Dubai Silicon Oasis is a free economic zone. This area is home to hundreds of international companies dealing with the development and sale of information technologies. There are also educational institutions here: many colleges and several universities. As a kind of city within a city, Oasis has become one of the most popular areas for expats from around the world. Apartments in low-rise residential complexes and villas are both in demand here. Read on to find out more about this area, its pros and cons, and about the real estate that you can rent or buy here.
About the Area
Dubai Silicon Oasis, or DSO, was created as a free economic zone in 2003. In 2015, Technology Entrepreneur Centre (IT start-up incubator centre) was launched here, creating a professional business environment and a perfect place for offices and research centres. Around 1000 companies from 70 countries are now operating in the area. In 2020, the innovative Dubai Digital park (DDP) complex opened in Silicon Oasis. This is an ambitious smart city project which claims to be the global standard of smart technology solutions. This complex includes about 50,000 square metres of offices, about 20,000 square metres of retail space, and more than 230 flats.
Silicon Oasis spreads over an area of 7.2 million square metres and is located at the intersection of Sheikh Mohammed Bin Zayed Road (E311) and Dubai-Al Ain Road (Е66). The location is an important advantage of this area, since these two highways connect it with different parts of Dubai. For example, Dubai Mall is only a 20-minute drive from Silicon Oasis, while Burj Khalifa and Jumeirah Beach are a 30-minute drive. Dubai International Airport is just 15 minutes away during off-peak hours. There are many educational institutions around the area: HCT Men's College, UK College of Business and Computing, Zayed University Dubai Campus, Emirates Aviation University, University of Dubai, Amity University. Parents can also send their children to GEMS Wellington Academy, GEMS Modern Academy, Repton School Dubai, Kings' School Nad Al Sheba, and others.
Pros and Cons of the Area
The number of expats wishing to settle in the Dubai Silicon Oasis has increased recently. In addition to the developed infrastructure, they are lured by the proximity of the Dubai International Academic City (DIAC). This university centre was built along Dubai Al Ain Road in 2006. It now has about 30 colleges and universities with about 27,000 students from around the world.
Well-developed infrastructure is another advantage of the area. In addition to beauty salons, fitness centres, medical clinics, restaurants with different cuisines and parks, there are many supermarkets and small shopping centres here. Residents rarely have to leave the area to deal with everyday matters: everything is close by. Shopping centres are popular here, such as Dragon Mart located within walking distance of many residential complexes, and Mirdif City Centre and Dubai Outlet Mall which you can reach in 12 minutes by car. Another popular place is the Cedre Villas community centre, which has shops, several restaurants, and a medical clinic.
Silicon Oasis has a well-developed public transport network; stops are located near residential complexes. However, there is not a single underground station in the area, and this is its main drawback. The closest station is Centrepoint, which is 20 minutes away by bus or taxi.
DSO does have another strong point that helps to make things better — affordable prices and wide selection of housing options. Here you can find studios, apartments with one, two or three bedrooms, and villas. That is, the area can offer a perfect home both for single professionals and for small families with children. You can rent a studio for $7600 per year, or buy it for a price starting from $79,000. Rent for a three-bedroom apartment costs about $21,000 per year, sale prices start at $240,000.
There are only two villa complexes in the area. The average rent for a villa with three bedrooms starts at $35,400 per year, with four bedrooms — at $37,300, and with five bedrooms — at $45,400. You can buy a house with three bedrooms from $645,000, with four bedrooms — from $720,000, with five bedrooms — from $806,000.
There are no new buildings in Dubai Silicon Oasis. Residential complexes appeared here at different times (from five to 10 years ago) and were built by different developers. Still, you can rent or buy housing here that meets all modern requirements. We have selected some of the most attractive properties.
Developer: Binghatti Developers
In this 14-storey elite residential complex, you can buy a finished apartment with an area starting from 83 square metres with one or two bedrooms. Prices range from $237,500 to $248,000. It will cost you about $10,800 per year to rent a one-bedroom apartment and $17,100 to rent a two-bedroom apartment. The complex has a swimming pool, a gym, a playground, a carpark, and 24-hour security. Indian International School is a 15-minute walk away and GEMS WSO is 20 minutes. Dovecote and Wonder Years kindergartens, as well as two clinics and the Dubai Mall are a 20-minute drive, and grocery stores are a 10-minute drive.
