UAE: Dubai Shopping Festival 2016 bids farewell after unwrapping unique experiences

UAE: Dubai Shopping Festival 2016 will conclude on February 1, after offering residents and visitors from around the world the opportunity to ‘Unwrap The Exceptional’ in shopping, winning, entertainment and take home many memorable moments of a 32-day retail extravaganza that started on January 1.

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DSF 2016 has lived up to its promise of staging the most exciting events and activities and offering the world’s best shopping experience for the whole family at shopping malls, souks, and retail outlets.

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A range of themed events, celebrity appearances, world-class entertainment including the Dubai Arabic Concerts created exclusively for DSF 2016 by Rotana and featuring iconic Arabic singers, numerous promotions and life-changing raffles offering millions of dirhams worth of prizes were among the great memories of the 21st edition of the world’s most rewarding festival. And for those shoppers who spend a few more days in Dubai after DSF, they have more chances to win the prize of their lifetime, as the Infiniti Mega Raffle and the Nissan Grand Raffle will continue to be held until February 6.

With an array of over 150 activations and attractions, DSF 2016 highlighted Dubai’s position as a family tourism destination and the region’s retail hub for leading home-grown and international brands.

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The Dubai Shopping Festival worked closely with its strategic partners, key sponsors and retailers to bring shoppers a new experience during its 21st edition. Focusing on four distinct segment of the retail sector, shoppers were invited to unwrap the experiences presented underthe Beauty, Gold & Jewellery,Apparel & Fashion and Perfumethemes – giving both regional and international brands the chance to shine in the numerous themed activations.

DSF 2016 was organised by the Dubai Festivals and Retail Establishment (DFRE), an agency of the Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing (DTCM) . DFRE attributes the success of DSF year to the exceptional support extended by its strategic partners and key sponsors.

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DFRE’s Strategic Partners for 2016 are: Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank, Emirates, AW Rostamani Group, Al Futtaim Group, The Dubai Mall, Majid Al Futtaim Properties, Mercato Mall, Paris Gallery, ENOC, Nakheel, Dubai Duty Free, Meraas and Etisalat. In addition, the Key Sponsors of DSF 2016 are: Visa, Jumbo and Global Village.

Unwrapping the Highlights of DSF 2016

Unwrap The Beauty Within

The Beauty Theme saw the unique Beauty District activation giving international and boutique regional stores the chance to highlight their fantastic products, as well as introduce brand new skincare products to shoppers.

The 21st edition of DSF also saw a Beautycon pop-up store open in the newly created Beauty District. Beautycon, in partnership with DSF, brought a number of beauty icons to Dubai for the first time, such as Bethany Mota, Hrush Acheyman, Teala Dunn and Sondos Qattan. Shoppers were able to meet and take pictures with their favourite beauty icon, as well as pick up beauty tips from tutorials and makeovers.

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Paris Gallery has worked closely with DSF to create a fascinating experience for shoppers, leaving them with great memories. Shoppers were able to win free makeovers, as well as AED5,000 worth of make-up products. Key make-up artists from the region held tutorials for fans in Paris Gallery including Hrush and Zukreat.. Rodial and Eisenberg also held tutorials for shoppers to give them tips and tricks on how to get the most out of their products. The beauty theme was also celebrated across the city, with special activations taking place in Galleries Lafayette, Bloomingdales, and Wojooh.

Unwrap All That Glitters

High-end jeweler Dhamani, in collaboration with DSF, hosted a private event for their VVIP guests at Dhamani 1969 at The Dubai Mall to unveil seven unique diamond rings designed by renowned Italian jewellery designer Luciano Ponticello. The Guest of Honour at the event, which launched the Gold and Jewellery Theme was iconic Arab singer, Assala Nasri.

Korloff hosted a special event at their boutique in The Dubai Mallto launch their newest bridal collection with Guest of Honour, the renowned Arab singer Balqees. The Korloff event also featured an exclusive in-store dinner for the distinguished guests.

Bloomingdales held a workshop for shoppers and guests on the uniqueness of gemstones, while Harvey Nichols took shoppers through a short course on diamonds to enlighten customers on the diamond industry and tips and tricks to help them look after their own jewellery.

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Roberto Coin, luxury jeweler, held their own showcase of three special collections – Falcon Collection, Tanaquilla Collection and Fantasia Collection. Each offered guests a chance to take a journey inspired by cultures from around the world.

Samra Jewellery also held a special activation with celebrity fashion influencer,Roaa Al Sabban. The two have collaborated with each other for the first time during the Dubai Shopping Festival to bring forth a unique 18K gold bracelet, which went on sale during the Dubai Shopping Festival.

Unwrapping The Best Of Style

The ‘Fashion Central’, at Mall of the Emirates, gave shoppers a great area in one of Dubai’s leading malls to enjoy the Apparel and Fashion theme of DSF and to be introduced to ‘New to Dubai’ fashion brands and collections. The luxury Italian Couture brand, Billionaire, DKNY and Max Azira launched their newest fashion lines during DSF 2016.

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Jamaican American popstar, OMI, renowned internationally for his hits Cheerleader and Hula Hoop and luxury brand Etoile ‘La boutique’ joined hands to stage the ‘Fashiontainment’ activation at Mall of the Emirates, which saw a unique fusion of fashion and entertainment.

