Dubai Design District or D3 is a mixed-use development by TECOM Group. Launched in 2013, the first phase of the district was completed in 2015 with 11 buildings featuring 1,000 office units and 100 retail units. Phase 2 of the district will consist of showrooms, studios and workshops, while Phase 3 will feature Creekside along with hospitality and leisure facilities such as hotels and restaurants.
The district is made up of popup shops, restaurants, cafes, recreational facilities, nightlife options and the Dubai Institute of Design and Innovation (DID) in addition to the commercial buildings. It is part of the TECOM Freezone Business Park and Dubai Development Authority (DDA).
Dubai Design District serves as a hub for creative thinkers related to art, design and culture. Not only does the area attracts all sorts of international and local talent but it is also a venue for many concerts, exhibitions and outdoor events throughout the year.
TECOM Group launched the project in 2013, which was to develop a space to encourage creative thinkers and bolster local as well as international talent, related to art, design, culture and fashion.
The development was set to be completed in three phases, with the first phase reaching completion in 2015 while the other two phases are currently underway. Made up of 11 buildings, the first phase offers office units, co-working spaces, showrooms and retail outlets.
Dubai Design District consists of many recreational facilities too, such as The Block as well as some nightlife options. The overall district is laden with artwork of different kinds and is being built as part of the Dubai Plan 2021, making it one of the best places with street art in Dubai. The district is where local talent and aspiring designers can work and play while start-ups and emerging businesses can also enhance their growth.
Properties in Dubai Design District include:
The completed buildings in the area feature fully-developed offices and studios that are available as co-working spaces too. These co-working spaces cover a wide range of services, from high-speed internet to pantry service and much more. Businesses that have licenses registered with the Dubai Development Authority (DDA) can rent these offices. Moreover, freelancer licenses are also available for those working in industries related to design and fashion.
While there are no hotels in Dubai Design District, the immediate neighbours such as Business Bay are abundant in terms of chic hotels. A few of these include:
All of these renowned hotels in Business Bay boast of some of the most world-class options when it comes to renting a suite, dining or indulging in luxury overall. DoubleTree by Hilton Dubai is situated in the mixed-use complex namely Bay Square.
Drawing inspiration from the 105-year history of Paramount Pictures, Paramount Hotel pays ode to the glamour of Old Hollywood. It offers movie-themed suites along with a Malibu Deck bar, a scene room, a screening room and facilities such as a dine-in cinema, pools and a fitness studio.
JW Marriott Marquis Hotel is made up of two skyscrapers, each standing on 82 floors making it the second tallest hotel in the world. The hotel houses many fine dining restaurants and bars along with 1,608 luxury accommodations.
For parking in Dubai Design District, one can find reserved spaces in the garages. A unique feature of these garages is the artwork embossed, which give them a creative edge.
The public transport system of Dubai makes it easy to travel via taxis, buses, metro and even trams. Taxis can be booked through the RTA app while those interested can use ride-hailing services such as Uber and Careem too.
The district has one bus stop namely Dubai Design District Bus Stop, which services the routes D03 and D03A. These routes take you to the Dubai Mall as well as the bus stops and metro stations in the surrounding.
For boarding Dubai Metro, you have to drive from 6 to 10 minutes and find some of the metro stations near the Dubai Design District. Financial Centre Metro Station and Emirates Tower Metro Station are reachable via Financial Centre Road (D71), whereas, for reaching Business Bay Metro Station and Burj Khalifa/ Dubai Mall Metro Station, you have to take the Ras Al Khor Road then turn towards Al Meydan Road and land on Sheikh Zayed Road (E11).
You can also reach Creek Metro Station and Al Jadaf Metro Station by boarding through Al Ain – Dubai Road then the Al Khail Road (D63), both of which are also reachable within 11 minutes.
For quick groceries, one can find All Day Gourmet in Building 1, which is the 52nd outlet of the Allday chance of convenience stores in the UAE.
Other supermarkets near Dubai Design District are situated in Business Bay and Downtown Dubai, such as:
These supermarkets rank as amongst Dubai’s best supermarkets, owing to their wide-ranging and high-quality items. Spinneys supermarkets in Dubai and in the UAE are renowned for their organic and fresh products, as well as ice creams.
Prayer rooms are available in Building 2 and Building 11. For larger mosques, one can head over to the nearby communities. Some of the mosques near Dubai Design District are:
Al Ghafoor Mosque is an expansive mosque in the Business Bay area, covering a built-up area of 14,634 sq. ft.
Hindus can resort to the temples in Bur Dubai, which are reachable within a drive of 20 minutes. The Bur Dubai is densely populated with Hindu expats from India, thereby serving as the prime spot for temples in the city.
Most of the churches near Dubai Design District can be found in the Umm Hurair 2 and Oud Metha communities. These include:
All of these are renowned churches of Dubai and require a drive of 12 minutes to reach. St. Mary’s Catholic Church is not only one of the oldest in Dubai, but in the overall Gulf region too.
