Dubai Buildings That Have Stood The Test Of Time

Established on December 2nd, 1971, the United Arab Emirates is still considered a relatively young country. In just 45 years, the UAE, and the city of Dubai has become an international symbol for growth, prosperity and success in all sectors. We take a look back at some of the most important Dubai buildings, and iconic landmarks that have stood the test of time.

The First Monument – Deira Clock Tower

daira clock towerThe Deira Clock Tower was constructed in the year 1963, before the UAE was even established. Initially called the Dubai Clock Tower, this structure was built to celebrate one of the nation’s first international oil exports, which occurred in 1962. This monument is located at the mid-point between Deira and BurDubai, which is an essential route in the Emirate. Today, The Telegraph listed the Deira Clock Tower as one of 17 most beautiful clock towers around the world, and it is considered as a major landmark of this thriving Emirate.

The First Residential Tower – The Toyota Building

Toyota Tower

Situated in one of the busiest interchanges of the city, the Toyota building on Sheikh Zayed road was one of the first residential Duabi buildings built in the year 1973. The actual name of the 15-storey development is Nasir Rashid Lootah Building. It gets its famous nickname from the large Toyota neon sign that is found on top of the tower. Currently, this Dubai building is 90% occupied because of its popularity with Dubai residents, and also being the most affordable Dubai real estate in the area.

The First Skyscraper – World Trade Centre

world trade center

Established in 1979, the Dubai World Trade Centre was the city’s first skyscraper in the region and brought about the inception of Dubai property sector on the global stage. This 39-storey tower, which is also featured on the UAE currency, was first called the Sheikh Rashid Tower, and it was built to introduce trade and commerce in the country. Now, the Dubai World Trade Centre hosts all kinds of global exhibitions, seminars and events which attracts thousands of international businesses and visitors every year.

The First Shopping Mall – Al Ghurair Centre

Al Ghurair Centre

Dubai is famous for its many large and grand shopping malls, but the first ever shopping complex was developed by the Al Ghurair Group in the year 1981. Al Ghurair centre was the first mall in the entire gulf region. Located in Al Rigga in Deira, Al Ghurair Centre was the one-stop shop for all international brands, the top restaurants, and different entertainment options for Dubai residents in the 80’s. Nowadays, even with a large variety of malls in the city, Al Ghurair Centre still remains as a fan-favorite Dubai building for residents in Deira and Old Dubai.

A Closer Look At City Walk Dubai

City Walk Dubai was the first kind of outdoor lifestyle destination launched in late 2013, and by this October 2017, this urban district will be four years old. Since it’s inception, Dubai City Walk has two constructed phases, over 150 different outlets, and over 20 residential buildings and stylish City Walk apartments. Developed by Meraas, City Walk is quickly becoming the next biggest social hotspot and one of the main tourist attractions of Dubai. With stylish architecture, a chic layout and a premium location in the heart of Dubai, City Walk Dubai is now the ideal choice to live for Dubai residents.
We took a closer look at City Walk Dubai and everything that it has to offer.

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Currently, Driven Properties works with five buildings and help to provide modern, stylish and sleek City Walk apartments for rent and sale. With so many shopping, dining, recreational options, and more coming soon, City Walk is the ultimate Dubai destination for everyone.


Upcoming Dubai Luxury Off Plan Properties – Part 1

As we get closer to the World Expo 2020, Dubai developers are announcing several luxury off Plan projects that are attracting all kinds of investors and end users. Some projects are more anticipated than others and we have counted some of our personal favorite Dubai luxury off plan projects, and the reasons why we look forward to their completion.

IL Primo, Downtown Dubai

IL Primo Dubai


Developed by the renowned Emaar Properties, IL Primo Dubai is a high-end development that will be considered the epitome of upscale living, with its fully furnished units, fashionable fittings, spacious balconies and state-of-the-art appliances in every apartment.


Located in the stylish Opera District of Dubai, each apartment will have unobstructed views of the entire Downtown Dubai including the Burj Khalifa, Emaar Boulevard, the Opera House and also full views of the Dubai Fountains.

What’s special?

Not only will it feature incredible views, but the 4 and 5 bedrooms in IL Primo Dubai will have massive layouts. The 4 bedrooms will range between 5,253 square feet to 5,383 square feet while the 5 bedroom options will be a surprising 11,550 square feet.

Completion date?

Slated for around September 2020, this project will be one of the highlighted property projects gearing up to the Expo 2020.

