London: A Summer Home from Home for the Wealthy from the UAE


Dubai regularly reaches 40°C during July and August, and it holds the record for one of the highest temperatures in history. On 21st July 2016, the temperature soared to an astonishing 49.2°C (120.6°F)1. With its desert climate, influenced by the warm waters of the Arabian Gulf, it’s little wonder that wealthy residents of the UAE metropolis and its neighbouring towns, seek to relocate somewhere cooler in the summer months. With multiple direct flights a day, London has always been an attractive destination for high and ultra-high-net-worth individuals, particularly now that UAE nationals no longer require a visa to visit the UK.

London is renowned as a playground of the rich and famous, it offers a hub for business, tourism, and education and a vibrant social and shopping scene. The city is renowned for its range of specialist private hospitals, offering a variety of specialisms and central locations, and boasts some of the best private schools and universities in the entire country, should you personally need to stay for an extended period or stay close by to loved ones. In this article, we explore the city in more detail, including some of the features that make it an excellent summer getaway and location for both a home and property investment.

An abundance of places to stay

London offers hundreds of hotels from the boutique to the extravagant, so there’s something to suit every budget and taste, especially those appreciating the finer things in life.  

Raffles London at The OWO was opened after a seven-year, £1.3billion restoration of what was the Old War Office on Whitehall, transforming the original building built in 1906. It offers themed suites and a hidden bar on a floor that once housed secret service offices, serving a version of the cocktail made famous by the original Raffles in Singapore.

Overlooking Hyde Park and close to the Knightsbridge shopping area is The Berkeley, which features a series of individual and unique suites, designed by some of the world’s most brilliant interior designers including John Heah, André Fu, and Robert Angell. In nearby Belgravia, the recently renovated The Hari has a more laid-back and personal feel with just 85 rooms. A luxury afternoon tea here is a must.

The Londoner offers tranquillity in the heart of Leicester Square, with 16 floors situated around a stunning atrium, half of which lies below ground level. The rooftop bar offers spectacular views over London, or you can visit the basement spa, on-site cinema, or ballroom.

Opened in 2014, the Shangri-La Hotel occupies levels 34 to 52 of the tallest skyscraper in Europe, the 1,000ft The Shard in South London, offering breathtaking views of the city below. Modern and classic art from both acclaimed Asian and British artists are showcased throughout the property. Hotel facilities include a fully equipped gym, sky pool, and a luxury spa, as well as over 200 tastefully decorated rooms and suites that reflect Shangri-La’s heritage.

A food-lovers paradise

London is now home to six restaurants with the coveted three-star Michelin rating, as well as several more one and two-star restaurants.

Hélène Darroze at The Connaught offers exquisite French cuisine crafted by the acclaimed two-time Michelin star chef. If you’re a Gordon Ramsay fan, the celebrity chef's flagship restaurant in Chelsea, Restaurant Gordon Ramsay, has held three Michelin stars for over two decades; it also serves French cuisine.

One Michelin star restaurant Jamavar is a Mayfair-based fine dining concept based on the rich and diverse culinary traditions of India, with décor inspired by Viceroy’s House in New Delhi. It takes its name from the intricate 16th century lace shawls of Kashmir. Located in Marylebone, Locanda Locatelli is a one Michelin star Italian restaurant by Chef Giorgio Locatelli, offering a range of regional cuisine from all over Italy.

Experience a traditional Kyoto-style multi-course dinner at Umu, a Michelin star restaurant in Mayfair, and enjoy authentic dishes using locally sourced ingredients from Cornwall and the British Isles. Frequented by Katherine, The Princess of Wales, The Dining Room at The Goring, is a British Michelin star restaurant within the magnificent Edwardian hotel, The Goring, close to Buckingham Palace.

High-end patisseries such as Cédric Grolet at the Berkeley, The Connaught Patisserie by Nicolas Rouzaud, and Prada Caffè in London cater to those seeking the finest sweet treats imaginable.

A wealth of things to see and do for everyone

Royal Ascot, the world-famous horse-racing event in June, heralds the start of the summer sporting calendar in London and a chance to put on your finery. Of course, a trip to London wouldn’t be complete without watching a game of tennis. Wimbledon is the world’s oldest and most prestigious tennis championship, hosted by the All-England Club since 1877 - a great reason to visit the city in July and enjoy their fabled strawberries and cream. Alternatively, enjoy a game of cricket at one of London’s two famous grounds, the Oval, and Lord’s Cricket Ground, get close to the game’s traditions, and sample a glass of fizz and some of the finest event catering in the country.

Summer is London’s carnival season, with plenty of events to keep everyone entertained. The Notting Hill Carnival is London’s biggest and liveliest street party of the year. The purpose of the carnival, which takes place around Ladbroke Grove and Westbourne Park, is to celebrate the West Indian community and promote unity within the city.

Whilst the nearest seaside resort is a couple of hours away from London, the city itself boasts several open air Lidos if you fancy a swim on a hot day, including London Fields and Tooting Bec, or head down to the swimming lake at Beckenham Place Park. Although for many the Serpentine in Hyde Park, given its posh central location is the place to be seen. And if you love the great outdoors then you may be surprised to hear that London has many beautiful parks and green spaces, including an array of Royal Parks, as well as large open spaces such as Blackheath Common, Hampstead Heath, and Richmond Park, where there are herds of deer to view. Epping Forest offers 6,000 hectares and stretches from Manor Park in East London, all the way to the Essex border.

