Quarterly Report Qatar Q1 2022: Retail Market Overview
Several new retail and F&B developments expected to launch in 2022
The long-anticipated opening of Qatar’s largest retail mall, Place Vendome, has been confirmed for April 2022, with most outlets now leased. Place Vendome is the first major mall (50,000 sq m +) to open in Qatar since Tawar Mall in 2018 and will feature several new retail brands in Qatar, including Fortnum & Mason, Urban Outfitters, and Anthropologie.
The opening of Place Vendome will represent the 19th mall in Doha that provides more than 20,000 sq m of leasable
accommodation. The addition of 230,000 sq m of retail space will increase Qatar’s overall supply of organised retail
accommodation to more than 1.7 million sq m.
Other upcoming retail/F&B developments in Qatar include Doha Oasis (Printemps), 04 Mall, Waddan Mall, Commercial Boulevard and the MENA District in Doha Port. Most of these developments are expected to complete in the coming months.
After eighteen months of disruption to supply chains, retailers have been reporting an improvement in securing stock from international suppliers. Supply chain issues remain in obtaining building materials which have delayed the launch of new projects and retail units over recent months.
Many major malls reported increased retail spending towards the end of 2021, which continued into Q1 2022, despite a surge in cases of the Omicron variant of COVID-19 in December.
Despite healthy leasing activity over the past six months, the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic has been evident in many retail destinations across Qatar. At the beginning of the year, approximately 20% of accommodation in Doha’s organised retail malls was vacant – with some mid-sized malls suffering from vacancy of up to 30%. It is becoming increasingly evident that a two-tiered retail market is emerging in Doha, with some of the more prominent retail malls attracting the majority of footfall, supporting occupancy and rental levels in these locations.
Line-unit rents in Doha’s busier malls are typically between QAR 200 and QAR 250 per sq m per month, although we understand that premium rents are being achieved in Place Vendome.
Rental incentives have been phased out to a large degree in Doha’s busier malls; however, significant discounts and turnover rents are still available in malls with higher vacancy as landlords look to increase occupancy.
Outside of the main retail malls, high street showrooms, local convenience retail, and F&B destinations are typically available to lease for between QAR 90 and QAR 150 per sq m per month.