Developer: Deira Group
This residential complex with four towers was built in 2011. The building has 26 storeys. High arches in the facades of the building make it one of the most eye-catching projects in Dubai Silicon Oasis. The complex offers studios, one- two- and three-bedroom apartments, as well as penthouses with four bedrooms; in total, there are 864 apartments. Renting an apartment in the complex costs between $7,800 and $25,870 per year. Renting a penthouse will cost around $49,000. You can buy a studio for $68,000 to $92,600, a one-bedroom apartment for $98,000 to $150,000, a two-bedroom apartment for $177,000 to $234,200 and a three-bedroom apartment for $272,320 to $286,000. The complex has swimming pools, a health club with a sauna, a gym, squash courts, a playground, a nursery school, indoor parking, and 24-hour security. There are cafes and restaurants, as well as a pharmacy and a supermarket in the shopping area. The complex is perfect for families with children as it is a short drive from the park.
Developer: Gulf General Investments (GGICO)
This residential complex built in 2011 features eight buildings with up to nine storeys. Each building has 150 to 300 units: studios and apartments with one, two or three bedrooms. The kitchens are equipped with household appliances.
Average rent for a studio is $8,169 per year. Renting an apartment with one bedroom will cost $11,437, with two bedrooms — $17,156, with three bedrooms — $28,593. To buy an apartment with one bedroom one will have to pay from $103,000 to $163,400, with two bedrooms — from $181,000 to $204,240.
The complex has rooftop swimming pools, gyms, playgrounds, a landscaped yard with a garden, and 24-hour security. All buildings have car and bicycle parking. The project is a perfect place for students and employees of IT companies because it is close to the Technology Park and academic campus. Children can attend Vernus International School Dubai and Emirates British Nursery, located within a five-minute walk from the complex. A trip to North Park will take just five minutes.
La Vista Residence
Developer: Al Manal Development
This 11-storey residential complex was built in 2012. It has studios and one- and two-bedrooms apartments, with a total of 120 units. Renting a studio will cost around $8169, an apartment with one bedroom — $10,892, with two bedrooms — $16,339. The complex has a gym, a banquet hall, a sauna, a jacuzzi, indoor parking, and separate swimming pools for children and adults, as well as 24-hour security. Vernus International School Dubai (1.2 kilometres) and the German International School Dubai (1.4 kilometres) are located near the complex. It takes half an hour to get to the beaches of Palm Jumeirah.
Palace Tower 2
Developer: Tameer Holding Investments
This residential tower with 24 storeys was built in 2009. There are 424 units in the complex: studios, one- and two-bedroom apartments. The first two storeys of the complex are occupied by commercial premises: a fitness club, a spa, a sauna, kids club, retail space, and a carpark. The building has 24-hour video surveillance, and there is a reception desk in the lobby. There are several restaurants and supermarkets near the residential complex. You can rent a studio here from $6800 per year, a one-bedroom apartment from $10,000, and a two-bedroom apartment from $23,600 per year. Purchase prices in the complex range from $68,000 to $136,000.
This villa complex was built in 2009. There are a little over 1200 furnished houses with three, four, and five bedrooms. Each villa comes with covered parking for two or more cars. Rent will cost you between $39,500 and $50,380 per year. The complex has a landscaped park, a pool, and tennis courts. Within walking distance from Cedre Villas, there are several supermarkets, Spinneys market in the Cedre Centre, Cedre Centre and Souq extra shopping malls. There are several schools nearby, including GEMS Academy, Repton school, the German International School, and City School International. In addition, there are several hospitals near the complex: Mediclinic Parkview Hospital, University Hospital, Farha Clinics Children Centre, Aster Clinic, and Medicure polyclinic among them. The closest entertainment facilities are the IMG Worlds of Adventure theme park and Wonderland with a water park.
Developer: Dubai South
The complex is located three minutes away from the entrance to DSO and four minutes from the Dubai Al Ain Road (Е66). In total, there are 560 four-bedroom villas. The houses have storage rooms, staff rooms, terraces, barbecue areas, private gardens and parking for two cars. There are prestigious nursery schools nearby: British Orchard Nursery, Toddlers International Nursery, Fantasy Town Nursery & Play Lounge, as well as The Indian International School, GEMS Wellington Academy, and the French lyceum. Near the complex are several supermarkets (Carrefour Market and Choithrams), Souq extra shopping centre, Aster Clinic, Magnum Gulf Medical Centre Silicon Oasis, and Eupepsia Medical Clinic.
In a Nutshell
Silicon Oasis is considered one of the most attractive areas in Dubai for investors, as the rental income here is higher than in other areas. This is due to the high demand for apartments among expats with different income levels and social status. DSO is in a good location and has developed infrastructure, so interest in the area remains stable. There is no new construction in the area and all buildings are between five and 10 years old, but they meet all modern requirements.
Cover photo: Saj Shafique (Unsplash)