London is home to over 250 theatres, the London Palladium being the largest, with a capacity of over 2,000. From long standing musicals like the Phantom of the Opera and Les Misérables, both launched in the 1980s, to plays, pantomimes, and stand-up, the London theatre scene caters to everyone. Wembley Stadium and the 02 offer a variety of musical events and concerts throughout the year, attracting some of the biggest acts and pop stars in the world. Other noteworthy concert venues include Alexandra Palace, The Barbican, and The Royal Festival Hall.

London is a city brimming with tourist attractions, which bring in around 30 million visitors from all over the world every year, including Buckingham Palace, the London Eye, Madame Tussauds, and the London Dungeon. There are simply far too many to mention. The same goes for retail therapy, with top-notch department stores like Selfridges, Harvey Nichols, and Harrods, as well as the prime shopping districts of Bond Street of Chelsea. The two Westfield shopping centers provide a wide array of outlets and choices.

Excellent property investment opportunities

If you visit London regularly, have family here, or plan to stay for extended periods, then you may want to consider buying a second property in the UK. The good news is that UAE residents can freely buy property in London without any restrictions.

The areas surrounding Hyde Park include some of the capitals, and perhaps even the world’s, most exclusive neighbourhoods, offering a mixture of modern apartment complexes and large Edwardian, Georgian, and Victorian houses, with excellent transport links and tree-lined streets.

London’s most prestigious areas to buy include Knightsbridge, with an average property price of £3.2m, closely followed by Mayfair at £3.1m. Other areas on the rich list include West Brompton at just under £1.1m and Marylebone at around £1.7m. These areas represent a lucrative investment; buy a property in Chelsea and rent it out for the rest of the year, and you could make up to £6,000 per month in rental income.

specialist mortgage broker, with intimate knowledge of the capital, with experience in overseas income can prove invaluable if you’re serious about buying, particularly one familiar with the needs of high and ultra-high net-worth individuals like Enness Global. They’ll have access to a network of private lenders and banks which are more flexible when it comes to considering international income streams and pools of wealth and can help navigate the application process on your behalf. It is also beneficial when they have offices in both the UAE and London, so you can meet at all stages of any finance application process.

Plenty of available workspaces

Because of its location in central Europe, and flight routes to almost anywhere in the world, London has always been an attractive hub for conducting business. Sitting at the core of EU, Asian, and US time zones, it’s no wonder that the UK capital attracts more European headquarters than any other city.

If you’re in town for a limited period and don’t have access to a dedicated workspace, London has an abundance of on-demand workspaces that can be booked by the day or hour. As well as a site for purchase.

Tobacco Dock offers a co-working space in a beautiful grade I listed building, right next to one of London’s biggest events facilities of the same name. Tenants are the first to hear about the latest gigs, productions, and launch parties at Tobacco Dock.

On the other side of London, Paddington Works, situated just a 5-minute walk from Paddington Station, near the business hub of the Paddington Basin, is a beautifully designed co-working space offering health-conscious features such as fresh air filtration and time adaptive lighting. This location is also served by the Heathrow Express, travelling directly to London’s biggest airport.

Located in the heart of Camden, LABS Atrium is close to the bustling Camden market. This co-working space has created a relaxed, creative feel with excellent facilities including meeting rooms, event space, and breakout areas.

A stone’s throw from Liverpool Street Station, the trendy neighbourhood of Shoreditch is a great location to work whilst discovering the vibrant and eclectic street artnightlife, and creative culture. There are several great co-working spaces here such as Mindspace Shoreditch in the heart of Tech City (a cluster of technology companies in East London) and Fora, a beautiful and unique co-working space that offers double-height ceilings and enormous floor-to-ceiling windows that let in bags of natural light.

Fitzrovia House is in the desirable Fitzrovia neighbourhood, within easy walking distance from Soho, Oxford Street, and many other Central London attractions. 25 EP (Eccleston Place) is an elegant co-working space located in upmarket Belgravia. Or check out Work + Play located near Finsbury Park which offers ultrafast WIFI, free Friday night drinks, and free home-brewed tea and coffee. Whilst, perhaps the most prestigious office location is Mayfair, nestled next to Oxford Street, Hyde Park, and Green Park. Here is where many of the city's wealthiest conduct their business.

Connecting with family and friends

Of course, for many from the UAE London has been a second home for many years. So unsurprisingly buying London property can also provide an opportunity to join these individuals in one of the world’s great social cities. The café culture and close proximity to public spaces, heritage, and vibrant art scene ensure that meeting colleagues, family, and friends is always enjoyable.

If you’re a UAE citizen considering a short-term or permanent relocation to London, a summer getaway, or a new business venture,  then please get in touch with Harry Derrick or Paige Bennet our UAE based mortgage brokers.

Enness Global is the go-to trusted international broker for high and ultra-high-net-worth individuals and entrepreneurs. With offices in both Dubai and London, as well as other prestigious locations, we are well located for those in Dubai seeking to buy or do business in both locations.


The views and opinions expressed in this piece are those of the author and do not constitute advice or a recommendation. They do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of Enness and are not intended to indicate any market or industry viewpoints or those of other industry professionals