Petrochemicals consultant and contemporary art collector Ramin Salsali Petrochemicals consultant and contemporary art collector Ramin Salsali

A Dubai businessman reportedly lost an estimated $350,000 (AED1.3 million) of art works when two of his apartments were destroyed in The Address Downtown hotel fire on New Year’s Eve, Arabian Business reports.

Ramin Salsali, a petrochemicals consultant and contemporary art collector who owns and runs a private museum in Al Quoz, claims to have lost a number of paintings and sculptures, including works by Iranian artist Amir Hossein Zanjani and US-based painter George Condo, The National reported.

Salsali owns four apartments within The Address Downtown and said two of them were destroyed in the blaze, including his private residence. Another apartment, which was used by a member of his staff, reportedly suffered smoke damage while the fourth suffered damage to light fittings.
He spoke out this week urging The Address owner Emaar Properties to quickly process residents’ compensation claims as well as repair the property.

“They already announced that they are going to repair the building, if it is repairable,” Salsali was quoted as saying. “They are assessing right now with an engineering company whether the structure has been damaged.

“Now, everything will narrowed down to one point: how Emaar will compensate the owners or the tenants of the building.”

Salsali claimed that his private residence, which he said was destroyed in the fire on January 31, had a tougher safe installed than the standard model provided by the hotel.

But this safe was completely destroyed in the flames – “completely melted,” he said, “it’s unbelievable.”

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But the businessman had failed to take out specific contents insurance believing that this was included in the service charge he paid to Emaar.

He said: “The maintenance fees that we paid – there is one item that says insurance for the contents of the household.

“When you read this, you’re not going to do any insurance as such because first the building is insured, and second the content is covered. That was the assumption, and it’s written on the detailed cost list.”

Emaar has been contacted for a response.

Earlier this week, a report from Dubai Police claimed that the fire was caused by a fault in the electrics wired into the building.

However, the full investigation by Dubai Civil Defense is still ongoing and Emaar is understood to be awaiting the outcome of that before issuing a statement to the public outlining what action it will take.

Salsali said: “The whole world is now watching. The effect on real estate is unbelievable. People have pulled out of contracts where they don’t know about the fire safety of the cladding. It’s not good for Dubai.”