The ultimate property guide to help you relocate and save cash
Time Out Dubai staff
This time of year is a transient period for many Dubaians: some return home with their families, while others choose to escape the heat by taking a holiday in cooler climes. For the rest of us, however, now’s a good time to find a new home for a price that’s right. With this in mind, Time Out’s intrepid editors have been house-hunting on your behalf, scouring the city for a range of great deals in both established locations and the hottest up-and-coming areas. For each, we’ve pinpointed some choice properties, listing the size, price, agent descriptions and details at time of going to press. The aim is to give you a good idea of what’s out there, as well as opening your eyes to different areas of the city you might not have otherwise considered – while saving some cash along the way.
Arabian Ranches This slightly more expensive villa community near Dubai Sports City is popular with families, who move here to be further away from the traffic of Sheikh Zayed Road. The villas and their respective gardens tend to be larger than those in the Springs and Meadows, and it could be argued that the community is more attractively landscaped than Emirates Living, which has suffered at the hands of recent road works.
Three-bed villa Size: 2,465 sq ft. This townhouse villa features an upgraded ground floor, where you’ll find a lobby, closed kitchen, spacious living and dining area and a study. Upstairs there’s a master bed with en-suite, and a further two bedrooms and bathroom. The villa has a private garden, and is located near the community swimming pool, tennis court and kids’ play area.
Agent: Rene D’Souza at Better Homes (050 246 6138).
Rent: Dhs135,000 (one cheque).
Five-bed villa, Polo Homes Size: 7,000 sq ft. This huge villa features five bedrooms, five bathrooms and a study, as well as gym and pool access. It’s five minutes from Jumeirah English Speaking School, and a 20-minute drive from Mall of the Emirates.
Barsha Less glamorous than Dubai Marina but substantially cheaper than The Greens, you’ll get more space for your money in this area, which is separated into three districts. Al Barsha 1 is located within walking distance of Mall of the Emirates and is home to a number of medium-rise buildings, cafés, massage salons and barbers, as well as a brand new N_K_D Pizza. The second and third districts extend a little further into the desert and house large villas.
One-bed apartment, Bhawan Building Size: 1,060 sq ft. The Bhawan Building, located right behind Mall of the Emirates, is just over three years old, but in good condition. This well-maintained one-bed features a maid’s room and even a study. Tenants get free access to the pool, gym, squash court, steam room and sauna.
Agent: Roland at Cluttons (050 456 3690).
Rent: Dhs65,000 (four cheques).
Two-bed apartment, Al Barsha Valley Size: 1,000 sq ft. This nine-storey building features basement parking, separate gyms for men and women and an open rooftop swimming pool. The apartment itself comes with a fully-equipped kitchen, two toilets and a bath, plus a guest toilet. There are various shops underneath the building, and it’s a few minutes’ walk from Mall of the Emirates.
Agent: Mary Grace Alba at Osprey Real Estate (04 435 7525).
Bur Dubai and Deira These areas of Old Dubai represent the heart of the city’s cultural and historical heritage. The northern end of the city features many of Dubai’s most authentic tourist attractions including the dhow wharfage and the historic Bastakiya quarter. It’s also home to one of Dubai’s most talked-about restaurants – Table 9 at the Hilton Dubai Creek – and many popular long-running nightlife spots, such as Rock Bottom Café at Bur Dubai’s Regent Palace Hotel. This area is well connected by metro, and more tucked-away destinations can be easily reached by taxi from Oud Metha, Khalid Bin Al Waleed and Al Ras stations.
One-bed apartment, Deira Size: 825 sq ft. This may seem pricey for a Deira property, but the apartment comes fully furnished, including built-in wardrobes and kitchen appliances, and also features a study. Well positioned facing the creek and near Deira City Centre, this Emaar apartment building is also fairly luxurious and offers a pool, gym and covered parking.
Agent: Mr Viquar at Homes Care Real Estate (050 874 3114).
