is set to be taken by international brands new to Qatar, with Weir highlighting that Mall of Qatar W.L.L is willing to partner both financially and operationally to bring the new brands in.
The site is located in the “high net worth” area of Al Rayyan, close to Doha and within 25 minutes drive of three quarters of Qatar’s population, according to Weir. It will also be on Qatar’s new metro line and next to one of the 2022 football World Cup stadiums.
“Due to the Mall of Qatar’s location we will naturally attract a very premium group of customers. The Al Rayyan area is already surrounded by high end residents, and of course we will be targeting this exclusive audience with a district in luxury unprecedented in Qatar,” he said.
While the site will look to attract tourists with its location close to the proposed Saudi-Doha-Bahrain Light Rapid Rail Link terminus and the new Hamad international Airport, a major focus is set to be Qatar’s existing population.
According to Weir, there is over 10 million square feet of unmet retail capacity in Qatar, of which the mall will occupy two million square feet.
“The influx of new shopping malls coming on line should be easily sustained, and create healthy competition as well as a diversified market which will be a very exciting time for the residents and visitors to Qatar who until now have been limited to a much smaller group of predominantly regional retailers,” he said.
Partners for the project include Chapman Taylor Architects, KEO Architects and McArthur & Company.