Palm Jumeirah has really led the way for the surge in property prices over the last 12 months, says Luxhabitat's Luxury Sales Director Andrew Cleator. "Six years ago, transactions for Signature Villas (with five or six bedrooms) peaked at AED30 million, while Garden Homes (with four or five bedrooms) would command up to AED15 million," he says. "However, they have now exceeded the values of 2008, having increased by as much as a further 30 to 50 per cent." So, what's pushing such a huge spike in value? "Trade in the resale market has been extremely healthy because of its unique, iconic location, known as the Eighth Wonder of the World. People living on The Palm are a stone's throw from some of the world's best hotels, with fantastic swimming pools, gyms, spa facilities and restaurants, not to mention amazing beaches."
Villas situated at the far end of the fronds with higher numbers are valued approximately 25 per cent higher than those nearer the entrance. These villas have more expansive ocean views and a higher degree of privacy. Upgrades can boost values further, and renovation work is not uncommon on the island. "It is not unusual for owners to virtually tear a villa down and start again," says Cleator. "In these cases a villa that's worth AED30 million in its raw form could sell for AED45 million or more after a fantastic upgrade, with a new kitchen, bathrooms, pool and landscaping etc."
There's a new level of creativity to be found on the latest fronds to be developed. The Signature Villas and Garden Homes on fronds G, J and N will tend to move away from the traditional architecture on The Palm, and offer a basement level, too. "This is a new idea for residents, and a versatile floor ideal for a home gym or cinema," says Cleator. "These designs will be more minimalist, reminiscent of the beachfront homes in Miami." This is an exciting time for Palm Jumeirah, says the specialist, who can see the completion of The Palm on the horizon.
"The launch of Nakheel's new mall has been long awaited but has now been approved," he explains. "As well as retail, restaurants and beauty salons, there will be public transport links, too. A whole lifestyle package will be offered once this is complete, similar to The Walk at JBR. People will be able to live on The Palm without the need to travel far, which is essential to the private, luxury lifestyle sought after here."