Rent: Dhs85,000 (two cheques).
Three-bed apartment, Bur Dubai Size: 1,788 sq ft. Located on Khalid Bin Al Waleed Road, an epicentre of shops and good budget restaurants, this apartment has a large balcony. The building has a gym and pool, with a free car park and free maintenance.
Agent: Imran Khan at Middle East Real Estate (055 144 22624).
Downtown Dubai In the shadows of the city’s towering centrepiece and within walking distance of the world’s largest mall, it’s hard to find a place more quintessentially ‘Dubai’ than Downtown. Sitting between DIFC and Business Bay, it can be pricier than many other areas, and is mainly populated with well-paid Western and Indian expats. Transport links are great, with a footbridge now under construction to link Dubai Mall with Burj Khalifa metro station, while car access is easier than it once was thanks to the completion of Defence Roundabout. Top spots to eat and drink include Calabar at The Address Downtown, Nezesaussi at Al Manzil Hotel, and Rivington Grill and Left Bank at Souk Al Bahar.
Studio, Burj Khalifa Size: 546 sq ft. It may be the tallest building in the world, but its apartments are still relatively affordable, with the range of 900 studio, one-, two-, three- and four-bed apartments starting from Dhs100,000 a year. Some residents report that the draconian security measures can be a drag – but what a name to boast, and imagine the view.
Agent: Asteco Properties (04 403 7700).
Rent: Dhs100,000 (two cheques).
One-bed apartment, 8 Boulevard Walk Size: 916 sq ft. To help you make the most of Dubai’s year-round sunshine, this spacious one-bed features a huge terrace overlooking the heart of Downtown. Its location borders on perfection: positioned just off the ‘nerve centre’ of Emaar Boulevard, the 35-floor block boasts an equidistant ten-minute walk to both The Dubai Mall and the metro station, and features a 24-hour Al Maya supermarket on the ground floor. Helpfully for new arrivals, the apartment is decked out in surprisingly tasteful, modern furnishings. Agent: Apex Properties (04 450 8666). Rent: Dhs90,000 (two cheques).
Two-bed apartment, The Lofts Size: 1,400sq ft. One of the most well-known developments in Downtown, the three towers that make up The Lofts are perennially popular thanks to their easily accessible location. They’re set to be downgraded shortly with the construction of a new tower blocking the Burj Khalifa views – but this should make now the ideal time to bag a bargain. This two-bed is just two minutes’ walk from both The Dubai Mall and the metro.
Agent: Apex properties (04 450 8666).
Rent: Dhs105,000 (two cheques).
Four-bed villa, Kamoon, Old Town Size: 2,699 sq ft. For a touch of quiet in the bustling Downtown district, check out the (really rather new) ‘Old Town’. These low-rise blocks, featuring atmospheric walkways, great communal pools and a scattering of shops, are the ideal spot for well-off DIFC types to nurture a family – which is why we’ve picked this four-bed (plus a maid’s room) in Kamoon, complete with walk-in closets and covered parking.
Dubai Marina The southern end of town seems to be undergoing a resurgence of late, with rental prices rapidly increasing. However, conscientious tenants-to-be can still snag an affordable apartment, provided they know where to look. The area is popular with young Western expats, who enjoy close proximity to the beach plus plentiful cafés and fast-food joints along The Walk, as well as high-end restaurants and bars situated in nearby Grosvenor House and Le Méridien Mina Sehayi.
One-bed apartment, Bay Central West Size: 771 sq ft. This fully furnished apartment in the shiny new Bay Central complex offers a partial sea view and a spacious balcony.
Agent: Mary Grace at Osprey (055 441 4690).
Rent: Dhs80,000 (two cheques).
Two-bed apartment, Park Island Size: 1,300 sq ft. Park Island, though a little more cramped than some of the older marina apartment buildings, does offer great views thanks to a prevalence of floor-to-ceiling windows and a fantastic location. This apartment boasts two bedrooms, each with an en-suite bathroom, and a fully equipped kitchen.
