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Wednesday, June 16, 2021

Will Qatar finally get its IKEA?

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Construction on Qatar’s long-awaited “Festival City” will commence next month, Al Futtaim Group and Qatar Islamic Bank has announced.

The QR6 billion project entertainment, retail, hospitality and commercial facility will be built in two phases and completed in 2014, Al Futtaim Group’s management said.

The first phase, which is slated for completion at the end of next year, will include Swedish furniture giant IKEA. Other anchor tenants include Toys R Us, Marks & Spencer and Intersport.

When completed, Doha Festival City will have a shopping center, an indoor-outdoor entertainment park, an automotive zone and two international hotels. It will ideally serve as a tourist destination for those living in the Gulf.

To facilitate this, Festival City will be located 15km north of downtown Doha on Al Shamal Road, at the end of which, the future “Friendship” bridge between Qatar and Bahrain will be located.

According to Gulf News:

With its strategic positioning, the mega complex is ideally equipped to meet the retail and entertainment needs of not only Qatar, but also the neighboring GCC countries. Also included are “green zones” to ensure space is dedicated to the community for all to use and enjoy.

Doha Festival City sounds amazing! But whether IKEA will really be here by the end of next year remains uncertain.

In an interview the Khaleej Times earlier this month, Steve Hammett, the president of Al-Futtaim’s retail group said he could not commit to any concrete dates. 

Without providing any specific date for new stores opening Hammett said, “I am not specific about the dates because of a little bit
 uncertainty in Cairo.”

“We are monitoring the situation and will see how things will turn in the next few months,” he added.

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