The resort will feature a five-star hotel consisting of several interconnected towers, with about 360 rooms, banqueting facilities and 105 chalets containing one to three bedrooms.

It will also have a large waterfront with a marina, beach club, spa, shops, restaurants, canals and waterways. The existing channel will be extended to approximately five times its current size. The US’ JW Marriott will operate the hotel.

The other bidders for the contract were the local Arabtec Construction and the local/Lebanese Arabian Construction Company.

The local Abu Dhabi National Hotels is the client. The UK’s Mace International is the project manager (MEED 6:7:07).

The project is Al-Habtoor’s second hotel project in recent weeks. With its joint venture partner South Africa’s Murray & Roberts Contractors (Middle East), it is the frontrunner for the Trump International Hotel and Tower on the Palm Jumeirah in Dubai.

The joint venture has been selected as the preferred bidder by the client, Nakheel, ahead of the other bidder, the local/Australian Nasa Multiplex (MEED 2:11:07).

In September, Australia’s Leighton Holdings acquired a 45 per cent stake in Al-Habtoor.

The deal resulted in the Australian contractor merging its operations in the Gulf with Al-Habtoor.