Campbell Gray Living aims to meet the growing demand for high-end real estate in Jordan.
Jordan’s real estate sector seems to have finally found its footing following some challenging years. Heavyweight companies from across the region are busy building high-end projects across the Kingdom.
A prime example is Campbell Gray Living, a multi-million dollar development in the heart of Abdali district that’s now bringing to market a range of luxury residences, serviced apartments, offices, and retail units. Investors are being told to expect a rental return of around 5 percent.
The company behind the project, Al Seraje Real Estate Development is a subsidiary of the Cyrpus-based Audeh Group.
The group’s managing director, Saad Audeh, spoke to Venture about why he chose Amman for this particular project and how he managed to transform the Kingdom into a destination for buyers who normally look for luxury and style elsewhere.
What has the demand been like so far for units in your development?
We have been very pleased with the pace at which the units are selling. The three-bedroom apartments are the most in demand right now. We have been getting a lot of interest from families looking for bigger apartments and more space.
Who are the buyers you have been targeting, particularly that the price per square meter is higher than the average in Amman?
Our main buyers have been Jordanian expats and high-net-worth-individuals residing in Jordan and looking for premium real estate that they previously might have had to look for in the GCC. Now they can find it in Amman and be part of the story of the new downtown of Amman. Most of them have purchased for the purpose of investment and even as a first home for newly-weds who are looking for a more modern home, which isn’t typically available on the traditional Amman real estate market. We have received a lot of interest from investors in the GCC, especially from the UAE, who view this project as a profitable investment opportunity and others who are looking to have a home away from their place of residence. We have had investors who bought apartments as soon as they entered the development because they understood and could sense the emotions put into its development. Investing in Amman offers GCC investors the opportunity to enter a new and lucrative market that is exciting and showing a very healthy growth rate, which allows them to diversify their assets by investing in top-of-the-line tangible assets such as Campbell Gray Living.
Are you happy with the way the Abdali area turned out to be and is it what you envisioned when you agreed to develop a mixed-use development there?
I am thrilled with the way the Abdali area has emerged. It is the business and residential hub of Amman, providing visitors with the perfect place to live, work, and play. Abdali is home to the largest shopping center in Jordan, the Abdali Mall, which offers restaurants and shops, an entertainment center, a supermarket and nine-screen cinema. The area also has a host of luxury hotel accommodations, cafes, restaurants, as well as local and international fashion boutiques. Abdali serves as an ideal setting for the Campbell Gray Living development and we are delighted that we are part of such an exciting project.
There are similar high-end developments in Abdali and elsewhere in the capital, what sets Campbell Gray apart from the rest?
What sets us apart is the attention to detail we give to every aspect of our properties in addition to the quality of materials and finishes used. We worked in partnership with the Paris-based Architecture Studio, which has created a design that is not only unique to Jordan, but to the entire Middle East region. Each individual residence offers classic contemporary design, which has been designed by the multi-award-winning Martin Brudnizki Design Studio. In addition to this, the project pays homage to its roots by acquiring all its artwork from local and regional artists. Arguably the best feature of the development can be found on the rooftop of the residential building. Exclusively for the use of the private residences, this incredible array of leisure facilities offers a private retreat in the heart of the city. The list of amenities on offer includes an infinity pool, bar, an open-air gymnasium, fire pits with surrounding seating area, a large communal hot tub and the most unique part of all is nine individual private cabanas, each with their own hot tub, sun loungers, and seating and dining areas. We have aimed to create a product that isn’t just a great investment but also a place that people would be proud to live in and showcase.
What do buyers at this end of market expect from a property?
At Campbell Gray Living, no compromises were made when it came to the quality of the build, materials, and equipment used, or the finishes. The contemporary design, attention to detail and quality of workmanship at Campbell Gray Living Amman is unsurpassed in Jordan. The project uses only the best products; Italian marble, German kitchenware and appliances, Lebanese hardwood and the latest ‘smart home’ technology from Lutron. Most importantly, we have used one of the best project management companies in the world to supervise the project and we have only used reliable and highly skilled contractors to complete the finishes. The style of the apartments and the added lifestyle benefits give investors access to the jet-set lifestyle they have grown accustomed to abroad but now in Amman.
What are the main challenges you faced and are facing in the building and selling process?
Jordan is a very stable market that offers a lot of opportunities to everyone that comes here. With that said, due to the tense political atmosphere in the region the market is facing a slight decline. We have, however, been very happy with the pace at which Campbell Gray Living has been selling. We have been successful with the Campbell Gray Living product as we are offering a brand that is trusted and known globally for its high-quality luxury offering.
How is the real estate sector doing in Jordan and across the region in general?
According to the IMF, Jordan’s GDP will reach 4 percent by 2019. The country is strategically located in the Middle East, acting as a gateway to neighboring and global markets. The real estate market is booming with international standards of luxury available. The region as a whole has tremendous potential in terms of real estate development and investment with laws relaxing across the region with the aim of attracting foreign investment. This, of course, will impact the property and rental markets positively and adds to Amman being an attractive investment destination.
What lessons has the region’s real estate sector learned over recent years?
With Dubai’s success in real estate, the Middle East is showing a thirst for new developments and opportunities for investment. Going back just a few decades, there was no focus on real estate, it was on the more traditional avenues like industry and trade. Now, governments have realized the potential in investing in real estate. We see Arab expats who are interested in real estate in London and New York looking for opportunities in the Middle East. For the last decade the GCC, especially Dubai, has been at the top of the list. After seeing this success in Dubai, the rest of the region is now focusing on this market and offering opportunities for expats a little closer to home.
What other projects in Jordan does the Audeh Group have lined up?
We plan to open a Campbell Gray Amman, which is the hotel that will be opening in 2019. It will be a destination in itself and will provide residents, tenants, and visitors the opportunity to live a life of luxury in one of the most historic cities in the world.