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Why Cityscape 2009 was boring
The event this year was subdued and most of the stands looked empty. Kipp went scouting through the exhibition to see what the few visitors were looking at.
October 8, 2009 3:44 by Aarti Nagraj
Reporters also noted that they couldn’t find public relation (PR) managers at the stalls. Many of the CEO’s and department heads were also hard to trace. As one reporter put it, “This year, there [were] more promotion girls as they [were] substituting for missing CEO’s.”
Along with missing CEOs, the stalls also seemed to be missing the huge property models and glamorous displays that they had last year; according to Reuters, some developers spent up to AED13 million on the event in 2008. Most developers this year are only displaying existing projects, and several models have been recycled from last year; they’ve been dusted off and re-arranged.
“Sadly, I didn’t get a very good impression from the exhibition this year,” says Seema Sarwar, an investor from the UK who has been attending the exhibition for the last three years. “It’s a shame,” she adds.
Sarwar says that she was more tempted to look at the stalls belonging to Abu Dhabi-based developers this year, and bypassing projects by Dubai-based companies. The reason she gave was simple: “Abu Dhabi has more money.”
That’s the undeniable truth. Abu Dhabi is still attracting investors, in spite of Dubai’s high profile fall from grace.