"New Zealand" has been sold for more than $NZ150 million and is being turned into a giant resort.
A collection of 14 artificial islands forming New Zealand and Australia on a Dubai reclamation project known as The World, has been sold to a Kuwaiti firm building a resort development called Oqyana – Oceania in Arabic.
The World's manager at developer Nakheel Properties, Adnan Dawood, said a "mega-resort" will be created there, the Gulf News Daily in Dubai reported.
Billions of dollars have been spent building 300 sand and rock islands that form a copy of all Earth's countries and continents.
The $US3.5 billion ($NZ4.6 billion) project will comprise a variety of luxury villas, pools and marinas skirted by private beaches and is expected to attract 7500 to 10,000 residents.
The project will feature a cultural centre, two hotels, 17 kilometres of inter-linked walkways, 15,000 metres of seafront and a marina with over 1500 private yacht berths.
Other islands on the "map of the world" development offer a golf island and an African safari island.
Dubai, one of seven semi-autonomous states of the United Arab Emirates, has ambitious plans to boost its thriving tourism industry to prepare for when its low oil reserves run out.
The concept has spread, with similar islands planned in other UAE emirates and Gulf countries, where economies are also booming because of the rise in world oil prices.
Environmentalists have criticised the island developments for destroying Dubai's only coral reef, turtle nesting sites, and disrupting natural currents.