The Symphony Style File
Feeling Festive!Posted in The Symphony Style File on: 21/12/2011
Listen to this and pretend! ‘Baby it’s Cold Outside’ by Dean Martin
We Heart Festive Fingers | It’s time to shake up that manicure! Have fun with glitter, embellishments and festive designs…
We recommend: Sister’s Beauty Salon, The Dubai Mall for a luxury, comfortable setting and heaps of talon options including Shellac (long lasting), Nail Rock (Temporary nail art stickers) and nail art including glitter, sparkles and anything else you desire. Tip: Take a picture of the nails you want and give it to your technician to copy.
We Want Perfect Party Hair | Experiment with curls, braids, up-dos and big, big, big hair this holiday season…
We recommend: Paula at the CNB Salon in Downtown Dubai. Tip: Again, take a picture of what you want and show it to your stylist – or even better, email it in advance so they have time to think. Most hair styles sit better and last a lot longer when hair is two – three days old. Dry Shampoo is your friend!
We Need New Party Dresses | Go that extra mile this season – whether it is trying new lengths, colours or going against the grain; stand out at the party…
Prabal Gurung Cruise 2012 at Symphony, The Dubai Mall
Willow Cruise 2012 at Symphony, The Dubai Mall
Jonathan Saunders Cruise 2012 at Symphony, The Dubai Mall
We recommend: Symphony at The Dubai Mall obviously! Tip: You can pretty much guarantee that everyone will be wearing some form of gold/sequin/sparkly number this New Year’s Eve. Stand out from the crowd and show your fashion prowess by rocking some of the Spring/Summer 2012 trends early – lemon, mint and raspberry hues will be huge next season and can be found in the new Cruise 2012 collections. Keep it festive (and a little more classy) by sporting your gold/sequin/sparkle in your accessories.
We Crave Red-Carpet-Worthy Make-up | Pull your festive look together and try something special this party season…
We recommend: Have fun experimenting at home before the big event, take your time and take pictures to see what works. Youtube make-up tutorials. Use pictures of your style icons for inspiration. Google old movie stars such as Greta Garbo and Marilyn Monroe; play a character! Tip: Cheat with semi-permanent eyelashes which will ensure you are red-carpet-ready in next to no time. Sister’s at The Dubai Mall are the best – choose from dramatic, natural or slightly va-va-voom (last up to 4 weeks, start at 350dhs)
xoxoView Comments / Make a Comment
Born to Die by Lana Del ReyPosted in Music Monday, The Symphony Style File on: 19/12/2011
MUSIC MONDAY | A spine-tingling, live version of Lana Del Rey’s new single ‘Born to Die’
Do you want to see your favourite song feature as a Music Monday?Tweet us the link or artist & song name with the hashtag #musicmonday @SymphonyTweets
View Comments / Make a Comment
Cruising into Cruise!Posted in The Symphony Style File on: 13/12/2011
Cruise 2012 at Symphony, The Dubai Mall
When leathers, furs and other made-for-winter attire burst into the shops during Dubai’s 35 degree September we find ourselves counting down the days to December. Ah December. What a month! National Day, festive fancies and CRUISE. Cruising into Cruise. Finally. New lovely pieces that are fitting for the desert climate and offer up a subtle whiff of what’s to come for Spring/Summer. We have LOTS of lovely Cruise offerings at Symphony this season… Check them out for yourself!
ALICE by Temperley
A Mexican-inspired collection, ALICE by Temperley Cruise 2012 combines vivid Mexican colours with rich texture and multiple fabric techniques. Ranging from vintage Mexican peasant to traditional embroidered fabrics, the inspirations have resulted in a varied, ultra feminine collection that combines soft and feminine with bold acid bright and a touch of “gaucho”. Lace trims, embroidered cut out, print and cord work are given an edge with buttery soft laser cut leathers and tough biker styles. With the collection expanded to focus on proven successful categories from the past year, it is characterised by feminine, rich detail with a touch of attitude, now synonymous with the ALICE by Temperley line.
ALICE by Temperley Cruise 2012 is available at Symphony, The Dubai Mall now
Chris Benz imagines his clientele taking a sunbleached trip to the heady richness of the Bermuda for this Cruise offering. The salty pink seashore, the lily-scented fields, Caribbean sentient and crisp tradewinds. Dark & Stormies, and a washed, rumpled wardrobe of tumbled shirting, fraying tweeds, and sparkling paillettes are essential for this perfect holiday. American sportswear at its most heightened level – the concept of resort dressing is vibrant and rich against the Bermudian landscape, which forms the inspiration for the Cruise 2012 collection. Rich navy, charcoal, and greyed greens intermingle with fluro-brights, graphic stripes, radiant primary hues, and tonal neutrals. Packable, simple, easy, ageless and effortless.
