Abu Suma will be one of the country's largest ever tourist schemes, including 10 hotels

Developer Al Arabia will start construction work next year on a 10 million m2 tourist resort on the edge of the Red Sea next year, the company said this week.

Al Arabia, a subsidiary of Al-Ahly Real Estate, is to start building work on the Abu Suma resort in Egypt by mid 2009.

The scheme, 45km south of Hurghada city at Soma Bay, is sited in one of Egypt's developing tourist areas, known as Shhab Abu Ramada, or “the aquarium”.

Speaking on the sidelines of Mipim Horizons, Deanna Abuseda, Al Arabia marketing executive, said that the scheme was scheduled for completion in 2013. She said: “The market in Egypt is not changing too much at the moment despite the global market situation. We have the paperwork done on the scheme and are expecting to start building work next year.”

Al Arabia is to build the first phase of the development, a marina and golf course, together with the main infrastructure for the whole development, itself. The company is seeking investors to take on development in the rest of the scheme, which will be divided into roughly 15 plots.

The scheme will be one of the largest tourist developments ever built in Egypt. It will include 10 hotels, 15,000 private homes and two Greg Norman signature golf courses. It will also contain a commercial district designed to resemble a souk, or Egyptian marketplace.