Work to Commence in Dubai’s World Islands

A property developer has started work on a large resort complex, the first big project to start in the man-made archipelago off Dubai’s coast.

Kleindienst, a Dubai-based international developer, will begin work on the “Heart of Europe” project, a complex of luxury hotels and villas encompassing six small islands. The project is scheduled for completion at the end of 2016, Reuters reports.

Located in the Gulf, approximately five kilometers (3.1 miles) off mainland Dubai, the 60-square-kilometer World Islands is an archipelago made up of more than 200 islands in the shape of a world map. It was completed in 2008 but remained undeveloped since the financial crisis until recently.
The Heart of Europe could encourage other developers to begin work on more islands, analysts say.

Last May, Kleindienst resolved a disagreement with state-owned firm Nakheel, the World’s developer, by paying $169 million, Reuters reports.

The project will feature classic German, Spanish and Italian architecture. The project’s cost or funding source were not revealed, but local press have estimated the cost at more than $800 million.