The Chris Benz Cruise 2012 collection is coming soon to Symphony, The Dubai Mall
For Cruise 2012, Clements Ribeiro have created a capsule collection in collaboration with The Museum of Everything. The Museum of Everything is Britain’s first museum for the undiscovered, untrained and uninternational artists of the modern world. Exhibition #4 – which opened in September this year in London – featured hundreds of rarely seen drawings, paintings and sculptures from studios for contemporary artists with developmental disabilities. Suzanne Clements and Inacio Riberio, the husband and wife duo behind the Clements Ribeiro label, have chosen their favourite artists and artworks from the show to create a kaleidoscopic wardrobe of colourful and monochromatic prints, celebrating the artworks, the artists and creativity itself.
Clements Ribeiro x The Museum of Everything Cruise 2012 exclusively available at Symphony, The Dubai Mall now
When legendary American label Halston launched its diffusion line in 2009, style-setters like Sarah Jessica Parker immediately fell for its Studio 54-inspired take on modern glamour; later becoming ‘Creative Director’ for the Autumn/Winter 2011 season. The brand has perfected its timeless appeal by giving signature archive pieces an effortlessly elegant contemporary spin. Channel its signature retro-chic style in draped one-shoulder gowns, fluid jumpsuits and tuxedo-style tailoring.
The Halston Heritage Cruise 2012 collection is coming soon to Symphony, The Dubai Mall
For his 2012 Cruise collection, Jason was inspired by the bold colours and architectural details he admired on a recent trip to Old San Juan. With this as his starting point, Jason also added touches of surf wear and a relaxed sportif style influenced by the West Coast attitude. The result is a graphically bold collection with dressed down ease. This luxurious collection uses many details including leather trim on a tweed bomber, guipure lace jackets and metallic lace dresses. Jason wanted the contrast of the leather trims to add an element of boyish toughness to the collection. In contrast, an ultra feminine black metallic lace dress is embroidered with hundreds of silver florets.
The Jason Wu Cruise 2012 Collection is coming soon to Symphony, The Dubai Mall
Scottish born print designer Jonathan Saunders graduated from Glasgow School of Art in 1999 with a BA in printed textiles, going on to graduate from Central Saint Martins in 2002 with an MA with distinction in printed textiles. Saunders debuted his first collection for Spring/Summer 2004 during London Fashion Week, receiving such praise that British Vogue featured the collection on the front cover of the January issue; an accolade not seen in over fifteen years for non-advertisers. For Cruise 2012 Saunder’s replaced Autumn/Winter’s floral prints and strict silhouette with Victorian wallpaper motifs and voluminous lines. Out went the pencil skirts and in came fuller versions with below-the-knee lengths; a pair of evening options in silk had a billowy languor.
The Jonathan Saunders Cruise 2012 Collection is exclusively available at Symphony, The Dubai Mall now
For the evolving wardrobe of the Michael Angel woman, Cruise 2012 incorporates a mix of chic solids, smart suiting and as always, a bevy of punctuating prints. The collection merges traces of previous season Fall 2011 with an injection of ideas from upcoming Spring 2012, resulting in a truly seasonless offering. Inspired by a photograph of colour-blocked chairs by Jehs+Laub for Knoll, the Cruise 2012 colour palette consists of saturated raspberry reds, deep teals, grape and sunshine yellows. “It’s not the obvious freshness – it’s warmer than that,” Angel explains. These hues are brought to life in sun-faded linen, silk twill, sand-washed crêpe de Chine, hybrid tweed and various jacquards. In addition to the intricate fabrications, Cruise 2012 also showcases the continuous evolution of print as Angel elaborates on technique and application. Artwork is repeated, scaled, and paneled for the first time ever, resulting in an original patchwork, micro-plaids and original stripes that are fused together unapologetically.
