John Varvatos Enters Middle East With Dubai Mall Store

John Varvatos has made a move into the Middle East.
The New York-based men’s brand on Tuesday night opened a 2,937-square-foot store in the Fashion Avenue section of the Dubai Mall.
The store, which is the 31st retail unit for the label, is part of a geographical licensing deal with Casa Vida, which is part of Emaar Properties, a real estate firm that owns the Dubai Mall, according to Mark Brashear, chief executive officer of John Varvatos.
Under the terms of the deal, Brashear said, Casa Vida will open two additional stores in the Middle East over the next 18 months. The locations have not yet been identified, he said. “We’re looking at a couple of different options.”
Emaar operates over 6.7 million square feet of retail space in Dubai and also owns the Dubai Marina Mall, Souk Al Bahar and the Gold & Diamond Park, according to its web site.
The addition of Varvatos is part of the expansion of the fashion and lifestyle offerings at the Dubai Mall that involves adding another 1 million square feet and 150 new brands to the Fashion Avenue area of the mall. The company has a goal of attracting over 100 million visitors in the next three to

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Dior Opens New Boutique in Dubai Mall

TRADING UP: Dior is the latest luxury brand to make a statement in Dubai Mall’s recently opened Fashion Avenue extension.
The French fashion house has opened a boutique in the exclusive section of the shopping mall, which is home to luxury brands including Louis Vuitton, Gucci, Hermès and Chanel. This replaces its previous unit in the mall.
The store, which offers women’s and men’s collections alongside jewelry and watches, is dotted with artworks and mirror-effect furniture, such as Guillaume Piechaud’s polished steel Galet table and Maria Pergay Gerbe’s console.
It features a herringbone-patterned parquet floor, nodding to house founder Christian Dior’s taste for 18th-century furnishings.
To mark the opening, Dior has created limited-edition products, including 30 pairs of J’Adior sunglasses and 16 pairs of crocodile-leather detailed sneakers.
There are also exclusive versions of Dio(r)evolution and Dior Addict bags; Dior Motion and Dior(r)evolution shoes; a Milieu du Siècle rose gold and diamond ring from the Archi Dior collection; a Dior Homme T-shirt with golden bee embroidery, as well as the BMX Serie 2 bike from the collaboration between Dior Homme and bike specialist Bogarde.
The brand also has two boutiques, one for women and one for men, in the Mall of the Emirates, in addition to a

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Lindsay Lohan Wishes Happy New Year 2018 in Video From Dubai

Lindsay LohanHappy New Year from Lindsay Lohan!
As millions of her fellow Americans prepare to ring in 2018 on Sunday, New Year’s Eve, the 31-year-old Mean Girls actress posted on her Instagram…

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The Dubai Design and Fashion Council and Vogue Arabia Award Fashion Prizes

DUBAI — The Dubai Design and Fashion Council and Vogue Arabia awarded three designers from the region the Fashion Prize earlier this week, an annual award going to the top talent from the Middle East. The designers represent three different categories: ready-to-wear, fine jewelry and accessories. The winners were chosen by a panel that included designer Reem Acra, Aquazzura creative director Edgardo Osorio, DDFC chief executive officer Jazia Aldanhani and Vogue Arabia editor in chief Manuel Arnaut.
“It’s wonderful to discover such promising new talent in the region,” said Osorio. Accra, who is on the board of the council, said: “The DDFC Vogue Fashion Prize is so important for the region. It empowers the new generation of designers.”
This year’s winners were:
Faissal El-Malak, Ready-to-Wear
Palestinian designer Faissal El-Malak grew up between Montreal and Qatar and studied in Paris before settling in Dubai. His work is rooted in his search for identity. “Both sides of my family are Palestinian refugees,” he said. “My identity was only based on ideas and memories of my grandparents. I didn’t have anything tangible until I discovered traditionally hand embroidered cushions and dresses that my mother had. That was the first time I had something that related to my identity.”
El-Malak

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Dubai Airshow: Boeing wins $15bn order from Emirates

Boeing strikes a Dreamliner deal as the Dubai Airshow awaits news of a key Airbus A380 order.
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This passenger-carrying drone will soon hit skies in Dubai

This passenger-carrying drone will soon hit skies in DubaiMeet the EHang 184 AAV. It’s the first one-person battery-powered drone to ever hit the skies. It was first unveiled at CES 2016 and has been making test flights in Nevada. The autonomous vehicle can carry one passenger at 60 miles per hour. The pilotless drone has eight rotors mounted in pairs on four folding arms for liftoff. EHang, the company that makes it, says it will be ready for consumers to purchase in Dubai in July. Source: https://www.cnet.com/news/a-passenger-carrying-drone-is-set-to-make-regular-flights-in-dubai/ More:



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Americans stuck in Dubai after ban tit-for-tat (Yahoo Sports)

Ban

Joseph Jones and J.P. Prince are stuck in Dubai after Iran retaliated to President Trump’s immigration executive order by banning U.S. citizens.



