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Al Barsha district in Dubai – is it worth investing in it?

Район Al Barsha (Аль Барша) в Дубае – стоит ли в него инвестировать?

Al Barsha is a cozy respectable residential area in the west of the city. It is an autonomous community that includes several neighborhoods with many residential complexes, well-developed social and transport infrastructure. It is suitable for permanent residence with family and children, as well as for rent and investment.

Description of Dubai’s Al Barsha district

Al Barsha is a large new area, the development of which is actively continuing. Approximately in the middle there is a highway that divides the territory of the community into two parts: Al Barsha and Al Barsha South (southern part). The community is bounded on all sides by major highways, which provides excellent transport links to other parts of the city: in the northwest lies Dubai’s main highway, the Sheikh Zayed Highway, as well as another major highway, the Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Highway.

Al Barsha is bordered by Dubai Motor City to the south, and Jumeirah Village to the southwest. Despite the proximity of motorways, the area is characterized by peace and tranquility. As construction continues, real estate prices are significantly lower than in the neighboring old locations. This attracts married couples, wealthy foreigners, as well as businessmen who come to the UAE on business.

An additional factor that attracts families with children is the presence of several educational institutions operating according to the American education system. After graduating, young people receive excellent knowledge, and a graduate diploma allows them to continue their studies in many countries of the world. There are several art galleries among the cultural sites.

There are no special attractions in the form of unique towers, architectural compositions or special park areas here. However, this is offset by the proximity of the unique Mall of the Emirates, with its famous indoor ski resort Ski Dubai.

The disadvantages include the distance from the beach areas.

History

District

Like many other new areas of Dubai, Al Barsha grew up on the site of deserted sand dunes. Local peasants raised camels here and engaged in other types of agriculture. After the start of the implementation of the plan for the general modernization of the territory, these places have changed beyond recognition: modern high-rise buildings have grown in place of dunes and tents of local nomads, camel trails have turned into major highways, park areas have been laid out on the once deserted lifeless expanses, gardens have bloomed, ponds and fountains have appeared.

The starting point for the development of the location was the laying of the Sheikh Zayed Highway. Then in 2005, the giant Mall of the Emirates opened with hundreds of boutiques, cafes, restaurants, as well as a unique indoor ski slope.

Excellent transport infrastructure combined with a convenient geographical location made the community attractive to investors, as well as people looking for comfortable living conditions near business districts at affordable prices. Investors’ interest in the location increased with the opening of the metro station, and tourists began to choose it more often to visit since several large hotel complexes, including the Sheraton and the Kempinski Hotel, have grown here.

Architecture

Al Barsha

The territory of the community is divided into 5 neighborhoods. Their layout combines low-rise buildings with high-rise residential complexes, and architectural styles organically combined the features of tradition and modernity. A lot of glass, innovative engineering solutions, and modern design techniques are used in the decoration of facades. Here you can find luxury villas made in a strictly traditional Arabic style, as well as townhouses equipped in high-tech style using the most modern technological solutions. At the same time, all residential buildings are spacious, comfortable, and environmentally friendly.

Main sights

As noted above, the list of attractions in the Dubai Al Barsha area is still small, but there are several interesting places.

The Mall of the Emirates occupies a central place among them. For residents and guests of the city who like to ski, the mall has a ski slope with five slopes of varying difficulty all year round. A separate descent is designed for beginners, but there are more difficult ones for those who have sufficient skills for downhill. You can go down not only on skis, but also on a snowboard or on a simple “cheesecake”.Vacationers can rent any equipment, as well as use the services of instructors. Visitors with young children can have fun playing snowballs.

The mall has several cinemas, an aquarium, a virtual reality park, and many themed playgrounds for children’s entertainment, as well as for children and parents to spend time together.

Miracle Garden

Another amazing place is the Miracle Garden. This is a flower park, in which paintings, compositions, installations, designs are collected from flowers of incredible complexity and beauty, and entire themed gardens are laid out.

Dubai Butterfly Garden is a real attraction. Butterflies of all possible colors and sizes live here in special enclosures. Continuously fluttering in the air, they create a fascinating sight. It is worth mentioning separately about the vegetation of the aviaries: each one has selected those types of flora that butterflies are used to living in natural conditions. These are the most complex compositions, collected from different types of flowers, shrubs, trees, requiring complex care and maintaining climatic conditions that are almost close to ideal.

A park with a large artificial pond is not so much an attraction as a wonderful place for a quiet relaxing holiday in the shade of lush greenery of trees. Running tracks are laid between the landscape compositions, tennis courts, playgrounds for children, as well as barbecue areas. You can ride on a rented catamaran or boat on the lake. On Saturdays, there is a market where locally produced goods are sold.

Culture, lifestyle

Al Barsha is a location where the cultures of many nations get along. Local Arab traditions and customs are observed here, but they respect the traditions of the peoples of other countries, since a multicultural society has been formed in the community.

Hospitality is an integral part of Oriental culture. If you come to visit Arab houses, even for a short time, you will definitely be treated to delicious Arabic coffee brewed according to recipes from a century ago, and sweet dates – a symbol of hospitality.

Dubai Neighborhood

Great importance is attached to the observance of customs and rituals in everyday life. This is an important feature of the local culture, which all residents of the community must take into account. For example, in the holy month of Ramadan, it is necessary to fast in the daytime, pray a lot, and reflect on the spiritual. Foreigners are not required to fast, but eating during the day in front of Muslims is considered impolite. Therefore, it is recommended to do this in special cafes or restaurants in hotels.