Michael Angel Cruise 2012 is exclusively available at Symphony, The Dubai Mall now
Many of the world’s most stylish women are devotees to one of the biggest names in fashion; Naeem Khan. Committed to adorning the elegant women in clothes befitting their refinement, his glittering fan base of starlets and socialites included Beyonce, Eva Longoria, Penelope Cruz, Carrie Underwood and Katherine Heigl as well as First Lady Michelle Obama and Queen Noor of Jordan. His luxurious collections consist of impeccably cut dresses, sophisticated gowns and chic separates – all embroidered by hand. Khan was born in India and grew up surrounded by the beauty of his culture, architecture, history and design. He cultivated his vast knowledge of textiles under his the watchful eyes of his grandfather and father; both well known in India for designing intricate clothing worn by the royal families. His Cruise 2012 collection has already been worn and coveted by First Lady Michelle Obama. The breathtaking offering features a seriously amazing “Cinco de Mayo” dress with an off-the-shoulder peasant bodice and a trailing, fitted skirt that used 26 different colored threads, took over 1,000 hours to create.
Naeem Khan Cruise 2012 coming soon to Symphony, The Dubai Mall
Cruise 2012 marks Opening Ceremony’s first-ever resort collection. The theme? A happy-go-lucky tour around the world’s music festivals.Tripping on a magical vision of early Glastonbury—endless fields, flowers, and flowing hair — prints take center stage with bouquets spilling down billowing skirts, breezy dresses, and ruffled shorts. And, in honour of the year of the rabbit (the year in which Carol and Humberto – the duo behind Opening Ceremony- were born), each print plays home to a hiding OC bunny. When the sun sets and the music’s still playing, multi-tonal knits are the perfect answer to sweater weather. Pile up blossoms, stripes, acid brights, and swathes of sheer silk, and it’s a regular love-in!
The Opening Ceremony Cruise 2012 collection will be available at Symphony, The Dubai Mall soon!
‘Global Soul’ and ‘Urban Spirit’ are the words Ports 1961 defines itself by. Energised by the international community, Ports takes a multicultural approach to design. Each collection represents a modern culture, associating high performance with luxury and comfort. Ports attention to detail and modern styling is transitioning the way women dress to accommodate a postmodern lifestyle where elegance must meet her every day needs. For Cruise 2012 Cibani has taken a fresh approach to the Ports 1961 collection, focussing on tailoring, suiting clean lines and structure.
Coming soon to Symphony, The Dubai Mall
The Prabal Gurung Resort 2012 collection is inspired by the portraits seen throughout the “George Condo: Mental States” exhibit that was showcased at the New Museum and Yayoi Kusama’s uniquely vibrant aesthetic. Kusama’s art channels the free love moment of the 1960’s with her bright pop colors, polka dot motifs and colorful, floral prints. The silhouettes are relaxed including A line day dresses and sheaths, youthful cocktail dresses inspired by the 50’s, slouchy menswear detailed shirting in exuberant prints and textures, cropped jackets with hardware and long, lean pants. The colour palette is composed of bright pink, yellow, green and orange with an incorporation of neutrals such as khaki, black and white. Fabrics this season include washed silk gazar, cotton faille, printed fille coupe bow detailing, woven cotton, canvas matelasse, silk and cotton matelasse and colorful intarsia knits inspired by vintage prints.
Exclusively available at Symphony, The Dubai Mall now
Taking classic feminine references such as 1930’s Hollywood glamour and delicate dancers uniforms, Nicoll has subverted these to create a Resort collection that is modern yet luxurious in it’s graphic simplicity, ease, and wearability. Silk camisole dresses with godet skirts, colour blocked silk vest dresses, structured jacquard pieces, and lurex knitwear in form the basis of a collection that is modern, delicate, luxurious – signature Richard Nicoll to the core. A vibrant and fresh colour palette of cornflower blue, neon pink, beige, optic white, and gold metallic is used across fabrics including an art deco patterned jacquard, printed stripe silk, sheer georgette, and lurex knit. This is all bought together by prints in collaboration with artist Linder Sterling that, as Tim Blanks said on style.com “provide a welcome graphic jolt, with her surreal and twisted collages”.
Coming soon to Symphony, The Dubai Mall
Thakoon Panichgul’s, born in Thailand, raised in Omaha and now New York-based, creations blend various distinct influences with dynamic ingenuity. His work is an examination of innovative construction. His collection imparts a feminine spirit, poised elegance and an underlying hint of playful wit. Prior to launching his own label, Panichgul spent four years as a writer and editor for Harper’s Bazaar, eventually, he decided to try his hand at design, leading him to enrol at Parsons School of Design. In September 2004, Thakoon presented his first ready-to-wear collection, quickly becoming one of fashion‘s most celebrated talents to emerge from the New York scene. In 2006 Thakoon was one of 3 recipients of the Vogue/CFDA Fashion Fund and also has been nominated by the CFDA for the Swarovski Award for Best Emerging Womenswear Designer. The Thakoon Addition label allows Panichgul to experiment and try new things – and to retry what has worked before. For Cruise 2012 he toyed with the idea of denim but softened it, cutting motorcycle vests and even a snap-off long trench in sky blue georgette that resembled chambray. Tie-front shirtdresses, flouncy miniskirts, and maxi dresses and caftans in Panichgul’s signature vivid prints (including a flat, graphic rose that recalled the blooms in his main collection).
