Al Hamra Village Marina

The marina is a part of the Ras Al Khaimah Al Hamra Village Development--a beachside resort and tranquil escape from bustling Dubai. This website offers info, pictures and reflections from a marina apartment owner.

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Sunday, June 25, 2006

Construction Progress & Views (8 June)

(Above) The Marina apartments. Viewed from the Al Hamra Fort Hotel, buildings A-E (right to left) are visible. Hidden is building F (behind the left most building pictured). Building G, to complete the set of seven apartment buildings is at the early stages of foundations work.

(Above) View from the ground floor balcony in Building F. Note that the ground floor is on an elevated foundation allowing a sea-view in the distance. The open beach front stretches some 100-200 meters out. This will presumably be landscaped, with an access road running across it, but without any buildings that might otherwise obstruct views, except perhaps for a small beach cabana. Off to the left of the view shown, however, is to be built a villa for the sheikh who manages the development.

(Above) Looking from the balcony across the width of Building F on the ground floor. The outline of a studio unit can be seen to the corridor, and across outward through the opposite side of the structure. The bedroom/living and kitchen areas appear in the foreground.

(Above) Looking at the full floorplan of a ground-floor studio unit (G-06) toward the seaview. In the forground are the entrance (left) and bathroom (right), kitchen area, living/bedroom area and balcony.

(Above) View from the first floor balcony (one level above ground floor). Notice an exteneded sea view.

(Above) View to the right from the 1st floor of Building F at the foundation platform for building G. Notice the elevation and angle of the foundation, allowing for some sea views. Beyond Building G will be further construction of Phase 3 of Al Hamra resort including golf course lawns and villas.

(Above) View from the rear or parking lot side of Building F first floor , showing temporary workers' accommodations in the foreground, the bay and villas in the background.

(Above) Same view as above zoomed in on the villa development across the bay.

Welcome note: Read Al Hamra Village Marina's first post, On a Personal Note.

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On A Personal Note

I wonder who make up the club of Al Hamra Village Marina Apartment buyers. How many are non-GCC foreigners and how many are GCC or local? Among the foreigners, how many are UAE resident expats and how many are buying from abroad?

Another question is how buyers intend to use their properties--as full-time residences, part-time holiday retreats or sources of rental income? This relates to the question of why each person decided to buy. It would be interesting to read what others have to say.

  Al Hamra Fort Hotel grounds. What Marina apartment owners have to look forward to?

One more related question regards what each person expects of and plans for their new investment. Will it look like the brochures? Will they make use of the Marina, the golf club or other recreational facilities? How exclusive will the beach setting actually be?

Before sharing my own personal involvement with the Al Hamra Village Marina I invite readers to consider ways of enhancing the resort experience that life in the village promises. A thought to consider is how owners can work together to make their investment at once profitable, private and, as far as beach resorts go, pleasurable.

Why I Chose Al Hamra Village Marina

One direct cause was the appeal of a newspaper ad, offering resort-type property at what is for the UAE these days reasonable prices--starting at around Dhs 280,000 for a studio apartment. It seemed like a hard bargain to beat for a beachside residence.

This coincided to some extent with personal circumstances, whereby I needed to find a place to reside that would allow me to avoid the pitfalls of renting--e.g. high rates, limited availabitity and year-on-year rate increses from 15 to 50%. As for proximity to work and the fact that completion dates were a year or more away, Al Hamra was not a perfect choice. But it was the overwhelming allure of a beachside resort at an affordable price that made the ads so tantalizing.

So, if I could grab a unit before they all sold out, I would consider myself lucky. The Burj Al Arab made for an enticing venue for the launch, but I wondered if I could make it early enough to find anything that would suit both my budget and tastes. What I wanted was a beachside flat that I could call home for at least a year, before later using it as a holiday retreat.

  The Marina apartments coming up, 8 June 2006. From right buildings A, B, C, D and E.

I had heard about Al Hamra Village at least a year earlier but did not give it much thought. RAK was too far from Dubai or Abu Dhabi where I would most likely be employed. A nice place to visit perhaps, but too out-of-the way for a residence.

By mid-2006, however, I was ready to consider almost anything that would be affordable and would offer the chance to escape the rent hike nightmares. Even Nakheel's International City was starting to look attractive in that regard. But if one could get a place at a beach resort for the same as what he'd pay to live in the likes of International City, which could well turn out to be an over-crowded low-grade "ghetto," then Al Hamra seemed to be the way to go.