There are few housing estates in the world where the cheapest home you can buy is on the market for a whopping Dh7.2 million.
Despite splashing out a sum equating to US$1.96 million, whoever buys this four bedroom villa in the Abu Dhabi beachfront development, Hidd Al Saadiyat, might find it difficult to keep up with the Joneses living in the gated community.
Given that the largest villas in Hidd Al Saadiyat measure more than 29,000 square feet and are being marketed for around Dh40 million, the neighbours are likely to be some of the richest and best connected people in the country.
Located on a long thin spit of land at the far end of the capital’s cultural district, Saadiyat Island, the new development is made up of 461 mansions. This particular beach villa has a partial sea view and is just a few minutes walk to breathtaking white sand beaches on either side of the land strip.
In December, when developer SDIC starts handing over the new villas, Hidd Al Saadiyat’s residents and a few nesting turtles will be the only inhabitants entitled to cavort on the seven kilometre private beaches says Greg Slingerland, Hidd Al Saadiyat’s project director.
Certainly this 4,725 square feet home includes most of the mod cons one would expect for a villa in its price bracket. Set on a 6,780 square foot plot, it comes with a generously sized garden, a barbecue deck and a swimming pool. The bedrooms are all en suite with a sizeable rain shower and wet room in the master bathroom and all the bedrooms include large built-in wardrobes.
Other features include a maid’s room, a double garage and the kitchen is fully fitted to include Miele appliances. The home also has smart controls, enabling its inhabitants to remotely change the temperature and lighting and even open the curtains.
But no matter how smug the owners may feel about their electric curtains, they will always know that just a few feet away, their more wealthy neighbours will have something bigger and better.
Mr Slingerland says that some of the largest villas in the development have been custom built with 2,000 square metre basements including salons, barber shops and private cinemas.
What is Hidd Al Saadiyat?
Hidd Al Saadiyat is a 1.5 million square metre beach side development on Saadiyat Island in the capital being built by the private Abu Dhabi based developer SDIC. The first phase of 461 villas is due to be handed over from December this year and construction of a second phase including a marina for 110 boats is currently underway.
How far along is the project?
This week the developer announced that the project’s key infrastructure work was nearly finished with all the underground services including water, sewerage and electrical cables installed. All electrical substations and lifting stations are completed, the main roads have all been paved and all light pole bases and electrical cables have been fitted.
Is it sold yet?
SDIC says it has sold all but around 50 of the villas in the first phase of the project. However, the majority of those left are the ones in the cheaper price bracket because it has built more of them. Local estate agents are also competing with the developer to sell a number of homes in this price bracket – which had been purchased off plan.
Is building a bunch of expensive properties on a thin strip of sand a good idea?
Project manager LEED has built a series of stone flood defences to enable the homes to be built along the beach without fear of them getting washed away. Flood defences also include a long groyne of rock which means that the sand from further up the island is retained.