Guru Nanak Darbar Gurudwara, located 24 minutes away is open to the Sikh community as well as people of other faith throughout the year. Covering 125,000 sq. ft. of an area in Jebel Ali Village, the Gurudwara is the largest in the Gulf region.
The district is home to the Dubai Institute of Design and Innovation, which offers the Bachelor of Design (BDes) degree. Students get to learn through various workshops and develop their own ‘cross-disciplinary’ study paths by combining two or more disciplines. It is located in Building 4.
The ground floor of Building 2 houses the Blossom Nursery, which serves as a point of convenience for parents who work in the area. Not only do Blossom Nurseries in Dubai have qualified educators, but paediatricians and nurses too for helping children throughout.
Some of the schools near Dubai Design District are some of the best schools in Dubai. These include:
Jagadguru Sri Shivarathreeshwara Private School or JSS Private School is 9 minutes away in Al Wasl. Following the CBSE curriculum, the school is part of the Indian-based charitable trust namely JSSMVP group and offers classes from Kindergarten 1 to Grade 12, making it one of the best schools near Business Bay. It is also one of Dubai’s most premium schools.
Hartland International School lies at a 9-minute drive in Mohammed Bin Rashid (MBR) City. It has been developed by The Sobha Group and offers classes from Foundation Stages to Year 11, following the National Curriculum of the UK. Being one of the IB schools in Dubai, Hartland International School offers IB courses in the higher classes too.
Swiss International Scientific School is 14 minutes away in Al Jaddaf. Offering a bi-lingual syllabus with a combination of English / French and English / German, the school follows the IB curriculum and has classes from Pre-Kindergarten to Grade 12.
Some of Dubai’s best hospitals are reachable within a drive of 9 to 12 minutes, such as:
The Business Bay branch of Emirates Hospital & Clinic has a medical staff available for cardiology, dentistry, dermatology, ENT, obstetrics and gynaecology, internal medicine, paediatrics and general medicine.
Safa Clinic provides medical services in dentistry, dermatology, ENT, internal medicine, paediatrics and has a radiography unit as well as a laboratory. Latifa Women and Children Hospital is one of UAE’s largest maternity and children’s hospitals.
Nearby areas include:
Located to the west of D3, Business Bay is a mixed-use neighbourhood that mirrors the fast-paced lifestyle of Manhattan in New York City and is becoming the central business hub of Dubai. It borders Downtown Dubai, a sought-after tourist destination in the city.
On the northern side of Dubai Design District is Za’abeel, which is a large mixed-use area that encompasses Al Kifaf, Za’abeel 1 and Za’abeel 2. It is home to the Za’abeel Palace and Za’abeel Park, which further houses the renowned Dubai Frame.
Ras Al Khor borders Dubai Design District to the east. Covering a residential area and the Ras Al Khor Industrial Area (a mixed-use zone), the community consists of freehold properties too. It is also known for being close to the Ras Al Khor Road (E44) and housing the Ras Al Khor Wildlife Sanctuary.
To the south are Meydan City and Mohammed Bin Rashid City, both of which form part of the larger Nad Al Sheba. Meydan City is an off-plan project spanning 40 million sq. ft. of land area.
Mohammed Bin Rashid City or MBR City is a mixed-use development, currently under construction. It offers luxurious mansions, apartments and villas and will be home of the largest shopping centre in the world.
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While the glitzy neighbourhood in Dubai itself houses plenty of retail outlets, it also lies in proximity to some of the best malls in Dubai. Some of the malls near Dubai Design District are:
Dubai Mall is only 7 minutes away from the area. Spanning 12 million sq. ft., the colossal shopping centre is amongst the largest malls in the world. You can visit it for retail therapy or for its unique entertainment and dining options, such as Ice Rink Dubai, the VR Park or its Aquarium and Underwater Zoo.
WAFI Mall is located at an 11-minute drive. Located in Dubai Healthcare City, Umm Hurair 2, the mall boasts of Egyptian architecture with various sphinxes, statues of pharaohs and hieroglyphic columns too.
You can reach the Dubai Festival City Mall in 13 minutes. As the name suggests, the mall enjoys a prime location in Dubai Festival City and houses more than 400 local and international luxury brands.
The district is home to a number of eateries, many of which offer a thriving nightlife too. Restaurants in Dubai Design District include:
1Life serves healthy dishes that include both veg and non-veg items. Akiba Tori is a Japanese restaurant, the architecture of which draws inspiration from an indoor alleyway in Akihabara, Tokyo.
Home Bakery Kitchen, as the name suggests serves breakfasts, pies, loafs, cookies and other bakery items with a homemade taste. Mohalla is an Indian restaurant that pays ode to the ‘community neighbourhoods’ and offers street food.
Molecule is a bistro and lounge that serves Mediterranean dishes. Mum’s Table offers homemade Syrian dishes such as tahini, halloumi, labneh, samosas and other Syrian items. The Lighthouse is another haven for healthy Mediterranean dishes like Tuna Tartare on toast and Seabream Cerviche.
