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SHA Wellness shares vision for “world’s first healthy living island” in UAE

07 May 2024
Spanish wellness brand SHA Wellness Clinic is busy preparing to bolster its wellness portfolio in 2026 with a hyper-exclusive island wellness enclave in AlJurf, UAE.

SHA Emirates Island at AlJurf – created by Abu Dhabi-based development partner IMKAN – will bring together a SHA Wellness Clinic, a health resort, 137 beachfront residences and multiple pavilions dedicated to health and wellbeing.

The 12.5-hectare site will be set amid hundreds of thousands of planted trees that form a verdant forest in the middle of the desert, so guests will always be immersed in nature.

The forthcoming opening will herald the second phase of SHA's ambitious global expansion strategy – following the successful inauguration of SHA Mexico in January 2024, which marked the brand's inaugural venture beyond Spanish borders.

“The destination is being created following an investment of AED600 million (US$163.4 million, €146.8 million, £124.5 million) and will include 110 treatment rooms, 120 suites and a large real estate component with 150 residences,” said SHA vice president Alejandro Bataller in an exclusive interview with Spa Business.

“Our dream is to create the world’s sixth Blue Zone – places which are recognised as having the highest concentration of centenarians. We envisage a tranquil wellness island, surrounded by nature, that will be an escape from busy city life. It will be a real first for the region and attract travellers from around the world.”

SHA says the destination will offer an entirely new residential model for the region wholly centred on wellness, while ensuring that every resident enjoys the highest standard of wellbeing and tranquillity.

Bataller added: “We travelled to dozens of locations in search of the perfect natural environment, warm weather and accessibility to create the world’s first fully integrated wellness island and found everything we could imagine and more at the seaside destination of AlJurf.”

The low-density UAE development will be home to a range of onsite amenities, including:

Customised wellness and fitness programmes:
• An on-site spa for relaxation and rejuvenation as well as high-end medical treatments.
• A Holistic Pavilion focused on mental and spiritual wellbeing with yoga and meditation.
• A Wellness Kids Club.
• A Sports Pavilion for fitness enthusiasts and athletes.
• Community space and events.
• A Marine Pavilion offering a schedule of water sports and sea activities.
• Exclusive Club Access.
• A Family Pavilion for family-centric activities and leisure
• A Beach Club.
• Bike paths.

A team of international and local architects and designers – NMDC, SAOTA, HBA, SIEC and OTAK – have been assembled to make this vision a reality.

SHA Emirates Island was created with the aim to achieve the WELL building certification System, from Delos, a global authority on green building standards and practices.
Prioritising natural materials, organic design and landscaping with existing vegetation will support the healthy living concept unique to the Island.

Within the residences, a range of passive design strategies, such as thoughtful orientation and the integration of wind and shading elements, play a pivotal role in minimising energy consumption.

Furthermore, the incorporation of energy-efficient appliances, intelligent monitoring and control systems, and solar-powered heating and electricity sources underscores their dedication to sustainability.

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