TOP Places to Buy Commercial Property in Abu Dhabi

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Whether you’re going to set up a business in Abu Dhabi or invest in commercial real estate, finding the right place to spend your money is crucial. Below, we’ve listed some of the most promising locations in Abu Dhabi, including top areas and specific developments, where you can purchase an office, a warehouse, a retail unit, a restaurant, or a commercial land plot. As each business has its unique requirements concerning the location, our list contains a brief description of the advantages each of the areas or developments has to offer for landlords or a business owner.

Benefits of investing in commercial real estate in Abu Dhabi

The range of commercial real estate in Abu Dhabi is vast and offers options to buy/rent properties from furnished offices to purpose-built factories. While real estate in general, is a valuable asset, there are several advantages to choosing commercial property over residential, namely:

  1. Commercial real estate has a limited supply with a high demand because many international companies need office space, warehouses, co-working spaces, and corporate apartments.
  2. A higher return on investment (ROI). The exact figures depend on various parameters, but on the whole, it’s not uncommon for commercial property to yield an ROI twice as high as residential property. That’s partly because of the lower per square foot capital cost.
  3. Quicker capital appreciation. The stronger the cash flow the property generates, the higher the value the asset becomes.
  4. Longer lease terms. While a typical residential lease in Abu Dhabi is for 1 year, a commercial lease is mostly for a period of 3-5 years or more, which protects the owner from possible downtime or negative market fluctuations.

Best places to buy commercial property in Abu Dhabi

The places listed below are located either in Abu Dhabi or in the vicinity of the city, but they are all within the borders of the emirate. According to the amendments made to the emirate’s Real Property Law in 2019, foreigners are now allowed to own freehold property in designated zones, including Saadiyat Island, Yas Island, Raha Beach, Al Reef, Reem Island, Masdar City, Al Maryah Island, Al Shamkha and around ten more areas.

Office spaces

One of the most popular types of commercial real estate are offices, since almost every company needs working space. Office space is divided into classes A — new buildings with an above-average rental price; B — spaces with a rental price in the medium range; C — older buildings in less good condition than the previous classes and in more remote areas.

No matter whether you want to purchase a few square feet of office space or a whole floor, you are most likely to find what you need in one of the towers on Al Reem Island. The residential neighbourhood Mohammed Bin Zayed City described below, also has quite a few options.

Sky Tower

The 292 m tall tower on Al Reem Island has 74 floors. Back in 2010, when the Sky Tower was unveiled, it used to be the emirate’s tallest skyscraper. The building is a mixed-use development, where both office and residential options can be found. The list of amenities includes 24-hour security and maintenance, a basketball court, a fitness club, and a gym, just to name just a few. At the moment there are office spaces for sale ranging in size from 1,594 to 23,015 sq.ft. at a price of AED 2.5M (USD 681K). Rentals in the building start from AED 120K (USD 33K) per year.

Addax Port Office Tower

This is a 68-floor commercial tower, also on Al Reem Island, and offers workspaces and meeting rooms of various layouts. The unparalleled views of the Arabian Gulf mean that employees will enjoy a refreshing working experience. Some of the amenities, from which the office owners will benefit, include three levels of car parking, a 24-hour security and concierge service, a swimming pool and gyms on the rooftop. At the moment there are  office spaces ranging from 1,527 to 3,897 sq.ft. For example, the purchase price for a 1,732 sq.ft. office will be AED 1.7M (USD 463K). As for rent, prices start from AED 65K (USD 18K) per year.

Tamouh Tower

Strategically positioned in a bustling part of Al Reem Island, the tower comprises 32 office floors and additional retail space on the ground floor. The facilities available include generous parking spaces both for owners and visitors, a gym, a basketball court, a tennis court, and even a nursery and a school, which can be convenient for business owners and employees with children. At the moment Tamouh Tower complex offers several office spaces available exclusively for rent. The offices range in size from 1,237 to 1,937 sq.ft. with prices starting from AED 132K (USD 36K) per year.

