Dubai's Nakheel still touting shelved Trump Tower

Developer says Trump Hotel scrapped in 2009 to become "landmark icon"

Investors, Nakheel

Debt-ridden Dubai developer Nakheel is still promoting its Trump International Hotel & Tower project, more than four years since it was halted.

According to Nakheel’s website for the Palm Jumeirah, the project is “The striking centrepiece of the island”, adding that it is “a 60-storey mixed-use luxury hotel and residential building destined to become a landmark icon in Dubai’s skyline”.

The project was first halted in 2009 after the Dubai property crash, and two years ago local media reported it had been scrapped. "We have to be realistic about these projects now… There is no market demand for them. We will be selective," chairman AliRashid Lootah told The National newspaper.

Last November, Nakheel opened its new US$6m Al Ittihad Park on the proposed site of the Trump project, with the monorail 'Trump Tower' station renamed 'Al Ittihad'.

Lootah said then: “Al Ittihad Park is a new, unique venue for residents to walk, jog or simply relax in natural, shaded surroundings, and a new tourist attraction for visitors to the UAE who want to learn about our country’s diverse plantlife.”

However, according to Nakheel’s website: “[Trump Tower] comprises a 368 room condo hotel and 388 freehold residential apartments. A dramatic sky lobby, suspended above The Park will create a grand sense of arrival. The lower floor retail area will provide a natural extension of The Golden Mile.”

The website adds: “The Trump International Hotel & Tower features a split-linked tower, an innovative open core design, which will minimise shadows and maximise views from the Shoreline Apartments and straight up The Trunk. Views from inside the tower will be spectacular as well, revealing inspiring panoramas of the island, Dubai and the Arabian Gulf, with all rooms benefiting from a sea view.”

Nakheel did not respond to enquiries from Arabian Business on why it continued to promote the project.

The company has been made to write down the value of its real estate assets by US$21.4bn since 2008 and has been forced into a US$16bn debt restructuring plan.

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