New multi-$billion tourist scheme brings Ferrari to the UAE.

Author:Veseley, Milan
Position:BUSINESS & FINANCE - United Arab Emirates

THE UNITED ARAB Emirates are increasingly the new frontier for energy, financial and tourism investments. As befits their rising status as a newly-discovered tourist destination, the emirates are now partnering with top brand names to introduce revolutionary concepts that are raising eyebrows in the world's tourism industry, their pioneering developments steering the industry into the hi-tech, electronically-based leisure sector previously dominated by American companies such as the world-renowned Disney corporation.

Leading the emirates' charge is Abu Dhabi and its wealthy business families, its gilt-edged tourism projects firmly targeted on the future when Abu Dhabi's hydrocarbon resources will begin to run out. Among the most prestigious of these visionary developments is Yas Island, a 2,500-hectare natural island in the Gulf situated opposite the Iranian coastline. In choosing Ferrari S.p.a. to headline its $40bn transformation of this previously desolate island into a luxury tourist destination, ALDAR Properties PJSC, a real estate development company owned by Abu Dhabi's ruling Al Nahyan family, is pioneering a whole new concept in luxury tourism. By bringing a multi-millionaire's 'reality' to the not-quite-so-rich tourist it is bringing an exciting but as yet untried tourism idea to fruition, one with unlimited potential. As such its hi-tech motor-sport theme park named 'Ferrari World' will allow family tourists to experience the thrill of Formula 1 via sophisticated simulators and other electronic racing attractions; all this due to the Mubadala Development Company--a wholly-owned investment vehicle of the emirate of Abu Dhabi--purchasing a 5% stake in the world-renowned Ferrari Company of Maranello, Italy.

"Mubadala's purchase of the Ferrari shares earlier this year allowed ALDAR--the property development arm of Mubadala--an opportunity to forge a relationship with one of the world's leading brands," ALDAR Chairman Ahmed Ali Al Sayegh said. Expanding on the partnership he confirmed that ALDAR was "delighted that this opportunity has swiftly progressed into an exclusive agreement which has arisen from the natural synergy of ideologies and objectives between the Ferrari brand and the ALDAR property company."

When complete in 2009 the Ferrari World theme park will introduce some revolutionary attractions. Planned to provide entertainment for the whole family rather then to wealthy adults alone, Ferrari World's extensive range of 24...

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