At Tossed, you can create your own custom healthy meals with a fine selection of fresh ingredients. Vicolo is an Italian restaurant while YUi deals in Japanese ramen and other Japanese dishes. Chez Charles is a fine dining French restaurant.
When it comes to nightlife, restaurants offering nightlife are Molecule, Chez Charles, The Lighthouse and Akiba Dori.
Cafes in Dubai Design District include:
Starbucks and The Espresso Lab are renowned coffeehouses where individuals can resort to for enjoying snacks or filling up on caffeine.
For upscale dining and more options in nightlife, the neighbouring Business Bay area boasts of many options, some of which are:
All of these restaurants in Business Bay come with full bars and a posh environment along with exquisite dishes. The Galliard serves Turkish delicacies, featuring tastes inspired from Spanish, Italian and French cuisine too. Tong Thai covers all sorts of Thai dishes, ranging from regional items to street food too.
ROKA is an award-winning Japanese restaurant while World Cut Steakhouse is an American steakhouse that features a collection of steakhouse classics amidst a sophisticated environment, with natural dark wood and leather upholstered furniture.
Within a drive of 15 minutes towards the western end, individuals can reach the coastal side of Dubai and access beaches such as Jumeirah Public Beach and Kite Beach, both of which are amongst Dubai’s best beaches. Featuring a 1.8-kilometre running track and a lively atmosphere, Jumeirah Public Beach is perfect for water sports and a day under the sun.
Kite Beach comes with an array of facilities that are not limited to water activities only, but also includes a skate park, a gym, areas for outdoor sports, a few retail outlets, food trucks and of course, kite surfing.
While the district itself is a sought-after destination in terms of leisure activities, it also lies in proximity to notable landmarks in the city, which are reachable within a drive of 10 to 12 minutes, such as:
Ras Al Khor Wildlife Sanctuary is a wetland reserve that is monitored by the Dubai Municipality. While it is best known for its flamingos, the sanctuary is abundant in flora and fauna and features different varieties of mammals, reptiles, birds and mangroves too.
Dubai Opera is located in the heart of Downtown Dubai and consists of eight floors. Designed by Janus Rostock, Dubai Opera is shaped like a dhow and hosts many musical concerts, jazz performances and stand-up comedy throughout the year.
Dubai Canal is a man-made canal that stretches 3.2 kilometres along the Sheikh Zayed Road (E11). It is a popular waterfront destination with five pedestrian bridges and three networks, namely The Water Network, Public Realm and Green Network. The canal is an extension of Deira Creek and offers activities such as abra and dhow rides.
The Warehouse Gym is located on the ground floor of Building 8. It provides all sorts of fitness services including multifunctional training facilities for weightlifting, CrossFit and bodybuilding too. It is one of the top gyms of Dubai too.
Gents can frequent Chaps & Co in Building 6 for personal grooming and other beauty treatments, such as manicures, pedicures, facials and massages.
Also ranked amongst the best skate parks in Dubai, The Block is a recreational area where you will find different sports courts. Moreover, it consists of an urban beach and climbing walls too so you can unwind and relax to the fullest.
A number of events take place at the district from time to time, which are updated on the website such as Dubai Design Week, Dubai Home Festival, d3 Architecture Festival and d3 Fashion Showcase. Dubai Design Week is set to be amongst the topmost anticipated art events for 2021. For hosting events, there are five indoor and six outdoor event spaces in the community.
The indoor event spaces include:
The outdoor event spaces include:
Moreover, smaller events such as workshops and galleries also take place in a few spaces in the community, such as:
Colab is a purpose-built material library, which is the first in the city. It is an open space where numerous galleries and events take place, for enhanced networking and community building amongst creative thinkers. The Factory is a studio space, where workshops and talks occur frequently.
Two more phases of the district are currently underway, which will feature many more studios, hospitality units, retail options, showrooms and restaurants too. The second phase shall stress on the construction of the creative community while the third phase will focus on the Creek side’s development.
Dubai Design District (D3) is one of the most happening areas for having an office in the city, especially if your interests or business pertains to the design and fashion industry. However, the area does not boast of freehold options and offers spaces on a rental basis only.
Dubai Design District (d3) is a purpose-built development by the TECOM Group, who have been establishing it under the Dubai Plan 2021 using Smart City principles. The development is supposed to serve as a safe haven for creative thinkers, artists, designers and art-enthusiasts where new and unique ideas can bolster and grow further.
Dubai Design District is centrally located between Ras Al Khor, Za’abeel, Business Bay and Mohammed Bin Rashid (MBR) City. It is connected to Al Ain – Dubai Road (E66) to its right, Ras Al Khor Road (E44) to its south and Financial Centre Road (D71) to its left.
Yes, Dubai Design District is a Freezone business park where those with a Dubai Development Authority (DDA)-registered license rent an office space.
You can get to the D3 by boarding the buses D03A and D03 from Dubai Mall, or you can drive there via RTA taxis, Uber and Careem.
Dubai Design District is not located adjacent to any of the metro stations, which is why you will have to board the buses D03 and D03A from Dubai Mall Metro Station Landside and reach the area.