Emirates Living This label is used to describe Emaar’s luxurious Emirates Hills community and its decadent mansions, plus the Lakes, Springs and Meadows communities with their modest villas and handy shopping hubs. All are pet- and family-friendly areas, with lakes for jogging around or walking the dog, alongside supermarkets, cafés, restaurants, mosques and even beauty salons and barber shops. There are plenty of schools dotted throughout, and regular buses pass through, though taxis can be difficult to come by during peak hours.
Two-bed villa, Springs 9 Size: 1,794 sq ft. Both bedrooms in this villa have en-suite bathrooms, and there is also a study that could be used as a third box-room. The surrounding community boasts shared pools and play areas, and there are a number of shopping centres, supermarkets and mosques nearby.
Agent: Urvashi Sidhpara at Better Homes (050 342 3109).
Rent: Dhs100,000 (four cheques).
Three-bed villa, Springs 14 Size: 3,030 sq ft. A fully-furnished villa with a full lake view from the back of the house, there is also a study that can be used as an extra guest room, as well as a maid’s room. The master bedroom has a walk-in closet and en-suite bathroom, while the garden is fully landscaped. The property will be available for rent from Tuesday July 31.
Agent: Ali Tabrizi at Better Homes (050 506 1142).
Jumeirah Lakes Towers This up-and-coming area provides a cheaper alternative to Dubai Marina, situated just across Sheikh Zayed Road. With a Spinneys and Carrefour on site, as well as numerous restaurants and, of course, trusty McGettigan’s, the area is now a true self-contained community. Of course, getting into Jumeirah Lakes Towers in the first place is made rather difficult by the horrid one-way system, though there’s some respite to the congestion thanks to the conveniently located Dubai Marina and Jumeirah Lakes Towers Metro stations.
Studio, Gold Crest Executive Tower Size: 505 sq ft. You’ve got to love a building that manages to cram the words ‘Gold’ and ‘Executive’ into its name. But despite its rather highfalutin mantle (plus the fact it boasts a rooftop swimming pool), this studio apartment is actually very affordable.
Agent: Mariska at Appello Real Estate (055 846 5020).
Rent: Dhs40,000 (four cheques).
Two-bed apartment, Green Lakes Tower Size: 1,680 sq ft. Green Lakes Towers is one of the finest buildings in Jumeirah Lakes Towers, offering practical floor plans and hotel-standard facilities (gym, pool, Jacuzzi, etc). What’s more, it’s located right next to Dubai Marina metro station, which provides a handy walkway across Sheikh Zayed Road to Dubai Marina.
Agent: Mariska at Appello Real Estate (055 846 5020).
Jumeirah Park and Jumeirah Village Triangle These two new developments sit next to the Jumeirah Islands community, itself next to the Springs and Meadows. Built by developer Nakheel (the company behind Palm Jumeirah), houses here are slightly larger than in the older areas nearby, and there is still construction work going on – on the upside, the costs reflect this, which means there’s the possibility to get a four-bed in Jumeirah Park for less than the price of a three-bed elsewhere. One-bed apartment, Jumeirah Village Circle Size: 987 sq ft. A brand new property that has just been handed over, this high-rise is called Manhattan (!), and is accessible from Al Khail Road. The building itself is described as having good finishes, and houses a large pool and gym. Apartments in the complex are typically spacious and relatively affordable.
Agent: Partha Reddy at Better Homes (050 107 7254).
Rent: Dhs40,000 (two cheques).
Two-bed villa, Jumeirah Village Triangle Size: 2,690 sq ft. A brand new villa in a pet-friendly community, this plot has a large garden and an additional maid’s room, and both bedrooms have en-suite facilities. The spacious kitchen is fully-equipped with new appliances including a fridge, cooking range, dishwasher, microwave and washing machine.
Agent: Jawad Motiwala at Better Homes (050 107 7241). Rent: Dhs120,000 (four to six cheques).