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Working and Living: Dubai (Cadogan Guide Working and Living Dubai)

Working and Living: Dubai (Cadogan Guide Working and Living Dubai)


This book uncovers the best places for you to move to. It gives specialist advice on dealing with all the red tape, from gaining visas and work permits to buying a property and moving in. It guides you through the settling in process, from education and healthcare to cellular phone services and banking. It puts Dubai into context with details on its political, economic and religious situation, and social behaviour. It helps with the challenges of finding a job, both working for other people and setting up your own business.
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Take a Tour of Huda Kattan’s Dubai Office

Step inside the office of Huda Kattan, beauty blogger, founder of an international beauty empire, and the woman behind Kim Kardashian’s go-to lashes.
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Boudoir dressing? Walk-of-shame chic? However you name it, there’s nothing more luxurious—or unexpected—than subbing some upgraded loungewear for a slinky slip dress at this year’s holiday fetes. (Just add some bijoux and a good pair of heels and you’ve got one glamorous outfit.) See how five Allure editors style their favorite bedtime staples for a night out.
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Working and Living : Dubai

Working and Living : Dubai


Buy Working and Living by Sarah Woods in Paperback for the low price of 17.35. Find this product in Travel > Middle East – General, Special Interest – Business Travel, International – General.
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Middle Eastern Designers Gain Strength in Dubai

DUBAI — In a region known for its affinity for luxury brands, the appetite for regional designers has been slow to develop. But if the latest edition of Dubai’s Fashion Forward is any indication, that mind set is beginning to change.
More than 75 regional buyers turned out for the four-day event, which included 23 runway shows and presentations, panel discussions and showroom events.
“We started Fashion Forward two years ago to heighten awareness for the design talent we have in this market,” said Bong Guerrero, founder of Fashion Forward. “This platform is the starting point and as the industry becomes more mature, the content keeps getting better, buyers are more interested and consumers more aware.”
Shireen El Khatib is a retail executive known as one of the pioneers in retailing in the region, having introduced countless foreign brands into the market since the early Nineties, from Gucci to Giorgio Armani and department stores Bloomingdale’s and Harvey Nichols. Now she is launching an innovative new concept store called Macramé, focused solely on Middle Eastern brands. Slated to open at the end of the year, the store will be the first of its kind, offering a platform to both established and emerging designers across

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Scorpions Drummer Jailed: James Kottak Reportedly Sentenced For Offensive Behavior In Dubai

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — Newspapers in the United Arab Emirates are reporting that the American drummer for the rock band Scorpions has been sentenced to one month in jail after being convicted of offensive behavior in Dubai.

The government-backed National newspaper reported Tuesday that James Kottak was convicted of insulting Islam, raising his middle finger and being under the influence of alcohol while in transit at Dubai airport. The Gulf News daily says he was arrested April 3 en route from Russia to Bahrain, where the German band was scheduled to perform at a Formula One race. Kottak was a no-show at the April 5 concert.

The newspapers say Kottak admitted to drinking but denied other charges.

The Scorpions’ manager didn’t respond to requests for comment. Kottak’s local lawyer couldn’t immediately be reached.
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Dubai

Dubai


This book is an ideal stop-over guide to Dubai, which attracts over six million arrivals per year. It highlights the city’s myriad shopping options, souqs, malls and shopping centres; is the only Dubai guide with detailed fold-out colour maps; and has concise, opinionated reviews of the best of the city’s hip eateries. The United Arab Emirates is the cheapest place in the Middle East to buy electronics. The Palm resort is visible from outer space. Dubai has the worlds only seven-star hotel, Burj al-Arab, where each suite has its own private butler. Dubai’s multicultural population (more than three-quarters of the population are expats) means restaurants of every description, from Russian to Indo-Pakistani. Sheikh Ahmed Al Maktoum, a member of Dubai’s ruling family, won the UAEs first ever Olympic medal (gold, of course) at the Athens Olympics, and features in this guide.