Bluewaters Island, JBR

bluewaters island


From renowned Dubai luxury off plan Developers City Walk, Box Park and JBR Beach, comes Bluewaters Island, an artificial island created by Meraas. It is more than just a simple off plan development, Bluewaters Island aims to be one of the biggest tourist spots in the city by offering residential options, a shopping complex, two deluxe hotels, a beach club, and several other world class amenities.


This project will be located off the coast of Jumeirah Beach Residence, on the shores of Dubai. It will offer fantastic views of JBR Beach, and the different residential complexes in that area.

What’s so special?

This will be Meraas’s first artificial island development, which is also set to become the city’s biggest tourist spot. This development will consist of a special attraction, the Dubai Ain, which is the largest observation Ferris wheel in the world ranging up to 210 meters in length, and overlooking all of Dubai.

Completion Date?

The construction for Bluewaters Island is well on its way, and it’s set to be complete during Q3 of 2018.

The Heart of Europe Dubai, The World Islands

the heart of europe


The Heart of Europe Dubai is a cluster of six islands in the World Islands Dubai. It is based on destinations across Europe, named after the countries of St. Petersburg, Switzerland, Sweden, Monaco, Germany and Main Europe. Each Island has its own unique design and captures a different European country’s ambiance, culture and character.


Developed by Klendienst Group a prominent luxury off plan projects developer, The Heart of Europe Dubai will be spanning over six islands and it will all be located within the ambitious World Islands district. The Heart of Europe will feature more than residential units, it will consist of luxury 6 & 7-star hotels, an underwater heritage museum, a vacation resort, and other world-class amenities.

What’s special?

The Heart of Europe Dubai features some of the most advanced and innovative homes with their exquisite design and incredible layout. Residents will be able to live in gorgeous homes that will overlook private beaches. The Heart of Europe Dubai also guarantees an 8% ROI per year for 10 years. In addition, investors don’t have to pay management fees, service fees or even DEWA fees.

Completion date?

This anticipated project is set to be completed by late 2017 to early 2018.

XXII CARAT at Palm Jumeirah



XXII CARAT is a residential Dubai off plan project developed by Forum Group. It is a unique collection of beachfront villas.


XXII CARAT Palm Jumeirah offers exclusive 22 high-end villas, and private mansions in one of the world’s most sought out destinations. On the spectacular crescent of the iconic Palm Jumeirah, this Dubai project features luxurious beachfront living with outstanding amenities.

What’s special?

XXII CARAT at Palm Jumeirah will be regarded as one of the most upscale and high-end projects being developed at the Palm Jumeirah. With smart automation systems, private beaches, exclusive services and close proximity to some hotels like The One & Only The Palm, The Waldrof Astoria, Fairmont the Palm, and Jumeirah Zabeel Saray, residents investing in this area will be living in one of the richest areas of Dubai.

Completion date?

This Dubai luxury off plan project will be scheduled for handover by the end quarter of 2017.

The Driven Experts: Our favorite Dubai commercial property areas


It’s no surprise that over the years, Dubai has quickly grown into one of the leading international hubs for all kinds of businesses. According to the National, just in the year 2015, Dubai’s top commercial property areas held over 22,000 SME’s. Every day Dubai establishes several types of new foreign and local companies, enterprises, corporations and startups in this vibrant growing business center

The location is one of the key elements when it comes to setting up any kind of business in Dubai. We sat down with our director of retail and office specialist agent, Saad Bin Zain, to talk about his top 4 favorite commercial property areas that are perfect to start a business.

 1. Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC):                                                                                                


Established for over 12 years, DIFC has achieved its vision of being the financial capital of the UAE. Currently, DIFC has over 1500 businesses with the Gate District alone occupying around 95% of retail and office space. DIFC is also introducing a new project that will deal exclusively with retail and residential areas. The Gate Avenue will be connecting the Gate District to the Burj Khalifa, with an estimated of 660,000 sq. ft. of buildup area (BUA) for at least 150 retail outlets, residential units, and other community features. Saad predicts that with the completion of the Gate Avenue, DIFC will become the hottest commercial property in the market.

2. Dubai Design District (D3):

pic20283_lwWith its inception in 2013, by his highness Sheikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Makhtoum, and its official launch in April 2015, Dubai Design District has become the ultimate space for the concept artist, the visual genius, and the designing guru. “D3 offers an edge higher than an average business district,” states Saad Bin Zain when talking about this innovative and dynamic sector. D3 was created for the sole purpose of promoting local and international industries of art, fashion, and design, which makes this the perfect environment for Dubai’s creative community. With the first phase already running, D3’s vision is to complete all three of their phases before Expo 2020. Major corporations, SME’s and startups would take full advantage of this unique and artistic part of Dubai real estate market.


