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Dubai's floating Carrefour supermarkets to serve boats, yachts

Dubai's retail explosion is extending out to sea.

[DUBAI] Dubai's retail explosion is extending out to sea.

Majid Al Futtaim Holding, the Middle East operator of Carrefour stores, has created sail-through supermarkets to cater to customers on yachts, boats and jet-skis on three of the city's beaches, the company said in an emailed statement.

Shoppers on jet-skis and small sailing craft will be able to sail up to an "Aqua Pod" and order at the window while passengers on larger vessels can order by phone for delivery within 45 minutes. The floating supermarkets offer more than 300 products from snacks and fresh foods to sunscreen and over-the counter medicines.

"With Dubai's stunning coastline being enjoyed by millions of people each year, it is a natural next step to cater to our customers with relevant products in a locale where they are not currently being served," said Miguel Povedano, chief operating officer of Carrefour UAE. "It's exciting to know that we can reach our customers anywhere, whether it be land or sea."

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While Carrefour explores untapped territory, Dubai's land-based retail sector has become glutted as an explosion of malls and shopping centres faces slowing spending from residents and tourists. Dubai is set to see retail space surge by 50 per cent over the next three years, real estate adviser CBRE Group said in May.