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Damac goes to Hollywood with Paramount partnership for hotel

The Dubai property developer Damac Properties has teamed up with the film  giant Paramount Pictures to market a US$1 billion (Dh3.67bn) hotel project in  Downtown Dubai.

The Damac Towers by Paramount scheme of four identical towers each of 250  metres in height will offer views of Burj Khalifa and will include more than  1,400 serviced apartments, a 540-room branded Paramount hotel and a further 200  residences serviced by the hotel.

Construction is already under way, the developer said yesterday. Work is  expected to be completed by the end of 2015.

Luxury branded hotel apartments in Dubai are attracting prices in the region  of Dh5,000 per square foot, compared with ordinary unfinished apartments in the  same area that are selling for Dh3,000 to Dh3,500 per sq ft, the developer  said.

Paramount is not an investor in the project but instead will brand the  development. The deal also includes access to the Paramount movies library and  the right to have a Paramount screening room to show Paramount films such as The  Godfather, Breakfast at Tiffany’s and Titanic. Damac said that the Paramount  hotel and serviced apartments would be located in the so-called Mixed Tower and  would be managed by Paramount Hotels and Resorts. The remaining three towers  would comprise Paramount co-branded serviced apartments that will be managed by  Damac’s hospitality division Damac Maison.

“Most people know the famous Paramount Pictures logo, with the mountain and  22 stars, and they also watched many of the iconic movies the studio produced,” said Thomas van Vliet, the chief executive for Paramount Hotels and Resorts. “The hotels, resorts and residences will be developed using the creative process  honed over Paramount’s 100-year history. The guests in our audience will be led  on a journey that delights the eyes and engages the emotions.”

The new scheme will also comprise a multi-level plaza housing themed  restaurants, shops, meeting and events facilities, a screening room, a sports  centre, swimming pools and a kids’ club, all featuring the Paramount brand or  select partner brands.

“We have been saying for a while that the luxury serviced hotel apartments  sector is set to drive the resurgence in the Dubai property market, and [this  scheme] is the realisation of that prediction,” said Ziad El Chaar, the Damac  managing director.
The news comes less than a month after Damac agreed a  tie-up with the fashion house Fendi to lend its name to two apartment tower  schemes in Dubai Marina and in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.

It also comes as property agents report that work on stalled schemes in  Dubai’s prime areas is starting to pick up.

“We are starting to see work resuming on a few schemes now in the most prime  locations in Dubai,” said Craig Plumb, the head of research at Jones Lang  LaSalle’s Dubai office. “However, these are very few and far between and we have  to be careful that we don’t get too carried away.”

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