3. Dubai World Trade Central (DWTC):dubai-world-trade-centre-landscape

In the year 1979, Dubai built the very first major business tower where they would establish international trade and commerce. This gave birth to Dubai’s oldest business sector, Dubai World Trade Centre – one of the first Dubai commercial property areas. DWTC is the symbol of reliability and the resilience when it comes to the business market. Today DWTC provides worldwide events and exhibitions on some of the best upcoming businesses, industries and enterprises on a global scale.



4. Downtown Dubai:

stannlewiss-twitterTermed as ‘The Centre of Now’ and being the ultimate tourist center with the Dubai Mall, the Burj Khalifa and several luxury hotels, world famous brands and top restaurants and retail stores all within one location. “This area is perfect for new businesses and upcoming Dubai properties” suggests Saad Bin Zain. Downtown has a wonderful mixture of residential and commercial property units which offers a unique blend of communities, making it ideal for new businesses. With the newest addition of the UAE’s first opera house, Dubai Opera will gain an international audience with world-renowned shows, performances, and theater.


Not only does this serve as being the absolute center of Dubai, Downtown Dubai also provides quick access to all of the above major commercial property areas and other business districts that Dubai has to offer.


With these areas and a lot more, Dubai offers new opportunities every day, for any individual who would like to start their business or enterprise.

For more information on retail and office space in Dubai’s current or upcoming commercial property projects, you can contact our retail & office director Saad Bin Zain or any other of our Driven’s top agents for all of your Dubai property needs.

5 reasons why Birmingham is the next London

Central Birmingham and the Bullring at night

When you mention the United Kingdom, London is usually the first city that comes to mind. But over the years, the city of Birmingham is quickly becoming the contender for Britain’s next top metropolitan city. Both The New York Times and New York Magazine recommended their readers to visit Birmingham instead of London” and a survey by PwC revealed that Birmingham was among the top 10 European cities for investment. Nobel Prize winner Malala Yousufzai even stated that “Birmingham is the heart of England”. With the United Kingdom’s second largest city in focus, we find out what factors makes Birmingham the next London.


1.The Ambitious Projectsnew-stmetro-ez

The midlands city is currently working on redevelopment and regeneration programs in various sectors, most notably the real estate sector that will further boost the city’s already strengthened economy. Birmingham’s ‘Big City’ and development plan are bold expansion projects that will make it the world’s next city center and are due for completion by 2031. The project is set to create better city environment for its 4.3 million workers and residents. Furthermore, the city is also introducing enterprise and economic zones within various parts of the region, which will take advantage of Birmingham’s central location. By the year 2031, the city will be known as the next global, business and financial hub. UK developers SevenCapital, are taking advantage of the rise in Birmingham economy by introducing Albion House, a new phase of St.George’s Urban Village.

2a49f74600000578-3151619-six_hsbc_staff_have_been_sacked_after_filming_themselves_staging-m-4_14362658476272. The Job Opportunities

Due to the new development plans and the introduction of business zones within the city, there is a possibility of around 50,000 new jobs for Birmingham residents by 2031. In addition to potential employment openings, Birmingham also created 10,000 more current career options with the headquarters of HSBC, Deutsche Bank, RBS and HS2 relocating to Birmingham. Not only will it create great employment prospects, but also be a short walking distance for most workers and residents living in Birmingham.




3. The City ViewsBirmingham, Alabama, USA downtown skyline.

London definitely has an impressive cityscape, but Birmingham has many features that make it a picturesque city as well. Tourists and visitors can enjoy the city views in various ways. With Birmingham having more canals than Venice, a boat can be one of the many options. In addition, it’s also called the greenest city of UK with over 8,000 acres of parks, green landscapes, and open spaces. So whether it’s just having a quick walk around the city square, or leisurely having a boat ride in their canals, residents will definitely feel more refreshed and rejuvenated living in this charming city.

4. The Crowdbirmingham_1

Birmingham is no stranger to a diverse and multicultural community, with a third of its population belonging to ethnic minority groups. In addition to being rich in culture, Birmingham also happens to be the youngest city in the UK with 40% of its population being under the age of 25. This is mainly due to the five esteemed universities in the city boasting 73,000 students, with 10,000 of them being from the Middle East alone. Even with 34 million visitors a year, Birmingham residents are glad that they don’t get the same influx of tourists as the UK capital. The low number of tourists makes the city a lot less congested and crowded, while the transportation system and abundant city streets make it easier to move around the city.


