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Shaikh Khalid lays the foundation stone of the project

$93m waterfront mall work in Bahrain begins

MANAMA, October 1, 2014

Work on Bahrain's newest coastal development featuring a BD35 million ($93 million) waterfront mall got underway yesterday (September 30).

The Avenues Bahrain shopping centre is the focal point of a new corniche being created by the King Faisal Corniche Development Company (KFCDC) off King Faisal Highway, with a creek separating it from Bahrain Bay, said a report in the Gulf Daily News (GDN), our sister publication.

The project offers public access to a 1.5-km stretch of coast including children's outdoor play areas, a running track and outdoor gym sets, as well as waterfront restaurants and cafes, retail outlets, a suq, an indoor market and entertainment options such as movie theatres, children's arcades and a public park covering 85 per cent of the site.

The ground-breaking ceremony for The Avenues Bahrain, spread along Manama's north-facing waterfront, was held under the patronage of Deputy Prime Minister Shaikh Khalid bin Abdulla Al Khalifa, who said it would boost retail trade and tourism, create direct and indirect employment and provide a new leisure and entertainment option.

Also present at the ceremony were ministers, KFCDC deputy chairman and Al Salam Bank Bahrain chief executive Yousif Taqi.

KFCDC is a venture by Bahraini private investors acting in partnership with Kuwait-based M H Alshaya and Mabanee Corporation, owners of The Avenues Kuwait which is billed as one of the largest malls in the world - with more than 800 stores spread over 425,000-sq-m.

M H Alshaya is an international retail franchise operator that manages, owns and operates more than 70 international brands and 2,600 outlets in the Middle East and North Africa, Russia, Turkey and Europe.

Mabanee general manager Waleed Alsharian told the GDN that the design of The Avenues Bahrain would combine a traditional Bahraini suq with contemporary elements.

It will cover a total area of approximately 265,000-sq-m and is expected to open in early 2016.

The mall will have a total leasable area of approximately 38,000-sq-m, occupying only 15 per cent of the overall site.

"Bearing in mind the surrounding landmark buildings, we have chosen to limit the vertical space to one level," he said.

Parking space for over 1,400 vehicles will also be provided.

"A unique feature will be a water taxi service that we are planning to start, which will let shoppers get to the mall by boat from jetties around the country - including one planned near the National Theatre," Alsharian added.

Regional and international retail investors are said to have expressed interest in leasing units at the completed mall.

"The owners and developers of the project have extensive experience in the sector and this will in turn guarantee both the success of the project and the consequent benefits this brings to the public," said Mabanee Company and KFCDC chairman Mohammed Abdulaziz Alshaya. - TradeArabia News Service




Tags: Bahrain | mall | waterfront |

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