Coming soon to Symphony, The Dubai Mall
Tibi’s Amy Smilovic has reworked classic best sellers for this wearable, packable Cruise 2012 collection. Pared-down pieces like a narrow pencil skirt cut from soft, blush-colored lambskin or a semi-sheer blouse with leather trim exemplify the designer’s approach. The collection also features Smilovic’s eponymous glittery party dresses – just in the knick of time for New Year’s Eve.
Coming soon to Symphony, The Dubai Mall
Inspired by Paul Poiret’s unstructured glamour and the unique art of hand woven textiles, designer Kit Willow collaborated with an Indian artisan to create the exclusive textural fabrics that feature throughout the ‘Industrial Artisan’ collection for Cruise 2012. It is the fusion of traditional and contemporary techniques, where the past meets with the future to create a modern collection. Weaved strips of silk satin and organic cotton thread were hand-worked to realise a textural jacquard effect. In total, five meters of strip cut silk satin were hand woven to create just one metre of the unique jacquard. This hand woven textile inspired the digital print. The silk crinkle print skirt with a built in organza pant is the statement print piece. From hand to machine worked, rubber was fused together using innovative technology – no traditional thread-stitch is evident. The rubber is lazer cut in old world broderie anglaise patterns and fused together to create a skirt and a modern wedding gown. Structured corsets with deep v necklines cling to the feminine form with 1950s powernet. Reflective of an era past, the metal seed beads were hand woven with cotton and linen in rectangular shapes and draped to form a loose drape jacket, dress and top.
Coming soon to Symphony, The Dubai Mall
Fresh, radiant and optimistic Zimmermann’s Halcyon Days stirs memories of the idyllic, light-filled days of summer. Designer Nicky Zimmermann expertly balances sharp, modern technique with a touch of nostalgia and the result is the pure embodiment of holiday serenity where everything seems to glow. Built on a tranquil progression of white and natural tones, the collection sees earthy textures worked into structured geometric paneling, hand-worked lace effects and graphic cutaway details. Vivid pops of colour and inimitable prints punctuate this base of calm with long, sleek lines playing on every movement. The ethereal lightness of breezy layers and embroidered linen is tempered by strong tailored touches seen in crisp cap sleeves and collars. Accessories take the form of sublime caramel leather wrapped armor-like around the ankle in stilettos with tubular metal heels and sandals, while bags and clutches in this same smooth hue are embossed for a touch of bohemia. Sexy yet refined, the silhouettes are such an inspired combination of distinctive design and reminiscent influence that Zimmermann continues to reinvigorated the contemporary notion of daywear. This latest collection follows a busy start to the year for the iconic brand that is celebrating twenty years in business and opened its first permanent US store on iconic Robertson Boulevard in Los Angeles in May 2011.
Available now at Symphony, The Dubai Mall
Symphony | Ground Floor, Fashion Avenue | The Dubai Mall +971 (0)4 330 8050
Night Air by Jamie WoonPosted in Music Monday, The Symphony Style File on: 12/12/2011
We love this song by Jamie Woon as recommended by Emirati Artist/Photographer Saeed Khalifa in the Autumn/Winter 2011 edition of The Symphony Edit Magazine
Do you want to see your favourite song feature as a Music Monday?Tweet us the link or artist & song name with the hashtag #musicmonday @SymphonyTweets
View Comments / Make a Comment
A very special eventPosted in The Symphony Style File on: 05/12/2011
As you may have seen, Symphony collaborated with Oxfam for our 1st Anniversary hosted by global fashion icon and Vogue Nippon Creative Director Anna Dello Russo raising 36,000dhs for their amazing cause in a special charity auction. To continue our support we wanted to highlight this incredible event – a once in a lifetime opportunity and an amazing way to conclude 2011… by doing helping such an incredible cause….
The Dubai Cares & Oxfam Charity Gala - taking place at the iconic Armani Hotel, Dubai on 10th December 2011 will be hosted by the global stars of cinema, the Gala will feature exquisite hospitality, an auction of ‘money can’t buy’ experiences, and world-class entertainment.
