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Katara Hospitality

Rendering of new aqua park for Qetaifan Island North

A new luxury resort with a water park and four-star hotel will be built on an island off the coast of Lusail, Katara Hospitality announced this week.

The triangular Qetaifan Island North is expected to attract both tourists and residents.

The first phase of the project – the aqua park and 400-room hotel – should be completed by spring 2022, the state-funded hospitality group said.

Katara Hospitality

Rendering of development on Qetaifa Island North

Renderings of the resort show multiple pools with water slides, all set in landscaped grounds and adjacent to a series of beaches.

Leading off that is a pier extending out to another smaller island, and little trains appear to run the length of the connection.

The project is the first new tourist development to be announced since Qatar Tourism Authority (QTA) said last week that it will be ramping up efforts to attract 5.6 million visitors to the country by 2023.

More visitors

The resort will be developed and managed by a new company, Qetaifan Projects, which is a QR11 billion subsidiary of Katara Hospitality.

Meanwhile, project management consultants Atkins will design the masterplan, infrastructure and components of phase one.


Photo for illustrative purposes only.

A shopping plaza, park, souq, mixed-use retail complex and staff accommodation are all planned for the second stage of the island’s development.

Katara Hospitality has not yet given an opening date for this phase.

Second island

The development will be one of two adjacent islands off the coast of Lusail city.

Qetaifan Island South is being run by Lusail Real Estate Development Company and will feature luxury villas.

In March 2014, 50 plots were sold to developers, while a year later a further 35 plots villas were snapped up in a public offering.

Lusail Real Estate Development Company

Qetaifan Island bridge

According to Lusail’s website, this island promises “exclusive property” with communal areas, dune-grassed landscaping with boardwalks as well as pools and spas.

Both islands will be connected to the mainland by “iconic” hanging bridges, Katara Hospitality said.

Previous plans have shown a cluster of four islands, however the latest announcement mentions only two.

Lusail ‘extension’

The new island is the latest development for Katara Hospitality. It plans to expand its current portfolio of 42 hotels in a dozen countries, to 60 properties by 2026.

Construction is underway on another key landmark project by Katara Hospitality in the new city – Katara Towers, which are expected to be complete by 2020.

Kling Consult

The Katara Towers at Lusail

When complete, it will house two hotels, luxury apartments, restaurants and entertainment and recreation facilities.

The hotel owner/operator has billed the north island development as a “key element of Lusail City’s expansion.”

Ambitious plans for Lusail include attracting 200,000 people to live there by 2022. However, much of the new city is still under construction.

In addition to hosting Qatar’s centerpiece World Cup stadium, the city will have multiple hotels and upscale shopping malls as well as residential complexes and business towers.

Additionally, a light rail network is being built, which will ultimately have four mainlines covering 33km.

The first line – yellow – is expected to start operating in January 2019, with the rest following by 2020, according to the joint venture QDVC.

Other resorts

This is not the first time developers have proposed plans for new island resorts off Qatar’s coast.

Penny Yi Wang

Oryx Island

In May 2013, Barwa Real Estate announced the $5.5 billion Oryx Island, which would feature a water park, villas with private beaches and five floating hotels, to be used during the 2022 World Cup.

The manmade island would have been built using excavated material from the construction of the Doha Metro, Barwa officials said at the time.

However, just a year later those plans have already been shelved.

Al Bandary Real Estate

Amwaj suites and residences

Meanwhile, in Lusail itself, Bandary Real Estate announced in 2015 it would be building a different water park, called Amwaj (“waves”), which has multiple pools next to two linked residential towers.


Kling Consult

The Katara Towers at Lusail

Construction on the swooping structure of a twin-towers project in Lusail Marina is expected to start soon, with the launch this week of tenders for a main contractor.

Katara Hospitality opened the application process for a contractor to build the 36-story, crossed-swords design Katara Towers.

The towers’ curves are inspired by the crossed swords of the seal of Qatar, and were designed by German civil engineering and design firm King Consult.


Qatar Emblem

When complete, the complex will house two hotels, luxury apartments, restaurants and entertainment and recreation facilities, according to the notice on its website and in local media this week.

Katara Hospitality first launched the towers project in May 2012, and at that time aimed to finish by 2016.

At the time, the total budget for the project, covering a 300,000 sq m area, was QR2.2 billion.

Since then, progress on the project has been stop-start, and subsequent deadlines have come and gone.

Enabling and piling works got underway in late 2013, and in December 2014, Katara Hospitality tendered for subcontracting and basement works packages.

According to its website, the towers are now scheduled to open in 2020.

Contractor search

The state-funded hospitality group said it is currently looking for a Qatar-based contractor, or a joint venture with local official representation.

