28 January 2013

The real estate firm’s compelling portfolio is attracting investors, homeowners and hotel guests

Abu Dhabi’s Tourism Development & Investment Company (TDIC) specialises in hotel, leisure and residential real estate. Established in 2006, TDIC is helping to fulfil the emirate’s ambition of becoming a global tourism hub. Its main developments are Saadiyat Island, a natural island close to Abu Dhabi city, and Desert Islands, a heritage-based tourism destination. It is also involved in cultural, retail, commercial and leisure projects across the emirate.


TDIC’s sole equity stakeholder is the Abu Dhabi Tourism and Culture Authority, the government body mandated to support the economic diversification of Abu Dhabi through tourism. TDIC works with both public and private sector partners, and has been awarded investment grade ratings of A1, AA and AA by credit rating agencies Moody’s, Standard & Poor’s and Fitch Ratings respectively. Properties are available for sale or lease from TDIC and customers are offered preferential mortgage rates with Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank.


TDIC’s project portfolio spans the redevelopment of urban landmark districts, new mixed-use complexes, downtown business and leisure resorts, and desert resorts. TDIC currently has several joint-venture agreements with contractors and developers in the UAE, as well as partnerships with some of the world’s leading culture, leisure and hospitality brands.

Saadiyat Island is a 27-square-kilometre natural island being developed with an environmentally sensitive philosophy. As well as hosting a residential community, Saadiyat will eventually offer a full complement of leisure, cultural and tourism facilities.

Its cultural district is expected to become an arts hub with high-profile, large-scale cultural institutions when completed. These facilities will include the Louvre Abu Dhabi museum, which is set to welcome its first visitors in 2015. The following year will see the opening of the Zayed National Museum, which has partnered with the British Museum to showcase the story of the UAE’s late founder and president, Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan al-Nahyan. In 2017, the Guggenheim Abu Dhabi, displaying modern and contemporary art, will launch.

Abu Dhabi hotel inventory 
Abu Dhabi emirateEstablishmentsRooms
5 star288,259
4 star204,480
3 star172,882
2 star7755
1 star9815
Total hotels8117,191
Total hotel apartments495,002
Total 13022,193
Abu Dhabi city10819,666
Al-Ain and Eastern region151,762
Western region7765
Grand total13022,193
Source: Abu Dhabi Tourism and Culture Authority

Saadiyat is also being pitched as a high-end residential development, with a mix of luxury villas, townhouses and apartments.

TDIC’s Desert Islands are an archipelago of eight natural islands, comprising Sir Bani Yas Island, Dalma Island and Discovery Islands, which will host resorts, conference facilities and an equestrian centre.

Upscale resorts delivered by TDIC in Abu Dhabi include the 176-room Westin Abu Dhabi Golf Resort and Spa in 2011 and the 222-room Eastern Mangroves Hotel and Spa by Anantara in 2012. The company has also launched several joint-venture hospitality projects in the city, including the Shangri-La Hotel at Qaryat al-Beri and the Rocco Forte Hotel Abu Dhabi.


The role of TDIC is to support the Abu Dhabi government’s Economic Vision 2030, its long-term road map for economic progress. By 2030, Abu Dhabi intends to have built a sustainable and diversified economy that is well integrated globally and provides more accessible and higher-value opportunities for citizens and residents. A key facet of this vision is the development of world-class and distinctive tourism and leisure facilities, as well as sought-after real estate, and this is where TDIC’s ambitions will be realised.

The company claims the key to its long-term success is delivering distinctive properties, facilities and destinations of ‘unparalleled quality’ that appeal to a wide range of customers and investors. Boasting an asset portfolio comprising some of the Gulf’s most ambitious infrastructure projects to date, TDIC says it continues to receive robust interest from big institutional investors and major global players.

Abu Dhabi tourism and hotel performance

  • Jan-Aug 2012, compared with the same period in 2011
  • 15 per cent increase in guests to 1,551,888
  • 10 per cent increase in guest nights to 4,393,820
  • 15 per cent increase in total number of rooms available to 5,171 million
  • 6 per cent increase in total number of rooms occupied to 3.232 million
  • 7 per cent decrease in occupancy levels to 63 per cent
  • 3 per cent increase in hotel revenue to AED2.80bn
  • 3 per cent decrease in room revenue
  • 8 per cent decrease in average room rate
  • 5 per cent decrease in average length of stay to 2.83 days
  • Two-star hotel occupancy rate: 71 per cent
  • Three-star hotel occupancy rate: 63 per cent
  • Four-star hotel occupancy rate: 60 per cent

Source: Abu Dhabi Tourism and Culture Authority

Company snapshot

Date established 2006

Main business sector Hospitality

Main business region UAE

Chairman Sheikh Sultan bin Tahnoon al-Nahyan

Managing director Mubarak Hamad al-Muhairi


Telephone (+971) 800 8342

TDIC in numbers

AED9bn: Portfolio of operating assets approximate value

AED2.1bn: Total residential sales in 2011

Source: Abu Dhabi Tourism and Culture Authority

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