A close business associate to US President Donald Trump has been awarded a £250 million contract to build a 50-storey Versace-branded skyscraper in London.
“AYKON London One is our premiere international development outside of the Middle East and a landmark project for the UK’s capital,” said Hussain Sajwani, Chairman of DAMAC, in a press release published Monday.
“The project continues to garner interest from investors who appreciate such a niche investment opportunity and seek premium branded real estate in one of the most desirable cities in the world.”
Based in Dubai, DAMAC International is best known for its links to The Trump Organisation, the business run by Donald Trump until his election as U.S. president. DAMAC has developed the Trump International Gulf Club Dubai, as well as Trump-branded luxury villas in the Middle East worth 2.96 million dirhams ($805,858).
As Chairman of DAMAC, Sajwani is a close associate of Trump’s with the two competing numerous multi-million dollar property deals together. Despite this, whilst defending himself against potential conflicts of interest within the White House earlier this year he confused the Chairman’s name with the organisations name:
“I was offered $2 billion to do a deal in Dubai with a very, very, very amazing man, a great, great developer from the Middle East, Hussain Damac, a friend of mine, great guy. I was offered $2 billion to do a deal in Dubai, a number of deals. And I turned it down. I didn’t have to turn it down, because as you know, I have a no-conflict situation because I’m president…”
DAMAC International’s subsidiary Nine Elms Property is building the Versace-branded property which is set to feature 450 homes and four floors of office space. The development has been valued at £600 million ($826 million) when finished and will be first property in Europe designed in partnership with Versace.
The tower itself will form a part of the multi-billion pound regeneration scheme on the River Thames that also includes the construction of luxury apartments in Battersea Power Station and a new US embassy.
The development comes as prices for prime central London property are forecast to recover from a recent slowdown. Price growth for the sector peaked at 24 percent year on year in 2010, but is now down to single-digits.
“London continues to be a thriving city with one of the most robust economies in the world and a shortage of housing. Although there is a price adjustment in the market, I don’t envisage a slowdown in the number of new developments,” according to Elliot Castle, founder of U.K. home buying company, webuyanyhome.com.
“Economic conditions for households will remain challenging over the next year as inflation eats into budgets and interest rates begin to rise,” said Fionnuala Earley, Countrywide’s chief economist, in a press release.
“But we expect the UK economy to recover and wage growth to pick up in response to global growth. That, combined with a continued lack of housing supply, will help to support house prices. ” DMZ always welcomes foreign investment to our capital, which is especially attractive in a time of record low sterling versus the dollar. Funnily enough, Trump himself has never opened a hotel in London.
A red-tape opening ceremony for a London property is something everyone at DMZ would love to see – ‘Sir Alan Amstrad is a great, great guy and a one of my best friends in the world. This new Trump-Sugar hotel will be just awesome and completely change the Canary Wharf district, which I’ve heard is just a waste ground at the moment.’
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