In order to maintain and preserve their traditions, as well as to familiarize visitors with them more closely, many cultural events and festivals are organized in Al Barsha, where national music is played, traditional dances and works of art are demonstrated. These are very colorful educational spectacles that are of great interest among expats as well as tourists.

At the same time, cultural shows far from Islamic traditions are organized in the community. For example, a jazz festival is held here every February, bringing together famous jazz, blues, and pop music performers from different countries.

Another interesting festival is held for those who like to eat delicious food. That’s what it’s called – gastronomic. This is a real extravaganza of smells and tastes. Tents are set up in the open air, temporary restaurants are opened where you can taste the most exotic dishes and drinks, participate in cooking shows, contests, and attend master classes by renowned chefs.

In addition, many festivals dedicated to the cultural traditions of other peoples are held in the area. Usually those who live here.

Speaking of lifestyle, it is impossible not to mention clothes. Despite the fact that the community is inhabited by wealthy citizens, it is not customary to dress brightly, expensively or too attractively here. On the contrary, traditionally, women and men dress modestly, discreetly. This tradition is especially evident when attending religious events.

It is customary to spend free time here according to interests. Many people go to their favorite restaurants in the evenings, others do sports in the gym or outdoors. Mall of the Emirates provides great opportunities for recreation and entertainment for adults and children.

Local cuisine

Restaurant in the area

Since a multicultural society has formed in the community, restaurateurs, focusing on different strata of the population, offer dishes of various cuisines. However, the local is very popular with representatives of all cultures. This is due to the fact that they are prepared mainly from meat, rice, seafood, seasoning the dishes with fragrant oriental spices. The food turns out to be delicious and satisfying. Most often, in cafes and restaurants, they order sweet crumpets – lukaymat, wheat porridge with meat – haris or rice with meat and spices – machbus.

Restaurants are considered the most popular:

  1. Kapadokya Turkish Kitchen. This is an institution with Turkish cuisine, where you can taste traditional dishes typical of any corner of Turkey. The restaurant’s menu is a small journey through the cities and provinces of Turkey.
  2. Khun Chai. This is a Thai restaurant with bright interior decoration and fragrant cuisine. It serves curry, fragrant rice dishes, stir-fry.
  3. Al Fanar. This gastronomic establishment specializes in seafood dishes: shrimp, lobster, grilled fish.
  4. Golden Tasty. This is a favorite place for lovers of South Asian cuisine (Indian, Pakistani). The dishes included in the menu are also generously seasoned with aromatic spices. These are curries, kebabs, biryani.

Shopping

Mall of the Emiratess

Emirates Mall is the main retail outlet in Dubai, as well as the whole country. There are boutiques of famous world brands that sell fashionable clothes, cosmetics, jewelry, electronics, and home decor. The variety of trade offers is beyond comprehension, but the prices of things are appropriate.

More affordable prices can be found in another shopping center – Al Barsha Mall. It is not so pompous and luxurious, on the contrary, the atmosphere here is democratic and relaxed.

In order to buy the right things and not go beyond the budget, you should prepare for shopping in advance. It is necessary to clearly determine the amount that you are ready to spend, and while in the store, do not deviate from your intended goals, since there are dozens of tempting offers at every step.

Despite the fact that malls are not bazaars in the traditional sense, it is customary to bargain here. It’s a local tradition, part of the way of life. You should not immediately agree to a discount. Pretend that you are not satisfied with the price and leave. You will probably be stopped and offered more favorable terms: no seller will want to lose a buyer.

Do not buy things at the first boutique you come across. Go through several, compare prices. They can be very different in many things.

Well, if you want to buy a lot of things at very low prices, wait for the shopping festival, which is held annually from December to February. During the festival, all stores hold a lot of promotions, arrange sales, and provide big discounts on many products.

Investment attractiveness

Architecture

Al Barsha is a growing respectable location, populated by 75%. Some residential complexes are still under construction, but the main transport and social infrastructure facilities have already been formed, which made the location convenient for living and working or studying outside of it.

The advantageous geographical location, combined with a high level of comfort and excellent transport accessibility, has increased the attractiveness of the community for investors. So far, the cost of real estate is relatively low, especially for facilities under construction. In the latter, you can buy a house in installments or on credit, which makes it even more affordable.

When the construction is fully completed, prices will rise, and many preferential purchase options will become unavailable. But for those who purchase real estate now, it will become a profitable investment with good returns: prices will rise not only for purchase, but also for rent. So far, the yield varies from 2.6% for apartments with 6-7 bedrooms to 5% for a one–bedroom apartment and almost 7% for a studio.

As can be seen from the description, Dubai’s Al Barsha district can be classified as a community with high investment attractiveness.

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Vladimir Sviridov
Vladimir Sviridov
General Manager RLC Consulting
With a Postgraduate Masters in Finance from The, Moscow State University, Russia. Vladimir started his professional career as an auditor of the financial sector of EY. After that, he worked for several years in senior positions in corporate banking. In 2018-2021, he managed the finances of a large agricultural holding, and is currently responsible for strategic planning, corporate partnership and financial management in the role of General Manager of RLC Consulting GROUP in the UAE.

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