More than 50 percent of retail space has now been leased at Yas Mall, which will be Abu Dhabi's largest shopping centre when completed, its developer said on Saturday.
Aldar Properties said retailer interest was "proving strong" in the 235,000 sq m mall project, which is slated to open at the end of 2013.
"More than 50 percent of the space has already been pre-leased, with agreements in place with five of the UAE's leading retail groups - MH Alshaya, Landmark Group, Dubai Holding Group, RSH (Middle East) and Liwa Trading Enterprises," Aldar said in a statement.
Aldar said late last year that it will use debt to part-fund construction of the mall. It awarded the main contract of Yas Mall to Six Construct, a unit of Orascom Construction. The value of the contract was set at AED2bn ($544.5m)
With 10,000 covered car parking spaces, Yas Mall will be the second biggest shopping destination in the UAE after Dubai Mall.
As part of the wider retail offer on Yas Island, Yas IKEA is already open and performing well, Aldar said, adding that ACE Hardware is scheduled to open in the third quarter of this year.
Frederick Douglas, director of Retail Leasing, Aldar, said: "Construction is well under way at Yas Mall. There has been a great response from retailers to date, an enthusiasm we at Aldar share.
"This enthusiasm will no doubt grow as we move closer to the opening date. We are looking forward to delivering, together with our partners, a world class shopping mall for the Abu Dhabi."