Among the unique items being auctioned are two tickets to the world premiere of The Avengers, with the opportunity to meet Scarlett Johansson, a Pablo Picasso masterpiece, an exclusive IWC Tourbillion Hand-Wound watch and a once in a lifetime chance to have a private yoga class and set tour of 30 Rock with Alec Baldwin.
The Gala event will also feature a raffle draw with exceptional prizes, including the signet ring worn by Colin Firth in the Oscar-winning film The Kings Speech. The night will be brought to a close by a performance from world renowned artist Ronan Keating.
To support this amazing cause, book tickets to this exclusive event and to view the Gala Brochure, please visit www.oxfam.org.uk/oxfamgala
We hope to see you there and a million thank you’s to each and everyone of you for supporting our philanthropic endeavours in 2011… here’s to many more for 2012!
Happy 40th National Day UAEPosted in The Symphony Style File on: 02/12/2011
Our beloved home, the UAE, turns 40 today. To celebrate we asked the Symphony Style family “What do you love the most about the UAE?” via our Twitter and Facebook pages. Read our favourite answers in this special celebration post as well as the plethora of reasons why we love the UAE.
@munoor I LOVE the Burj Khalifa tower… So beautiful! <3 it
@tasneemphoto that they have invested so much into parks, beaches and nature. Make us forget that this used to be a desert!
@Nay_Ala no matter what people say, I love that we actually have all of the freedom we need and are one of the few countries who are being supported by the government. Yaay UAE biladi <3
@PearlyLooks It's where my heart belongs #UAE <3
@AnnaDelloRusso Dubai is like an oasis in the desert. I love the mentality and attitude and the glamourous sweet local ladies that I met when I recently visited in October.
@itshollywould the YES attitude and the endless opportunities. The rich culture and the beautiful local people that I have been lucky enough to meet. Mashallah!
@_cocowe_ Simply the unity of the country is love itself <3
@maisonraina The UAE is home
@HMDalmansoori the individuality of each Emirate complementing a UNITED Arab Emirates
@sarankjones it's vision!
To think that forty years ago today, on December the 2nd 1971, the UAE was officially born under the guidance of Our Father Zayed is just mind boggling. To see the country as it is today and to consider that just 14,600 days ago it mainly consisted of baron desert is amazing. Mashallah mashallah mashallah! The 40th anniversary of our home is an important landmark and no matter who you are – Emirati, expat or visitor – or what you are… No-one can deny the great debt we all owe to the UAE and it’s leaders for it’s generous opportunity, love and hospitality. Long live the UAE!
Our Father Zayed. The late Sheikh Zayed.
One man’s vision was the catalyst for the UAE as we know it today. Forty summers have passed since the union was formed, and in each passing, and as the sun goes down on each day, the spirit of Our Father Zayed still shines brightly. It shines because it lives on within the people, it is a spirit that can be shared with anyone who wants it, and it knows no boundaries. Forty years ago, the people of the UAE came together to say they are as one. Under the leadership of the late Sheikh Zayed, the nation was formed and in this process a spirit was born. During his memorable lifetime, the late Sheikh Zayed believed in the generosity and kindness of the people of the United Arab Emirates. The affection he bestowed upon his people emanated from his faith in humanity and trust in the belief that every person has selflessness built within them to care for others and their community. He asked the people to act as one. He asked that the union stand the test of time. He asked for a spirit of union. It is this spirit, his spirit, which needs to be celebrated and shared. How many other leaders would – or have – respond(ed) with such generosity, love and compassion to the people in the face of such sudden wealth and power? Mashallah. Sheikh Zayed is and was one in a zillion.
‘The Union lives within me and it is the dearest thing in my whole existence.’
-The late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan
Watch this old British TV series documenting Sheikh Zayed and the UAE (part 1 of 6) for a fascinating glimpse at how things looked in the UAE some 40 years ago…
The Burj Khalifa
Our beloved Burj Khalifa – the world’s tallest structure at 829.84 m (2,723 ft) opened on the 4th of January 2010. The triple lobed footprint of the building was inspired by the flower Hymenocallis. The tower is composed of three elements arranged around a central core. As the tower rises from the flat desert base, setbacks occur at each element in an upward spiralling pattern, decreasing the cross section of the tower as it reaches toward the sky. There are 27 terraces in the impressive Burj Khalifa. At the top, the central core emerges and is sculpted to form a finishing spire. A Y-shaped floor plan maximizes views of the Persian Gulf. Viewed from above or from the base, the form also evokes the onion domes of Islamic architecture. During the design process, engineers rotated the building 120 degrees from its original layout to reduce stress from prevailing winds. At its tallest point, the tower sways a total of 1.5 m (4.9 ft).
