GFH opens billion-dollar Gateway

US $1.4 billion ‘Gateway to Morocco’ development will comprise Marrakech Equestrian City and Cap Malabata Resort

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By  Conrad Egbert Published  August 5, 2006

Gulf Finance House (GFH) is set to develop two mixed-use developments in Morocco, which will be called the ‘Gateway to Morocco’. With a total project value estimated at US $1.4 billion (MAD12.1 billion), the first phase of the project will comprise two elements — Marrakech Equestrian City and Cap Malabata Resort in Tangiers. Qatar-based MZ & Partners is the architectural consultant and master planner for the project. Marrakech Equestrian City will be a mixed-use sporting, leisure and residential complex, spread over a total area of 380ha and will boast a world-class horse racing track supported by state-of-the-art stabling, veterinary facilities and grandstands. Mounir Chraibi, the Wali of Marrakech, said: “The planned Equestrian City — the first of its kind in the region — will not only enhance the prestige of the ‘pink city’ but will also help to generate important revenue from both sporting and tourism-related visitors.” The Cap Malabatta Resort in Tangiers has been designed as a mixed-use tourism, commercial and residential destination on the Mediterranean coast, and will cover a total area of 129ha. It will feature cafés, galleries, shopping areas, a marina, beach house, golf course, equestrian club and convention centre, as well as a range of residential and commercial accommodation. Gulf Finance House chief executive and board member Esam Janahi said: “Morocco’s pro-business environment, trade agreements with the European Union and the US, and its closeness to Europe, were key factors in our decision to invest in the kingdom. “Gateway to Morocco not only marks the bank’s entry into Morocco but is our first stepping stone in partnering with the government and contributing to infrastructure development initiatives in the kingdom.”

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