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$1499 (+$649 Tax) for a 7-Night Sightseeing Tour of Dubai with Flight & 4-Star Hotel Included ($4496 Value)

City: Toronto
Start Date: January 06, 2014
End Date: January 13, 2014
Value: $ 4496
Price: $ 2148
Purchases: 1
Purchases required: 1

Highlights:

  • Experience the magical and majestic city of Dubai for 8 days and 7 nights!
  • Your daily sightseeing tours are completely taken care of as you visit the capital, go on a Dune Safari, take a Moonlight Dhow Cruise and more.
  • Stay for all 7 nights in the upscale Star Metro Deira Hotel with its spacious accommodations and modern amenities.
  • The hotel features warm and luxurious decor, a world-class restaurant, and is in a convenient downtown location.
  • Enjoy breakfast every morning at the hotel.
  • Check out the Full Itinerary here!
  • Experience the best of both the metropolis and countryside as you visit local markets, villas, palaces, museums, mosques, and the only 7-star property in the world, the Burj Al Arab Hotel.
  • Check out the Optional Activities for high tea at the Burj Al, visiting Sharjah and Al Ainor, or a tour of the Burj Khalifa, the tallest tower in the world!
  • All flights, transfers, accommodations, transportation and taxes will be included.

Buy Details:

  • Includes a 7-night sightseeing tour of Dubai.
  • Complete Travel Package includes international round-trip flight, inbound and outbound airport transfers, accommodations in the Star Metro Deira Hotel, all breakfasts, 2 dinners, taxes, free Wi-Fi, and all sightseeing tours with transportation (including free shuttle to the beach) and guide listed on the itinerary.
  • Please call in to register your preferred date with the agency before purchasing. Call Monday – Friday between 10am – 5pm, and
    Saturday – Sunday between 12pm – 6pm (EST).
  • To Book and Register, please call 416-231-8185 or toll-free at 1-866-222-0086.
  • You must book before Feb. 10th.
  • You may call in to book one hour after purchase when your voucher becomes active.
    1. Departure Cities: Toronto, Montreal, Calgary, Edmonton and Vancouver.
    2. Departure Dates: March 7 and April 8, 2014.
    3. Please see write-up for full pricing.
  • Prices are per person but based on double occupancy. Fee for single occupancy is $ 399. Flights are with Air Canada and Lufthansa, or British Airways direct from Calgary or Vancouver.
  • Refunds can only be provided before flights are booked. Afterwards, no refunds are allowed.
  • Entrance to Burj al Arab and shopping tour is not included in this offer.
  • Please Note: your email address and phone number will be provided to Exotic Vacations in order to organize the tour.
  • Unlimited buys and unlimited gifts. Tax included.
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Description:

Strangely familiar yet wildly exotic, the land of Dubai will wow your senses and leave an imprint like no other with its combination of culture, architecture and extravagance. Experience a 7-Night Sightseeing Tour with Flight Included with today’s deal from Exotic Vacations:

  • TORONTO
    • $ 1699 (+$ 649 in taxes) per Adult departing on March 7, 2014.
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    • $ 1699 (+$ 649 in taxes) per Adult departing on April 8, 2014.
  • CALGARY
    • $ 1849 (+$ 649 in taxes) per Adult departing on March 7, 2014.
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    • $ 1849 (+$ 649 in taxes) per Adult departing on March 7, 2014.
    • $ 1999 (+$ 649 in taxes) per Adult departing on April 8, 2014.
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    • $ 2049 (+$ 649 in taxes) per Adult departing on March 7, 2014.
    • $ 2149 (+$ 649 in taxes) per Adult departing on April 8, 2014.

Situated in the United Arab Emirates, Dubai is truly unlike any other place in the world. The towering architecture reaches towards the clouds and stand out on the horizon with a skyline that rivals any Western metropolis. Mixing urban extravagance with old world customs, you’ll experience the best of both worlds and then some with today’s deal for a 7-night sightseeing trip courtesy of Exotic Vacations. Not only will you be provided with international round-trip flight, but you’ll also have the pleasure of staying in the 4-star Star Metro Deira Hotel. While staying in this luxury hotel, you’ll appreciate the modern amenities provided in your room such as satellite TV, climate control, walk-in closet and marble bathroom.

Your week-long tour begins with a journey around the downtown core of Dubai as you can marvel at the modern architectural wonders as well as taking in the history of older mosques and museums. Next day, travel to Abu Dhabi and visit the local markets, take a stroll down the coast and see the many villas and palaces—this is the perfect opportunity to take some pictures of the scenery and the people. The next two days promise equally exotic and enticing excursions: a Dune Safari and Moonlight Dhow Cruise. The first takes place in the desert at a traditional Arabian campsite with tents, a dinner feast, and belly dancers as entertainment. For the cruise, you’ll sail down the Dubai Creek and enjoy dinner and fragrant Arabic coffee while the night sky is lit up by a mix of moonlight and the glow of the city. The trip wraps up with a visit to the world’s only 7-star hotel and a shopping spree to some of the world’s most extravagant indoor mall complexes.

