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Defence Park is a popular recreation spot

Defence Park is a popular recreation spot

Located at the banks of the Soan River and accessible via Grand Trunk Road, Phase I, DHA has evolved into one of Rawalpindi’s most upmarket residential enclaves.

Safe and serene… Phase I is a secure and serene neighbourhood, far removed from the bustling city life of Rawalpindi. It is dotted with sprawling, multi-storey houses, with wide, tree-lined roads that ensure that traffic jams are next to nonexistent.

Shopping, dining and more… Defence Mall is a small market located in the centre of Phase I and primarily houses myriad high-end salons and retail outlets, as well as dining venues. Of these, Milano Nights, an Italian restaurant is a firm favourite, thanks to its pizzas, while Jungle Restaurant specialises in desi delights including haleem, nihari and tikka boti. Meanwhile, Butterfly Restaurant, Gloria Jeans and Jameel Sweets are more trendy and informal spots and attract Rawalpindi’s fashionable set. Several grocery stores, tailoring shops, banks, bakeries and roadside cafes are located in a small commercial pocket near Defence Mall and cater to residents’ every day needs.

A multi-storey house in Phase I

A multi-storey house in Phase I

Recreation, education and healthcare… Defence Park, with its 65-feet high waterfall and paved jogging tracks, buzzes with families and fitness enthusiasts alike and has become the neighbourhood’s most popular recreation spot. A significant number of reputable hospitals and schools have a presence in Phase I, and due to their establishment, property prices have increased substantially in the last five years.

The real estate take… Phase I is classified as a premium residential area; property prices have appreciated by approximately 30% and rentals by 12% in the last five years. Development work on several housing projects is underway due to an increasing demand for houses.

A commercial pocket near Defence Mall

A commercial pocket near Defence Mall

In a nutshell… Despite being a relatively recent development, Phase I, with its modern facilities and amenities, has an undeniable, ‘small town’ charm, making it one of Rawalpindi’s most prestigious residential areas.

– Wajiha Malik

First published in the Real Estate Section of The DAWN National Weekend Advertiser on May 18, 2014.

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