FACT chats exclusively to the cast at the premiere of the show.
As STARZPLAY and Image Nation Abu Dhabi launch the new reality TV show, Million Dollar Listing UAE, we talked directly to the stars. The Emmy-nominated franchise started in the United States in 2006. Now, it is releasing the first international version, and it is already the talk of the town.
Riad Gohar joined the stellar cast, and swapped pharmacy for real estate. “I sell homes and I love it”, he smiles. He has been in Dubai for more than 20 years, and is the Partner, Co-founder and Managing Director of BlackOak Real Estate.
Why did you come to the UAE?
I have lived here for almost 20 years, and been in the industry for more than 18 years. I came on a pharmaceutical role, and worked for one of the leading, multinational companies as a pharmacist. I did that for a few years. I then sold real estate, and started investing. It was great and I dived into it, and it has been beautiful ever since.
What was the most expensive place you’ve sold?
So, a single ticket last year, I sold AED 68 million. About a year and a half ago, I sold AED 209 million. Then, almost 16 years ago, I sold a building for AED 700 million, which was in Business Bay.
What trends are you seeing in the property market?
So, if we talk about Dubai, it’s a need-by-supply economy. Dubai builds infrastructure and brings people. As the leaders have great vision, they keep bringing people from all around the world. There is no single nationality that I can focus on. South East Asia has been a dominant nationality, but it has also moved to a European market. Europeans are buying because of the stability of Dubai, especially post-Covid. They saw how the leadership in Abu Dhabi and Dubai was brilliant, so everyone started moving and making the UAE their home.
What top tips do you have for buyers?
Like anywhere in the world, you have to think about your location and the exit strategy. If I’m going to buy a home, does this qualify for a resale, will I get a tenant and a buyer? You have to always think of how you will exit. Deal with a broker that you trust. If you travel around the world or you’re not living here anymore, they can assist you.
What was the best part of filming?
Meeting the incredible cast. Working with Image Nation Abu Dhabi and STARZPLAY was phenomenal. Getting to showcase properties and showcasing to the whole world what I do for a living, why I love it and creating memories. I love finding someone a home and putting a smile on their face, and showing that on TV is phenomenal.
What did you learn about yourself while filming?
I am still learning about myself.
What’s the most millionaire thing you’ve done?
Well, everybody does live this life in Dubai. It’s easy to do it here. The best thing is to not get tempted so much. We have all had time enjoying a yacht or a nice car. The most millionaire thing I have done is buying my home in Emirates Hills, which I love.
Why should people watch the show?
You will see a diverse cast from all around the world – Canada, Egypt, Morocco, the United States and the United Kingdom. You see a glimpse into some of the finest real estate properties, not just in the UAE but around the world. You will our personal stories, and see how we orchestrate our daily activities with our family, obstacles and struggles.
GO: Visit https://starzplay.com for more information.