Riyadh to host Saudi Arabia’s first Arab Fashion Week

L-R: Caroline Rush, CEO of the British Fashion Council; Princess Noura bint Faisal, honorary president of the Arab Fashion Council; Layla Issa Abuzaid, KSA country director at the Arab Fashion Council; and Jacob Abrian, founder and CEO of the Arab Fashion Council. (Ben Broomfield)
Updated 19 February 2018
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Riyadh to host Saudi Arabia’s first Arab Fashion Week

LONDON: Saudi Arabia is set to host its first Arab Fashion Week next month as part of a push to support aspiring Saudi designers and drive growth in the sector.

Princess Noura bint Faisal, honorary president of the Arab Fashion Council (AFC), announced the news to a small group of industry insiders and journalists in London on Monday morning.

Reading a letter from the General Entertainment Authority in Saudi Arabia, she said: “Saudi Arabia’s artistic community has been growing in size and in confidence for a number of years and the General Entertainment Authority believes that such an event will allow a proper platform to showcase their fashion and arts talents as the vehicle for a comprehensive range of entertainment options in Saudi Arabia.

“The General Entertainment Authority is proud to support an event that seeks to bring people together in a mutual appreciation of the power of fashion and art.”

The show, organized by the Arab Fashion Council, will take place from March 26 to 31 at the Apex Center in Riyadh.

Princess Noura told Arab News that the event would be open to designers from all over the world. “This event is just the beginning,” she said.

Layla Issa Abuzaid, Saudi Arabia country director at the Arab Fashion Council, said: “By launching the first Arab Fashion Week in Riyadh, we are aiming at more than to organize a world-class fashion event. We believe that to promote the fashion sector will support other economy sectors such as tourism, hospitality, travel and trade. Our fashion sector is among the fastest growing in the world.”

The AFC, which aims to unite 22 Arab countries under one umbrella, recently launched its regional office in Riyadh.

Saudi Fashion designer Arwa Al-Banawi, a regular exhibitor at Paris Fashion Week, has been eagerly anticipating the day when she can showcase her designs to an international audience in her own country.

“Saudi Arabia is becoming more and more developed and I’m seeing a lot of Saudi designers following their dreams, it’s a very special time for female empowerment and also for the world to see the beautiful creative talent in our country.”

“I can’t wait to have my first fashion show in Riyadh. I’m really excited that this is finally happening in my own country.”


Disappointed fans hail improved performance by Saudi Green Falcons but defeat ends World Cup dream

Updated 21 June 2018
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Disappointed fans hail improved performance by Saudi Green Falcons but defeat ends World Cup dream

  • A fan named Yousif, who watched the match at the General Sports Authority viewing tent, was happy that the game at least was close this time.
  • Saudi Arabia will face off against Egypt, who also lost their opening two group A games against Uruguay and Russia, on June 25.

JEDDAH: Saudi Arabia’s World Cup dreams were shattered after Uruguay beat the Green Falcons 1-0 in the second of the three group-stage matches. Most Saudi fans in Jeddah were much happier with the team’s performance in game two, following the resounding 5-0 defeat by host nation Russia in the opening match on June 14, but still bitterly disappointed by the loss, which means they cannot qualify for the knockout stages.

Yousif, who watched the match at the General Sports Authority viewing tent, was happy that the game at least was close this time. “Although we lost, the performance was much better than the first game with Russia. I hope we win our next match,” he said.

Nasrah, who watched the game with her two sons, said: “I was really disappointed because we played good today and nothing less than a win should have been acceptable. I am also disappointed to see the looks on my boys faces when the game ended as they were hoping for a win.”

Khalid Al-Raghbi said at least it had been a good match to watch. “We played a bit better today,” he added. “I wish we would have won but at least we performed better than our last match against Russia.”

Before the game, Ibrahim Al-Turki had been optimistic about Saudi Arabia’s chances. “We didn’t expect today’s result. I was thinking that Saudi would win by two goals, and Uruguay would score one,” he said.

The result was especially disappointing given the close result and the number of chances the Saudis had to score, said Badr, who added: “I don’t know what to tell you because we are deeply disappointed. At least if we lost with a big defeat I would say we deserved it. We had the potential but we could not score.”

Shadi Al-Ghamdi said he wished the national team’s much improved performance in their second game had been more evident in their first. “I am very proud of the players, I thought they played very well. I just wish they had played like this against Russia," he said.

Safah was less complimentary and said that the Saudi players had let their fans down, adding: “They seemed scared whenever they attempted to score any goals.”

Saudi Arabia will face off against Egypt, who also lost their opening two group A games against Uruguay and Russia, on June 25. It will be the final game in the competition for both sides, with only pride to play for, as they battle it out to see who will finish third in the group and who will be left in bottom spot.