Expires: February 10, 2014
Image Link: http://static.teambuy.ca/deal/708×333/other/28161998-2014-01-06-28161998–Tour-of-Dubai_main_2.jpg
Merchant: Exotic Vacations Inc.
Merchant Link: http://www.exotictours.ca/


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Live from the Dubai International Film Festival: Wednesday, Dec. 11

2013-12-12-lunchbox.jpg

Another strong day at the Dubai International Film Festival kicked off for me with a morning press screening of a film I tried to see at the Karlovy Vary International Film Festival this past summer – but was denied because of a breakdown in the subtitle technology.

Ritesh Batra’s The Lunchbox has toured the film festival circuit since then and will open in February 2014 in the U.S. It’s a soulful, thought-provoking tale featuring two central performances that can’t help but stir you.

Nimrat Kaur plays Ila, a Mumbai housewife who dutifully cooks her husband a lavish, multicourse lunch, which she packs in a metal tiffin box. Then a courier picks it up and delivers it by train to the office where her husband works.

(The film’s opening is a brief but fascinating short-course in an incredibly complex lumch-delivery system in Mumbai that somehow seems to work, despite what seems like a dependence on old technology and systems.)

But on this day, her careful preparation of curry, rice and more goes astray – and lands on the desk of a soon-to-retire insurance-claims examiner, Saajan, played by the amazing Irrfan Khan (best known to American audiences for his work in The Namesake, Slumdog Millionaire” and Life of Pi). He’d contracted with a diner near his apartment for lunch for years – but this food was significantly better. So he eats it all.

Which surprises Ila because, apparently, her husband never sends the used lunchbox back looking as though it’s been licked clean, the way Saajan did. She puts a note in with the chapatti bread the next day – and Saajan responds. Before long, they’ve struck up a correspondence, which deepens into an epistolary relationship, though they’ve never met.

The film is a marvel of understatement and intelligence, exploring the loneliness and regret two people are able to express to each other, perhaps because they are strangers. The correspondence changes their outlook, makes them a little more aware of their regrets – and of what they can do to get rid of those regrets and make a fresh start. As one character notes, “Sometimes the wrong train takes you to the right station.” These character studies make The Lunchbox a movie to be keenly anticipated by American audiences.

Louise Archambault’s Gabrielle” had the potential to be something cloying and awful, given its focus on a mentally challenged couple, their romance and the objections of the young man’s mother. Archambault cast Gabrielle Marion-Rivard, a young woman with Williams’ syndrome, in the title role – and she delivers a real performance (as does actor Alexandre Landry, as Martin, the young man she’s in love with).

This commentary continues on my website.
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Live from the Dubai International Film Festival: Monday, Dec. 9

2013-12-10-traitors.jpg

How bad can a film-festival day be when you see four movies – and only one of them is terrible? And the best one is the last one of the day?

That was my Monday at the Dubai International Film Festival.

The best film of the day was a joint production from Morocco, the United Arab Emirates and the USA: Traitors, a film by American filmmaker Sean Gullette (who was the star of Darren Aronofsky’s breakthrough debut, Pi).

Starring newcomer Chaimae Ben Acha as a would-be punk-rocker in Tangier named Malika, the film starts with her meeting with a producer, who tells Malika she likes her songs on the rough demo she sent her. So she’s willing to produce a real demo for Malika and her band, Traitors, and try to get them signed.

One catch: Malika has to come up with the money for the recording studio time, a fairly princely sum for an unemployed singer. “I’m a producer, not an ATM,” the producer notes.

Desperate, Malika takes a job that will earn her all the cash – but which could cost her more. She agrees to help a drug smuggler by driving an SUV into the mountains, where the car’s cavities will be filled with drugs. Then she and another young woman, Amal (Soufia Issami), will drive it back to Tangiers – through the various drug-interdiction roadblocks along the way. But the farther into the job Malika gets, the less she wants to do it.

There are not a lot of actual incidents in the film: no chases or shootouts. Yet Gullette creates real tension, through silences, quiet encounters with the drug lord and the extremely expressive face of Ben Acha. She looks like a cross between Rashida Jones and a young Joan Jett and has the tough swagger of Lisbeth Salander from the Girl with the Dragon Tattoo books. Issami also brings a blend of the callous and the vulnerable as her new acquaintance and partner in crime. It’s a strong, gripping film from start to finish.

This commentary continues on my website.
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