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French Version

Rusd Bank to build massive Marina City (Daily Star)

Rusd Bank, a leading regional investment bank, announced Tuesday the initiation of what it bills as the region's largest luxury project.

Marina City, with a capital of $190 million, is one of Lebanon's most important real estate development projects.

The bank, which was established in Malaysia, will introduce 1,169,230 shares at a share price of $100 each. Subscriptions will close at the end of September or when target shares have been met.

The Marina City project will be built on 81,000 square meters, across the Metn coastline, north of Beirut. It will include a residential complex of 150 units and 170 furnished apartments, as well as a complex of 200 public timeshare units and a 270-room hotel with a banquet hall capacity of 1,000 people.

The 74,000 square meter project will also include a three-level shopping mall overlooking the marina, which will be able to hold up to 700 yachts and is set to bring in 32 percent annually to investors.

The company says the venture is the only one in Lebanon to offer timeshare rooms on a total of 60,000 square meters.

Marina Joseph Khoury Beirut is the largest marina in the Middle East and will be the main platform for the project.

Project units are attracting international hotel and timeshare companies, many of which have already invested in the project, according to Rusd Bank. Bank officials expect the entire project to be sold out within the first four years of completion.

The minimum shareholding will be set at $2,500 per share for individuals and $1 million for institutions.

The venture answers the increase in demand for real estate properties in Beirut, particularly in hotels and leisure facilities, and could boost Beirut's efforts to regain its position as one of the most important cities in the Middle East.

Arab investors have already shown a growing interest in Lebanon after the completion of major projects such as the rebuilding of downtown Beirut.

Saleh Jamil Malaekah, chairman of the board of directors of Rusd Bank, said the Marina City project is the largest real estate investment project in Beirut, with a total constructed area of 344,000 square meters.

The shopping center that forms part of the Marina City project will be a future shopping area of Beirut, with a total of 74,000 square meters. The center is comprised of three levels and includes a number of leisure and service facilities that overlook the Joseph Khoury Marina and the beach area.

The project also contains a number of restaurants, cafeterias, three of the most well-known department stores in Lebanon, a cinema complex with more than 12 cinema halls and a number of fast food kiosks. The shopping center will also house stores of the most well-known international brands and trademarks, information center and internal and external playgrounds for children.

Marina City's garage will hold 2,700 cars.

In order to ensure the success of the tourist aspect of the project, it is strategically located in Dbayyeh, a luxurious area in Beirut, where 18 percent of the wealthiest Lebanese families reside. According to the International Tourism Organization, tourism in Beirut is growing at the rate of 8 percent per year. The project is a unique addition to the huge projects that have recently appeared in Beirut within the last few years and is the last of the projects to be carried out on Beirut coastline in a luxurious modern design.

Beirut 21-09-2004
The Daily Star

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