DUBAI: Lebanon’s designers were left reeling after the devastating explosion in Beirut on Aug. 4 that destroyed ateliers and ruined collections, however, they didn’t let that stop them from shining at the 2020 edition of the Venice International Film Festival, currently underway in Italy. As the first international festival since the coronavirus pandemic began in early spring, Venice is providing some much-needed red carpet fantasy, all with a little help from regional talents.
With new films from the likes of Pedro Almodóvar, Gia Coppola and Orson Welles, this year’s schedule is jam-packed, bringing in a slimmed-down list of stars from across the globe for photo ops and red carpet premieres during which their glamorous style is put on full display.
Italian actress Beatrice Valli stunned in not one but two couture creations from Lebanese designers. Earlier this week, the 25-year-old hit the red carpet for the premiere of “Padrenostro” arm-in-arm with her husband Marco Fantini wearing a red, strapless ball gown plucked from George Hobeika’s Spring 2019 couture collection – fashion lovers will recall when the actress wore a silver, gem-encrusted Georges Hobeika gown to last year’s event.
Valli then switched to an elegant white gown from Rami Kadi to attend the red carpet premiere of “Miss Marx” on Sept. 5. The floor-length creation from the designer’s Spring 2020 couture collection featured an intricately beaded, strapless bodice and a feather skirt.
Meanwhile, Georges Hobeika also found a fan in Lebanese television presenter Raya Abirached, who demanded a double take wearing a sheer black, embellished dress with short sleeves and a high slit. She highlighted the gown’s square neck with a dazzling diamond necklace from Yeprem.
Abirached’s outfit at the opening ceremony of the 77th edition of the festival was just as eye-catching. She wore a bright blue fringed dress from Lavish Alice, paired with hot pink Louboutin pumps and jewelry by Egyptian label Azza Fahmy.
The 77th annual Venice International Film Festival is running until Sept. 12 in a more restrained format as stars sail in on water taxis in face masks and stick to health guidelines such as social-distancing, which is mandatory for all attendees. But, clearly, that hasn’t dimmed any of the glamour.