They will be tasked with building the above-ground structure and facade and to handle the MEP works.

The successful bidder will also be appointed as main contractor for the rest of the works to the project until it is finished, the notice states.

Katara Hospitality

Tender notice in newspapers for Katara Towers’ main contractor

Eligible bidders should have done at least three similar projects in the last six years, each valued at QR2 billion or higher.

They must also show experience in constructing projects of a “similar size, character and complexity” in the Gulf or MENA region in the last five years, the notice said.

The deadline to apply is Oct. 15.

What to expect

Once completed, the towers will be among Lusail City’s landmark buildings.

It is located in the marina district, which is still under construction. It is already home to the multi-colored Marina Twin Towers, among other buildings.

Damon McDonald/Flickr

Lusail’s Twin Towers

According to the latest tender notice, Katara Towers will house two hotels – a “luxurious premium” hotel for business travelers, and a “five-star deluxe hotel.”

There will also be permanent apartments as well as “a variety of suites, restaurants and state-of-art entertainment and recreation facilities.”

Previously, an artificial beach island was planned, to be linked to the towers’ promenade by bridges.

It was slated to host aquatic sports, restaurants and contain water parks, Katara Hospitality previously said.

However, there was no mention of the beach island in the latest notice.

New city

Some 20km to the north of Doha, Lusail is being built from what was empty desert.

The aim is to eventually house nearly 200,000 people by 2022, and half-a-million residents when it is fully complete.


Lusail City rendering

At that time, visitors to the “city of the future” will be able to get around via light rail, water taxi or through a cycle and pedestrian network.

Construction on the marina district has been underway for years, and a number of towers and other projects are already complete, although progress in some parts has been slow.

Lusail will also be home to Qatar’s showpiece stadium when it hosts the World Cup in 2022.

A Qatari-Chinese JV was announced late last year as the main stadium contractor. But the design for the arena – being undertaken by British architectural firm Fosters + Partners – has yet to be publicly revealed.

Among the stops on the light-rail is Place Vendôme. The QR4.6 billion mixed-use, Parisian-inspired development will have a shopping center with up to 500 retail outlets in a 1 million square meter area.

United Developers

Place Vendôme – Lusail

Scheduled to be finished next year, it will include a a hypermarket, entertainment zones, restaurants and two five-star luxury hotels and serviced apartments.


Photo for illustrative purposes only.


Photo for illustrative purposes only.

Work is finally moving forward on Qatar’s flagship World Cup stadium, with organizers naming the main contractor yesterday.

The Lusail Stadium will be built by a joint venture between Qatari firm HBK Contracting Co. (HBK) and China Railway Construction Corp. (CRCC).

The venue is expected to be completed in 2020 and will host the opening and final matches of the 2022 World Cup.

Lusail Stadium rendering, as submitted by Qatar during bid process.

Qatar 2022 Bid Committee

Lusail Stadium rendering, as submitted by Qatar during bid process.

The committee invited contractors to bid on the stadium in May, asking for work to begin this December.

At the time, it set a maximum bid price of QR2.8 billion (US$769 million). No finalized contract amount has been announced.


British architectural firm Fosters + Partners has been working on the design of the venue, which organizers said was completed earlier this year.

It will be revealed in early 2017, the Supreme Committee of Delivery and Legacy (SCDL) added.

In a statement, Secretary General Hassan Al Thawadi said:

“Lusail Stadium will be the center-piece of our tournament in 2022, and post tournament will become an integral part of the community in Lusail City in the legacy phase.

We look forward to revealing the Qatari-inspired design and detailed legacy plans to the people in Qatar and football fans across the world next year.”

The open-air stadium will be Qatar’s largest, and is expected to seat some 80,000 football fans during the tournament.

It will feature cooling technology like the other seven venues.

The SCDL said that Marafeq has been awarded the cooling agreement for Lusail Stadium, and will provide some 30,000 tons of refrigeration before and during the World Cup.

Lusail City

The under-construction Lusail City is located some 20km north of Doha.

According to the SCDL, the 19-district development will be home to more than 200,000 residents by 2022.

When completed, visitors to the “city of the future” will be able to get around via light rail, water taxi or through a cycle and pedestrian network.

Lusail City rendering


Lusail City rendering

Before then, Qatar is working hard on getting its World Cup stadiums ready.

So far, five tournament venues are under construction: Al Rayyan, Khalifa International, Al Wakrah, Al Bayt Al Khor and Qatar Foundation.

Three more stadiums including Lusail, Ras Abu Aboud and Al Thumama are still in the preliminary stages.

But World Cup organizers said they plan to be “managing eight live construction sites by mid-2017.”