Jumeirah & Umm Suqeim Back in the day, relaxed Jumeirah was considered the prize place for expats to dwell, and today it’s still home to thousands who prefer the low-rise villas to towering glassy skyscrapers. Evening entertainment tends to revolve around the coast. The old-school Dubai Marine Beach Resort & Spa hangout still hosts some notable drinking and dining options in the shape of relaxed Mexican bar Loca, trendy al-fresco venue Sho Cho and nightclub Boudoir (renowned for its daily ladies’ nights).
One-bed apartment, Al Maskan 2 Size: 1,000 sq ft. Perfect for an affluent bachelor, bachelorette or young family, this homely low-rise block has a nice community feel, a scenic private courtyard and great swimming pool. The balcony boasts a good view inland, as well as a modern fitted kitchen.
Agent: Akhtar Hussain at Elysian Real Estate (055 650 0665).
Rent: Dhs70,000 (two cheques).
Four-bed villa, Jumeirah 1 Size: 2,500 sq ft. The compound comes with a small private garden, as well as shared swimming pool, gym, maid’s room and four large bedrooms. Situated near the Iranian Hospital, generous windows and a lack of surrounding high-rises ensure it spends the bulk of the day bathed in sunlight. Agent: Glenn at Olive Property Group (04 447 3884).
Mirdif Mirdif is easily accessible thanks to Rashidiya metro station, Emirates Road and Al Awir Road. The area features sizeable family mall Mirdif City Centre, which is home to shops such as Pottery Barn and American Eagle, as well as restaurants including Zafran and California Pizza Kitchen.
One-bed apartment, Ghoroob Size: 650 sq ft. This residential community offers spacious, high-quality apartments designed to suit singletons and families alike, as well as anyone looking for an alternative to ‘high-rise living’.
Agent: Dubai Properties Group (800 374).
Rent: Dhs41,000 (four cheques).
Two-bed villa, Shorooq Size: 1,961 sq ft. Just opposite Mirdif City Centre and Uptown Mirdif shopping centres, this Spanish-style community is set amid landscaped surroundings and offers both villas and spacious apartments, which are fantastic value for money.
Palm Jumeirah The Palm is undoubtedly Dubai’s top address, and the prices here reflect this sentiment. While it can be a bit of a scramble travelling from one building to the next via car, most apartment blocks are equipped with mini-marts, dining and drinking establishments, supermarkets, hair salons and more. Views here can either be stunning or standard (some apartments look directly onto building sites, while others have views of the Burj Al Arab and beach). The easiest way to get around here is via car (or the slightly pricey monorail). Two-bed apartment, Shoreline Building 14 Size: 1,500 sq ft. This apartment is located on the east trunk of The Palm and features a huge balcony with a full sea view, plus three bathrooms. As with all the Shoreline buildings, the rental price includes beach, swimming pool and gym access.
Agent: Mary Grace Alba at Osprey Real Estate (04 435 7525).
Rent: Dhs125,000 (one cheque).
Four-bed villa, Canal Cove Villas Size: 5,000 sq ft. Located on the Crown (Frond 17) in the Canal Cove community, this ocean-facing villa has great views, high ceilings and quality fittings, plus six bathrooms. It also benefits from pool and beach access, a private study and a large terraced balcony.
Agent: Alexandra at Vandort Real Estate Brokers (04 395 1165).
Satwa Bustling Satwa is home to a diverse community, and the restaurant scene reflects that: Pakistani eatery Ravi’s is one of Dubai’s most iconic dining spots. There’s also popular and quirky Thai restaurant Smiling BKK, authentic al-fresco dining at Pars Iranian Kitchen and plenty of Filipino favourites too. The area is easily accessible via bus routes and Al Jafiliya metro station. There’s also a sense of community here, with neighbourhood fixtures such as free basketball and volleyball courts at the top of 2nd of December Street, and the spacious Jumeirah Open Beach.