5. The Expensesswiscoin-as-an-investor

According to BBC, in 2015 around 6,000 residents made the permanent move from London to Birmingham due to high daily expenses in the capital. A 2013 study revealed that the total cost of living in Birmingham is an astonishing 60% lower than living in London. With affordable housing, transportation, and even cheaper grocery and food options, Londoners made the obvious choice of moving to the midland city.



With such outstanding features and incredible factors, it’s no wonder that Birmingham is gaining global recognition, making it the next obvious foreign investment choice for residents and individuals all over the world.


UK developers SevenCapital and Dubai-based agency Driven Properties are presenting a unique opportunity of investing in Birmingham through their latest project, Albion House. This latest installment of St. George’s Urban Village which is located in this city’s most lively and vibrant area, The Jewellery Quarter. This sector is home to jewellery artisans, entrepreneurs and some of Birmingham’s most creative community.With a central location and incredible prices, Albion House proves itself to be the indisputable option for Dubai residents who would like to take advantage of Birmingham’s rising name in the international market.

Contact our international property specialist Daniel Whitlock for more information about Albion House and investing in Birmingham.

Infographic: The Facts and World Records of Burj Khalifa, the Crown Jewel of Downtown Dubai

Burj Khalifa Driven Properties Infographic

With its dazzling architecture, Downtown Dubai represents a perfect marriage of urban design and luxury living.

The centerpiece of Downtown Dubai is the ever-majestic Burj Khalifa, which surrounded by the man-made Dubai Fountain, shopping outlets, high-end hotels, and some of the city’s most revered restaurants, cafes, and lounges. Burj Khalifa is not only the tallest man-made structure in the world, but also presents a unique design and vision which adds create to the identity of the neighbourhood as well as the city.

Take a look at our infographic to find out more Burj Khalifa facts and world records.


INFOGRAPHIC: Citywalk Phase 2



Seeing the great addition retail hub City Walk was to the city, the second phase of this Meraas development is set to be nothing short of incredible. Balancing between Downtown Dubai and Jumeirah, visitors of this project are immediately transported to a different land. With the new additions, City Walk integrates residential, dining, and entertainment in one unique space.


Driven Properties announces strategic partnership with Corcoran Group


Dubai-based brokerage Driven Properties recently signed an exclusive agreement with Corcoran Group, New York’s leading real estate agency. This strategic partnership gives Driven Properties the exclusive rights to market Corcoran’s properties in the region.


Projects Handing Over in 2016


The residential property pipeline kept growing in 2015, however many projects are nearing completion and developers are beginning to handover many of said projects soon. Here are a few of project set to be handover to owners in 2016.


City Walk – Phase 2: Retail and Dining Guide

city walk

Seeing the great addition retail hub City Walk was to the city, the second phase of this Meraas development is set to be nothing short of incredible. Balancing between Downtown Dubai and Jumeirah, visitors of this project are immediately transported to a different land. With the new additions, City Walk integrates residential, dining, and entertainment in one unique space.


Green Initiatives in the UAE

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In an effort to become a smart and sustainable city, many initiatives has been put in place to encourage residents and businesses to begin using eco-friendly habits and begin using renewable energy.

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The UAE government has started multiple initiatives over the years to begin using sustainable practices and energy across the country.


Sustainable Projects in Dubai


Dubai has always been one of the most ambitious and innovative cities in the world when it comes to property development and architecture. And just like how the city rose rapidly from the desert, it is also beginning to transform into an environmentally conscious city with many upcoming “green” initiatives by the government and developers.

Since Dubai is currently preparing for Expo 2020—of which one of the main themes is sustainability—many Dubai areas are undergoing visionary makeovers to integrate the elements of sustainability into new developments as well as the behavior of residents in order to reduce the nation’s environmental footprint.


Old meets New: Dubai Creek Harbour

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As a leader in Dubai real estate and luxury developments, Emaar Properties’ projects never fail to amaze us. The developer recently held a sales launch of the luxury projects in The Island District in Dubai Creek Harbour, a development by the historical Dubai Creek. Spanning over 6 sq. km—almost three times the size of Downtown Dubai—this project will be an urban district balancing between Old and New Dubai.