Whether you’re planning to move to Doha or you’re in the process of looking for a new apartment as your current contract nears its end, here are some of the best areas to live in Qatar. The list covers various criteria including safety, affordability, location and convenience.
Until a few years ago, Al Sadd was the most desirable place to live in Qatar. Over the years, it’s become moer busy. It still has its charm, though, with beautiful apartments surrounded by every imaginable convenience. From shopping malls and cafés to essential services and hospitals, everything is nearby and if you’re willing to spend a little extra time in traffic to get in and out of the area, you’ll enjoy all the perks of living in a vibrant city.
Slightly away from central Doha and located off Salwa Road, Al Waab is a peaceful locale that’s just perfect for families. There are luxurious compounds with beautifully furnished homes and some of them are even affordable. A lot of schools and nurseries are located in Al Waab and Aspire Zone is just a stone’s throw away, so if you’re an active family with school-going kids, there isn’t a better area for you. Villaggio is around the corner as well and the area is now connected with a metro station, too.
Dafna is quite a vast locale with plenty of accommodation options perfect for big families or even those who want to share. It’s more economical than living in West Bay with all the benefits of living in West Bay. There are loads of restaurants and cafés for the outgoing and very short travel times to the business district – approximately five minutes. A sharing room in a villa can cost you anywhere upwards of QR5,000 and a full-fledged villa with four or more bedrooms will cost you upwards of QR15,000 per month.
If you’re looking for a well-landscaped and brilliantly planned city, this upcoming business district has a lot going for it besides just affordable rentals. There is a beautifully done Corniche, plenty of coffee shops, upcoming restaurants and malls, amusement parks and five-star hotels lined up. You can currently find a two-bedroom apartment for as low as QR7,000 per month and a studio for as low as QR4,000 per month. Lusail is located right next to The Pearl-Qatar and if you drive further down, you’ll reach the main areas of West Bay. There are metro stations in the area, too, but not all are fully operational yet.
Markhiya gets major points for its location. This area is predominantly residential but West Bay is approximately ten minutes away and there are at least five malls within a ten-minute drive from the area. The only disadvantage is the area has no buildings and comprises of only low-rise row houses and compounds. If you’re happy to share a villa, you can find rentals for as low as QR4,000 per apartment. A standalone four-bedroom villa can cost you anything upwards of QR12,000. There are loads of restaurants nearby including our popular haunt for budget eats MRA.
If a little construction noise and a few extra minutes of being stuck in traffic doesn’t bother you, then Musherib is an excellent locale to consider. Musherib is the heart of Doha and geographically speaking, there’s no better location in Qatar. You can find luxury accommodation, budget homes and everything in between to suit all price ranges. The older apartments can cost as low as QR4,000 and a luxury apartment can cost you anywhere between QR5,000 and QR8,000. The main Doha Metro station is located here, so even if you’re spending a little extra on rent, almost all parts of Doha are easily accessible for just QR2.
Msheireb Downtown Doha
Located in Musherib, this is the world’s first fully sustainable downtown regeneration project. The plush new area is beautifully constructed with walking streets, tall buildings and open spaces. There are schools, museums, shopping centres, restaurants and plenty of cafés. Three five-star hotels are located here as well and you can spend you weekends at the town square (yes, we finally have one in Doha). The accommodation can get pricey here, but anything new and shiny in Doha is always going to set you back a few thousand extra riyals. It is, however, the cultural hub of the city with the Corniche, Souq Waqif and the museums located very close. A tram with 18 stops also runs around the Msheireb Downtown Doha area.
If you’re looking to go all out and live in ultimate luxury, The Pearl-Qatar is just perfect for you. With themed vicinities, brilliant apartments, beach access and an overall incredible vibe, this area is every expat’s dream. From balconies with sea views to Venice-themed villas overlooking the canals, you can find innovative housing solutions. There are four main areas – Porto Arabia overlooking a marina with luxury yachts and a walkway lined with restaurants, cafés and retail outlets, Medina Centrale with Spanish street names, some of the best restaurants and the only hypermarket in The Pearl, Viva Bahriya that’s right across Medina Central with a private beach for residents, and Qanat Quartier, modelled behind Venice with canals integrated into the architectural plan. Qanat Quartier also has a private beach for residents. Some of Qatar’s most expensive accommodation can be found here and even if you’re going for a tiny studio apartment, you’ll not spend anything less than a minimum of QR5,000, excluding bills. It’s also worth noting that electricity bills are higher here due to the district cooling facility in the entire area.
Living in Qatar’s most vibrant business district has its own advantages. You could live on the 50th floor of a towering skyscraper or live in a fully serviced apartment at an enviable location – in one of the five-star hotels. It’s definitely not cheap, and easily one of Qatar’s most expensive areas, but you’ll be close to all the hotels, restaurants, clubs, bars, cafés and most probably, your office. The views from here are stunning – most of the apartments overlook the Arabian Sea. Two minutes on the road will bring you to the Corniche from where you can easily access other areas in the city.
For affordable places to live near West Bay, click here.
For budget areas to live in Qatar, click here.