First NOBU Hotel to open in Abu Dhabi

The premium Japanese restaurant chain NOBU, which is part-owned by the Hollywood actor Robert De Niro and Giorgio Armani among other shareholders,  has signed a preliminary agreement to operate a luxury hotel on Reem Island.

Set to open in 2014, the Nobu Hotel would include about 200 hotel rooms, 80 apartments and a branch of its restaurant, created by the celebrity chef Nobuyuki Matsuhisa. Reem Investments, the master developer behind the US$ 8 billion Reem Island development, reported it had "signed a non-binding letter of intent" with Nobu Hospitality to manage the planned hotel.

The move follows other agreements for Nobu-branded hotel openings in Las Vegas and Saudi Arabia. Hotels represent the latest expansion move by the Nobu brand since its New York flagship restaurant opened in 1994.

As for the Abu Dhabi Nobu Hotel, it will also include residential apartments, said Ho Kiam Kheong, the chief development officer at Reem Investments.