Mohammed Bin Zayed City

Mohammed Bin Zayed City (MBZ City) is a residential neighbourhood comprising a wide range of villas. While there aren’t as many offices on offer as in the towers listed above, a limited number of options are still available as it is a new district. For instance, you can find commercial property in the sub-community of Mohammed Bin Zayed Centre or in the Prestige Tower. Attached to the Capital Mall, the Prestige Tower includes individual offices and small corporate suites as well as a spacious executive office. The highlight of the business center is the landscaped indoor garden. Here you can buy a whole floor of 20,645 1,732 sq.ft. or rent individual office spaces from 1,050 to 18,137 sq.ft. with prices starting from AED 78K (21K) per year.

Coworking spaces

Recently, coworking spaces have been gaining in popularity among freelancers and aspiring entrepreneurs.The area of these spaces can range from 50 sq.ft. and above with prices depending entirely on the location of the building. On average, monthly rentals of such premises costs AED 700 (about USD 200). Some of the best places to rent are places like:

  • Al Odaid Office Tower on Airport Road which offers 50 to 1,000 sq.ft. of coworking space to rent, which costs AED 1,100 (USD 300) per month and AED 2,850 (USD 780) per month if you rent 1 office for two people.
  • World Trade Center – here the price of membership will be AED 900 (USD 245) a month for one person in the common area, or you can rent a virtual office for AED 600 (USD 165). A private office for each employee will cost AED 570 (USD 155) a month.

Shops and restaurants/cafés

Commercial property that can be used as a shop is a very valuable asset as no matter what happens in the economy as a whole, people will always have the need to buy goods on a daily or weekly basis. That means that such property will be more likely to generate a stable income regardless of the situation in other industries.

Abu Dhabi offers a wide range of options for the sale and lease of retail space. The area of a shop unit can vary dramatically. For instance, some of the smaller units available currently have an area of 350 to 500 sq.ft, while the most spacious options are over 16,000 sq.ft The most popular areas for renting retail space are Al Reem Island, as well as Hamdan Street and the Mussafah neighbourhood. Prices start from AED 35,000 per year when renting and from AED 350,000 when selling. Additionally, while looking for a retail unit or café to buy, you can also take into consideration locations such as Al Maryah Island and Al Mushrif.

Al Raha Beach

Al Raha Beach is a mixed commercial, residential and leisure area. Like Corniche Road, the close proximity to the beach gives this place a strategic advantage. The location benefits from easy access to Abu Dhabi International Airport and is close to Khalifa City and Yas Island. Some of the places that you might consider when looking for a shop or a restaurant to buy are Al Raha Lofts and Khor Al Raha.

Al Reem Island

As Al Reem Island is a busy area, you can expect impressive foot traffic here, no matter whether you opt for commercial property in Addax Port Office Tower, Sky Tower, Tamouh Tower or another building. For example, The Oceanscape complex on Al Reem Island offers the option of renting a retail store for AED 35K (USD 10K), while the purchase price would cost AED 400K (USD 110K) for 400 sq.ft.

Warehouses

As the population of Abu Dhabi grows, so are the number of companies operating in the emirate. A considerable part of them needs warehouse spaces to store their products, thus creating a stable flow of potential tenants.

Mussafah

Mussafah is known as one of the UAE’s key economic areas. This is an industrial district and a satellite town located 20 kilometers southeast of the center of Abu Dhabi City. The area was developed as a special economic zone with multiple factories and the port facility provides for cargo operations and warehousing.

Taking this into consideration, it’s hardly surprising that Mussafah is probably the best-known location for purchasing a warehouse. Some of the reasons for choosing this district are the strong infrastructure, numerous entry points, close proximity to other businesses, and not to mention easy access to ports and airports. Warehouses typically range from 10,000 sq.ft. to 75,800 sq.ft. with prices starting from AED 7.5M (USD 2,04M). Larger warehouses covering an area of over 200,000 sq.ft. can also be found here, as well as office spaces available in Mussafah.