Three amazing locations – Al Fahidi, Burj Plaza and Meena Bazaar – each provided shoppers the unique ‘Street Runways’ activation. Al Fahidi District had models strutting through the alleyways of the Al Fahidi historical district; at Burj Plaza in Downtown Dubai with the world’s tallest building, the Burj Khalifa, as a backdrop, DSF visitors saw S*uce showcase a new line of clothes. The Meena Bazaar ‘Street Runway’ focused on bridal fashion retailers highlighted by an Indian wedding procession showcasing some of the fantastic fashions and unique styles. Paris Gallery presented the hair and make-up for each of the ‘Street Runways’.

The ‘Fashion Express’ – an in-mall ‘flashmob’ with a ‘pop up’ look and feel took place at Ibn Battuta Mall and Dubai Festival City Mall. The fantastic ‘Fashion Express’ drove customers to different stores across both malls, giving each a chance to show potential shoppers what amazing deals they had.

The first ‘Fashion On Ice’ activation at The Dubai Mall was another a big hit of DSF, giving shoppers a chance to see professional ice skaters perform great routines while showcasing clothes from Galleries Lafayette.

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The ‘Cover Pop-up Shop’ (DSF Edition) took place at The Lounge, Fashion Avenue, the Dubai Mall. It featured 15 Abaya designers from around the region, carefully selected by Hessa Al Falahi – the Founder of ‘Cover’ – to showcase their latest collection of Abayas to guests.

Unwrapping The Art Of Fragrance

The Perfume Avenue was the star attraction of the Perfume-themed activations, at City Centre Mirdif, hosting influencers, celebrities, perfume experts, as well as exhibitions on perfumes, all for shoppers to enjoy. There were special sessions for shoppers to participate in which saw entrepreneur sessions; perfume launches and perfume making workshops take place, all to help inspire shoppers and make their visit to DSF even more special. The Perfume Theme featured a special appearanceby Supermodel Alessandra Ambrosio, who followed it up with a Meet-and-Greet opportunity with fans at the Perfume Avenue.

Shoppers enjoyed the chance of experiencing 6 niche local and regional brands – Lootah perfumes from UAE; Suhad perfumes by Suhad Qenaei from Kuwait; “NE’EMAH” perfumes by Mohammed Ne’emah from Kuwait; ANFASS perfumes by Asim Kasim from UAE); AJ Arabia by Ali Al Jaberi from UAE and Jealous Gallery by Abduljabar Al Harthi from UAE.

A number of special events took place including, the Annick Goutal Historical Fragrance exhibition, the Ajmal Perfume Museum, the 10 Most Expensive Perfumes Exhibition at Perfume Avenue in City Centre Mirdif and the Biggest Perfume Spray event in City Centre Deira which will see perfume being sprayed simultaneously from a range samples.


Unwrapping A Winning Smile

The Dubai Shopping Festival is well known for the amazing chances it gives people to win, and it is no different during the 21st edition of the festival with the Infiniti Mega Raffle and Nissan Grand Raffle giving shoppers more chances than ever to change their lives for the better.As part of the Infiniti Mega Raffle, shoppers were able to win a QX70, as well as 200,000 AED, every day of the 32 day long festival. The Nissan Grand Raffle gave lucky winners the possibilities of winning one of eight Nissan cars. Each day saw the draw of the winners for both raffles take place at Global Village live on stage. Both the Infiniti Mega Raffle and Nissan Grand Raffle will continue to be held until 6 February.

There were even more amazing chances for the shoppers to win great gold prizes in the ‘100 Winners in 32 Days’ promotion run by the Dubai Gold and Jewellery Group while community malls in Dubai also offered shoppers the chance to win gold prizes in a promotion run by the Dubai Shopping Malls group (DSMG) with the final winner of the raffle draw on the last day of DSF being able to win a kilo of gold. In another promotion organised by DSMG in community malls, shoppers had a chance to ‘Shop, Play & Win.’ And drive home with a fantastic Nissan Pathfinder every week .

Unwrapping Amazing Activations

Market Outside The Box was a unique outdoor retail space that gave emerging brands the chance to showcase their products, while there were many home-grown entertainers and F&B vendors set up in the market. Fashion stalls with fabulous clothes for men, women, and children, accessories for men, and women, as well as home appliances were available at the Market OTB.

‘Disney’s Sparkling Frozen Forest’ – a special activation based on Disney’s globally acclaimed animated film, “Frozen was a family friendly experience gave visitors to CITY WALK, the dynamic outdoor destination by Meraas, a great winter wonderland experience.

Global Village, Dubai’s leading family entertainment and cultural attraction, offers a unique shopping experience at several pavilions, each representing a different country. Visitors to Global Village are welcomed into a diversified but united world of joy, colours and rhythms to explore the world, one pavilion at a time.


Luxury French House, Hermes, opened the doors of its exceptional ‘Wanderland’ exhibition to the public on 22 January during DSF and will be continuing up until 7th February. The fascinating exhibition, which made its debut in Asia in Dubai during DSF 2016 is built on an area of 1000 square metres of The Dubai Fountains.

BEATBOX at BOXPARK introduced visitors to a fantastic activation that brought to life a variety of activities like creating your own music on an interactive giant piano while taking in the entertaining performances of box drummers, hand drummers, oud players and guitar players.

Shoppers werealso able to experience fantastic fireworks every weekend during DSF at three prime locations, THE BEACH, opposite JBR, Dubai Creek Park and Global Village.

With yet another successful edition of Dubai Shopping festival, DFRE has once again reminded the world why Dubai is considered one of the most unique tourism destinations.