The jaw-dropping Burj Khalifa opening ceremony
Sheikh Rashid bin Saeed Al Maktoum
Sheikh Rashid bin Saeed Al Maktoum was born in Dubai in 1912, the same year his father Sheikh Saeed Al Maktoum became the Ruler of Dubai. Sheikh Rashid received his education in Al Ahmadiya School, the oldest school in Dubai. When Sheikh Rashid’s father passed away in 1958, he took over the rule of the emirate. Sheikh Rashid was not new to the political scene at that time as he was actively helping his father, the late Sheikh Saeed, managing the emirate’s affairs. His long years of experience were reflected in his performance later as the Vice-President and the Prime Minister of the United Arab Emirates. During his rule, Dubai grew tremendously from a small trading town into a major cosmopolitan city and a commercial hub. New schools, houses, roads, bridges connecting the two sides of the city, and ports connecting the emirate to the World were built during his time. When the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahayan called for the formation of the federation, Sheikh Rashid was the first to join on December 2nd 1971. He was keen to provide all the support to Sheikh Zayed, the founder of the union and his brothers, the rulers of the emirates. He was truly described as the co-founder of the United Arab Emirates.
Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan
The eldest son of Sheikh Zayed, Khalifa was appointed as Ruler’s Representative in the Eastern Region of Abu Dhabi and as Head of the Courts Department in Al Ain in 1966, as his father Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan became the new ruler of Abu Dhabi. Zayed was the Ruler’s Representative in the Eastern Region. A few months later the position was handed to Tahnoun bin Mohammed Al Nahyan. On 1 February 1969, Sheikh Khalifa was nominated as the Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi, and on the next day he was appointed as the Head of the Abu Dhabi Department of Defense, in which post he oversaw the building up of the Abu Dhabi Defense Force (ADDF), which later became the nucleus of the UAE Armed Forces. Following the establishment of the UAE in 1971, Sheikh Khalifa became the Prime Minister of Abu Dhabi (and head of Abu Dhabi Cabinet, under his father), Minister of Defense and Finance. The President of the UAE and the Emir of Abu Dhabi – he succeeded to both posts on 3 November 2004, replacing his father Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, who had died the day before. He had effectively been acting president earlier, since his father was ill during the period prior to his passing.
Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum
Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum (born July 22, 1949), is the Prime Minister and Vice President of the United Arab Emirates and absolute monarch of Dubai. Al Maktoum, his sons, and his daughters are known to be avid enthusiasts of traditional Arabic poems and arts, and take part in projects to aid developing countries such as Jordan, Egypt, the Palestinian Authority and Yemen. He writes poetry in Nabati (colloquial Arabic). The family are also sport enthusiasts, especially in horse and camel racing. For example, in the 15th Asian Games in 2006, his son Rashid took the individual gold in Endurance, his sons Rashid, Ahmed, Majid, and Hamdan took the team gold in Endurance, his niece Latifa took a bronze in Show Jumping, and his daughter Maitha led the UAE team in taekwondo. Dubai continues to flourish and prosper under Sheikh Mohammed’s guidance.
Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque
A wonder to behold, Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque was initiated by the late President of the UAE, H.H. Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan. His final resting place is located on the grounds beside the same mosque. As the country’s grand mosque, it is the key place of worship for Friday gathering and Eid prayers. It is the largest mosque in the UAE and numbers during Eid can be more than forty thousand people. Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque Center (SZGMC) offices are located in the east minarets. SZGMC manages the day to day operations, as a place of worship and Friday gathering and also a center for learning and discovery through its educational cultural activities and visitor programs. The library, located in the north/east minaret, serves the community with classic books and publications addressing a range of Islamic subjects: sciences, civilization, calligraphy, the arts, coins and includes some rare publications dating back more than 200 years. In reflection of the diversity of the Islamic world and the United Arab Emirates, the collection comprises material in a broad range of languages including Arabic, English, French, Italian, Spanish, German and Korean.
Camels have been a part of the region for decades – since the bedouin days. Used for racing, milk, travel and transport, even in this modern era camels are extremely important and loved by the people of the UAE. To see camels in their natural habitat take a trip to JBR beach, an unlikely location granted, but here you will find an Emirati man living the bedouin lifestyle right on this stretch of shore with his two camels earning a modest living providing tourists with camel rides. A legend if ever we saw one!