Commercial land plots

What makes land plots stand out among other types of commercial properties is that they give you far more freedom to do what you want and, provides you with a chance to maximize your gains by choosing the most efficient layout and design for the future building. While the final choice of the location depends on the purpose of the commercial land, we can suggest a few options to consider.

Alreeman in Al Shamkha

This is a new investment zone where land plots can be purchased by buyers of all nationalities. The area is located close to Khalifa Port, Abu Dhabi Airport, Masdar City and Yas Island. Land plots on offer range from 6,000 sq.ft. to over 75,000 sq.ft. and cost from AED 1.15M (USD 320K) to AED 8.3M (USD 2.26M) respectively.

Rawdhat

This is a modern development covering 28 hectares and housing a number of low and mid-rise residential and commercial buildings. Rawdhat is part of Abu Dhabi Island and is located next to Sheikh Rashid Bin Saeed Street. Land plots from 109,000 to 200,000 sq.ft. are available with prices ranging from 23M (USD 6.27M) to 46M (USD 12.6M).

Khalifa City

The residential suburb was originally divided into three areas: Khalifa City A (later renamed Khalifa City), Khalifa City B (Shakhbout City), and New Khalifa City (Zayed City). Khalifa City A, which is 25 kilometers away from Abu Dhabi, borders on Abu Dhabi International Airport and is close to Yas Island. Shakhbout City is located further inland, not far from Bani Yas and Al Shawamekh. Zayed City is a new development, which means that there is a comparatively wide range of commercial plots to choose from. Plots in Khalifa City range from 8,800 sq.ft. to 90,000 sq. ft. and cost anywhere between 2.2M (USD 600K) and 19M (USD 5.13M).

Al Maryah Island

Lying northeast of Abu Dhabi, Al Maryah Island is a natural island housing mixed-use developments. Al Maryah is one of the city’s most prominent construction sites with some of the largest buildings in the area like Al Sila Tower, Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange, Cleveland Clinic Abu Dhabi and the Galleria Mall. Abu Dhabi Global Market (ADGM) is located on Al Maryah Island. ADGM is an international financial center and a free zone, which has been known as an attractive jurisdiction for some types of companies.

Yas Island

Home to popular tourist attractions such as Ferrari World, Yas Waterworld, Warner Bros. World, and SeaWorld Abu Dhabi, Yas Island offers impressive long-term potential. Land plots available for purchase are few and far between, however anyone interested in buying plots would look to pay prices from AED 17M (USD 4,6M) for a plot covering 27,000 sq.ft.

Al Reem Island

Prices vary dramatically depending on the location and the area, not to mention other factors. To give an idea of how much real estate property on Al Reem Island costs, we can list some typical offers: a waterfront plot (mixed-use permit) covering an area of 20,585 sq.ft. is selling for AED 19M (USD 5.18M); a prime-area hotel plot of 21,468 sq..ft. is AED 35M (USD 9.53M) and a plot covering 135,613 sq.ft. is available for AED 30M (USD 8.17M).

Summary

  1. When it comes to commercial properties on offer in Abu Dhabi, the choice is limited, in comparison with residential property types.
  2. The majority of units available in the commercial real estate segment are offices and warehouses as well as land plots, while other types of property are relatively few in numbers.
  3. The largest amount of office space is located on Al Reem Island, while warehouses are concentrated in the industrial area of Mussafah.
  4. If you’re looking for a commercial land plot, you are more likely to find the right option in areas such as Al Reem Island, Yas Island, Al Reeman in Al Shamkha, and Khalifa City.

Has this list helped you get the overall idea of what Abu Dhabi has to offer in terms of commercial properties? If yes, now you’re ready to turn to our catalogue and get a closer look at the options currently available to buy or rent commercial real estate in Abu Dhabi.

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