One-bed apartment, Dhiyafa Street Size: 1,000 sq ft. This apartment, located in the Dhiyafa Building near the flagpole, offers a large living room and balcony, a fully equipped kitchen and 24-hour security, plus parking, pool, gym and sauna.
Agent: The One Real Estate Brokers (04 238 7812).
Rent: Dhs65,000 (two cheques).
Three-bed villa, Satwa Size: 2,200 sq ft. This detached, two-storey villa features a maid’s room, storeroom, covered car park and even a small rear garden.
Agent: Senthil Kumar at Open Source Real Estate (055 513 9448).
TECOM This up-and-coming area between The Greens and Al Barsha is known for its affordable rent prices. It’s still developing, so many of the surrounding roads and sidewalks are in the process of being completed; similarly, there is a lot of construction going on in the area. This said, the location is convenient thanks to metro stations Dubai Internet City, Sharaf DG and Mall of the Emirates, and a number of entertaining venues – Nelson’s, Belgian Beer Café, Rock Bottom and Byblos – can be found here.
One-bed apartment, ART VIII Building Size: 780 sq ft. This brand new building opens in July: we’re told it features quality finishings and a great use of space, and there’s a well-equipped gym and swimming pool facilities. Two-bed apartments in the same building start at Dhs70,000 (four cheques).
Agent: Brix Property Partners (04 434 4115).
Rent: Dhs45,000 (four cheques).
Two-bed apartment, Al Noor Building Size: 1,450 sq ft. This modern building is conveniently situated near TECOM metro station, and is in close proximity to the manicured lawns, shops and cafés of The Greens. The building itself features a rooftop pool, a gym, parking and free maintenance.
The Greens One of the more pedestrian-friendly areas of the city, The Greens is a well-landscaped community that’s perfect for quiet couples and young families, located next to TECOM and directly opposite Media City. The nearest metro station is a fair walk away in TECOM and unfortunately the area is often clogged with traffic, especially around the strip mall, which houses a number of cafés and fast food outlets, as well as a Choithrams, a DVD rental store and a pharmacy.
Studio, Al Dhafrah 3 Size: 424 sq ft. Perfect for singletons, this affordable studio is a stone’s through from the strip mall, and features an ageing yet well-maintained pool and gym. The deal-maker for this nice little place is the balcony, which makes the studio feel bigger than it actually is.
Agent: Halcon Real Estate (04 360 7422).
Rent: Dhs45,000 (three cheques).
Two-bed apartment, Alka 3 Size: 1,144 sq ft. Though one of the older buildings, Alka 3 features nicely designed apartments, parking, a communal swimming pool (which gets busy at weekends) and a decent gym. What’s more, this apartment comes with a fully-fitted kitchen and generous balcony, which features views of the pool and community.
Agent: Sophie at Brix Property Partners (050 547 1683).
Pitch your ideas now to win up to Dhs25,000 investment
Ajoy Apr 30, 2013 10:39 am
Good that you guys are helping to blow up the Bubble which has been developing for last few months ...we just have to wait and watch for the blowing up..this time it wont take long....
Riyaz Apr 09, 2013 11:39 am
Fak Feb 08, 2013 06:19 pm
Gotta agree with everyone. Very misleading.. Shame on you timeout!!!
Marc Biggani Dec 12, 2012 06:45 pm
The only think that comes to mind is the "TIMEOUTDUBAI Blokes" have become real estate agents all of a sudden(?!?)....In any case you might find a One BEDROOM STUDIO much much cheaper than this article actually promotes....Pay Less Rent 14 page article???
The deal is this:::with some estate agents or landlords..you got to have your cheque book ready!......many apartments are Empty & overprice and you just may hit the jackpot.
You can also find less rents even near the center / marina area if you look around.
bianca Aug 17, 2012 11:44 am
@wass you can still find 2BR places for 50-70k in Mankhool, Karama, Jumeirah end closer to Port Rashid and nearby areas.