The Dubai Mall
As the home of Symphony, The Dubai Mall has a special place in our hearts. The Dubai Mall is the world’s largest shopping mall based on total area and sixth largest by gross leasable area. It is a part of the 20-billion-dollar Burj Khalifa complex, and includes 1,200 shops. Access to the mall is provided via Doha Street, rebuilt as a double-decker road in April 2009. Dubai Mall opened on November 4, 2008, with about 600 retailers, marking the world’s largest ever mall opening in retail history. The Dubai Mall recorded a visitor turn-out of more than 60,000 tickets sold for the Dubai Aquarium and Discovery Centre in the first five days, following its opening. The Dubai Mall hosted over 37 million visitors in 2009, and attracts more than 750,000 visitors every week. While in 2010 it hosted 47 million, and saw footfall increase by around 27 percent over 2009, despite the economic crisis. Just a few steps outside the mall you will find the awe-inspiring, jaw-dropping Dancing Fountains, Souk Al Bahar and the best view of the Burj Khalifa in the whole of Dubai.
The Dubai Fountain, the world’s tallest performing fountain, lining the waterfront promenade of The Dubai Mall will perform to the UAE National Anthem from December 1 to 3, every day at 1pm, 7pm, 9pm and 11pm.
Karak / Tea with Milk / Chai Haleeb
Karak tea was introduced to the Gulf through the Indian Sub-Continent. It is a strong and dark tea that is mellowed with full-cream milk and warm spices. Loved by the locals and asian expats, this is the unofficial official drink of the UAE.
One whiff of this delicious woody, musky scent and we are instantly transported back home to the UAE. Favoured by many locals and expats alike in perfume form, oud is also regularly burnt in homes using a special oud burner and charcoal. Hospitality is extremely important in the Emirati culture and oud is often burned to create a welcoming ambience. At local weddings, ignited oud is presented to guests sat at tables who then waft the deliciously scented smoke over their necks and hair. Oud is also used by many to ‘smoke’ the traditional dress, which is why you will often smell it when an Emirati walks by. Delicious.
40 years ago and more – when cosmetics from the likes of Chanel and MAC were not as easily accessible as they are now, local women would decorate themselves with natures beauty product – henna. Used and beloved to this day, henna adorns the limbs of many women when a special occasion, such as marriage, is called for it. There are many designs to choose from and many are unique to Emirati culture. Henna is also used for a plethora of other purposes including ailments.
The Abra and The Dubai Creek
As the location of our inaugural campaign with Raina Hein, the Dubai Creek is also very close to our hearts. The original ‘hub of Dubai’, the Dubai Creek was where most of Dubai’s business took place before oil was discovered. The Abra is the traditional Arabic boat – a vessel used for pearl diving many moons ago; which was the greatest source to Dubai’s economy. To this day the Dubai Creek remains a hustle and bustle of spice and gold souks, abra rides and energy. It is also home to the beautiful Bastikya area – a creative hub featuring inspiring art galleries and designed with traditional souk architecture in mind.
There are two main ways of preparing Arabic coffee. Traditional coffee brewing, more common in Najd and Hijaz, is flavor-rich with cardamom, and sometimes other spices like saffron (to give it a golden colour), cloves, and cinnamon. Some people add a little evaporated milk to slightly alter its color; however, this is rare. Note that this traditional method uses coffee beans that are not roasted, so it is a beverage entirely unlike what most people think of as coffee. It has a special coffee pot called dalla (Arabic: دلة) and the coffee cups are small but with no handle. The portions are very small, covering the bottom of the cup. It is served in houses and in good restaurants by specially clad waiters called gahwaji, and it is almost always accompanied with dates. It is always offered with the compliments of the house and is free. It is also offered at most social events like weddings and funerals. Another method, more common in the Levant, is based on the Turkish coffee brewing method, at times with cardamom added, others plain or قهوة سادة qahwah sādah (lit. “plain coffee”). If you are drinking Arabic coffee you must remember to shake your cup from side to side to signal that you are done and do not want any more!
