Edamah prepares to start first buildings at Bilaj Aljazayer

10 October 2021
The tourism development on the southwest coast of Bahrain will create a beach town with boutique hotels and apartment buildings

Bahrain Real Estate Investment Company (Edamah) is preparing to start work on the phase one buildings for its Bilaj Aljazayer development on Bahrain’s southwest coast.

The first buildings are two boutique hotels that Edamah will develop as part of a much larger masterplan prepared for the area over the past three years.

“The project really kicked off in 2018, and in 2019 we signed with Foster & Partners. They have worked very closely with us putting together a masterplan that will create a new destination for Bahrain,” said Amin al-Arrayed, CEO of Edamah, in an interview with MEED.

“The idea is not to have something that is short term, but rather something that would take us forward for the next 15 years. We are talking about a beach town that is a 3-kilometre by 1km plot that has been broken into three phases.”

Super plots

The development is split into five super plots made up of individual sites for four or five hotels, or three hotels and two apartment buildings. Each super plot covers an area of 15,000 to 20,000 square metres.

Edamah is developing the first super plot itself and signed a deal with Minor Hotels to manage the two hotels in August this year. The Avani and Tivoli hotels will each have 110 keys and are scheduled to open in 2024. They will be located along the main boulevard of Bilaj Aljazayer on the waterfront.

“The construction should commence as soon as the designs are complete, and we will need probably another six months for that. We then have to go through a tender process for the construction, so 2024 is probably when you’re going to see the hotels completed,” said Al-Arrayed.

US-headquartered WATG is the designer of the hotels.

The rest of the first super plot being developed by Edamah will comprise apartment buildings.

“In addition to the hotels, we are looking at filling out the rest of the super plot with some nice apartments,” said Al-Arrayed.

For the other plots, Edamah plans to work with third-party developers.

"We will also at some point be inviting investors to participate in the masterplan. They have strict design guidelines to maintain the quality levels that we feel need to be maintained, but we will be looking for third-party involvement in the project,” said Al-Arrayed.

Preliminary work for the project has already been completed.

“We have worked hard to upgrade the beach. The beach is the star of the show. It is a beach project, and the beach today is a swimming beach. We have removed a lot of the rock and debris that was on the beach that made it difficult for people to swim," said Al-Arrayed.

“We have brought in some nice amenities. Restaurants and cafés have opened up recently, and we have also upgraded the facilities, such as the toilets, and introduced other value-add items like sunbeds.”

An Olympic-sized seawater swimming pool has also been installed at the beach by the Bahrain Olympic Committee.

For access to the site, work has been completed on the south loop highway scheme funded by the Saudi Development Fund and managed by the Ministry of Works.

The road links the Gulf of Bahrain Road with the Al-Sahel development to the south of Bilaj Aljazayer. The works were split into two contracts with the local Nass Contracting Company securing a BD13m ($35m) order, and another local firm, Haji Hassan Group, winning a BD12m contract.

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