The Traditional UAE Dance: Ayyalah and Yowalah
The Ayyala, an ancient dance form that emulates battle, is one of the more fascinating forms of Arabic dance practiced in the UAE. The Ayyalah is accompanied solely by drums. The leader of the ensemble is the big drum, known as Al-Ras. Its solid, deep voice sets the beat for the three smaller Takhamir drums. The ensemble is sometimes completed by the use of copper cymbals. The dance is performed by at least 25 men, and sometimes by as many as 200. They stand in two rows, facing each other, arms linked. As they wave camel sticks in front of them, they sway back and forth to the beat and each row sings, in a declaration of challenges and boasts to the opposite side.
Falconry is one of the oldest traditional valued sports in UAE dating back almost 2000 years, reflecting the bedouin love for it . It was a sport originally enjoyed only by the rich Sheikh’s and also used as a means to source food such as “harees” and “houbara” for the tribe. Falconry, an integral part of desert life for many centuries, was practiced originally for purely practical reasons, i.e. the necessity to supplement a meager diet of dates, milk and bread with a tasty hare or well-fed bustard. In time it developed into a major sport enjoyed by rich and poor alike. They were also used in conjunction with “Saluki ” hunting dogs to chase and hunt down gazelles. The falcon itself, known as the “Saqr” is a bird that is much admired by Arabs because of its fascinating beauty, posture, sharp eyesight and grandeur. The Sheikh Zayed Falcon Release Project, a national avian research center, aims at reintegrating birds of prey into the wild with the purpose of studying their migration patterns. The birds are fitted with small mobile transmitters in order to monitor their movements. In order to preserve the falcon population, only the birds which are free of infections are selected and released into the wild.
Equestrianism and Endurance Racing
The Arabian or Arab horse (Arabic: الحصان العربي [ ħisˤaːn ʕarabiː], DMG ḥiṣān ʿarabī) is a breed of horse that originated on the Arabian Peninsula. With a distinctive head shape and high tail carriage, the Arabian is one of the most easily recognizable horse breeds in the world. It is also one of the oldest breeds, with archaeological evidence of horses that resemble modern Arabians dating back 4,500 years. Throughout history, Arabian horses spread around the world by both war and trade, used to improve other breeds by adding speed, refinement, endurance, and strong bone. Today, Arabian bloodlines are found in almost every modern breed of riding horse. The Arabian developed in a desert climate and was prized by the nomadic Bedouin people, often being brought inside the family tent for shelter and protection from theft. Selective breeding for traits including an ability to form a cooperative relationship with humans created a horse breed that is good-natured, quick to learn, and willing to please. The Arabian also developed the high spirit and alertness needed in a horse used for raiding and war. This combination of willingness and sensitivity requires modern Arabian horse owners to handle their horses with competence and respect. The Arabian is a versatile breed. Arabians dominate the discipline of endurance riding, and compete today in many other fields of equestrian activity.
The Corniche, Abu Dhabi
The Corniche runs almost 6 km from the Sheraton Hotel to the Hilton Hotel. There are several gardens lined all along the Corniche around the coastal boulevard that borders the city. The late, great ruler of Abu Dhabi, Sheikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan, loved greenery and gardens and fountains. Another important feature of the city is the fountains which can be seen on every intersection of the Corniche. With the modern buildings facing the sea for the background, it is one of the most picturesque sites in Abu Dhabi. Some of the sensational sandy beaches of Abu Dhabi are located along the seafront Corniche.
The National Anthem
The National Anthem of the United Arab Emirates, (Arabic: النشيد الوطني الإماراتي), also popularly known as Ishy Bilady (عيشي بلادي; ‘īšiy bilādī; literally, Long Live my Nation), was officially accepted as the United Arab Emirates’ national anthem after the formation of the country in 1971. The anthem was composed by Saad Abdel Wahab, who also composed the national anthems of other Arab states, including that of Libya. The lyrics to the anthem, officially adopted in 1996, were written by Arif Al Sheikh Abdullah Al Hassan.
Adorable kids singing the UAE National Anthem
Charity is extremely important in the UAE and we at Symphony are so proud to have been able to support two important causes in the 12 months since Symphony has been open; raising funds for both FACE Africa and OXFAM Charity with your generous support and help. Zakat, the Islamic ‘charity tax’ which encourages Muslims to donate a percentage of their earnings to charitable causes, is considered to be a religious duty, and is expected to be paid by all practicing Muslims who have the financial means (nisab). In addition to their zakat obligations, Muslims are encouraged to make voluntary contributions (sadaqat). We don’t know many other countries that have had charity donation options on ATM machines for as long as they have been active here and we are so thankful to live in a country where charity is vital to each and every inhabitant.
Happy National Day Symphony Stylers! We love you! Bisous