UAE bridal show draws in lovebirds, wedding planners

The opening show on Wednesday featured Lebanese fashion designer Rani Zakhem at the Expo Centre Sharjah

Shounaz Meky - Al Arabiya News
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The number of people choosing to travel to the UAE to get married continues to rise. According to the country’s National Bureau of Statistics there was nearly a 10 percent increase in weddings registered there in 2013 compared to the previous year.

Wedding service providers and industry experts say the business is expected to grow in the next few years as the wedding industry could benefit from regional economies getting ready to host mega events like the World Expo 2020 in Dubai and the FIFA World Cup 2022 in Qatar.

So it probably makes sense to hold an annual bridal show in the Gulf nation.

Sharjah’s annual bridal show has made a comeback this year with even more opportunities to meet the industry’s top vendors from across the region.

And to add to the excitement - one lucky bride will walk away with a $16,000 wedding dress designed by Emirati fashion designer Aisha al-Muhairi.

Celebrating its tenth year, the “Perfect Wedding Show” held at the Expo Center Sharjah started on Wednesday and runs until March 7.

The fair brings together all the essentials needed for the perfect wedding ceremony including a host of celebrity designers, couturiers, decor specialists, caterers and experts from pampering and retail therapy sectors.

The opening show on Wednesday featured Lebanese fashion designer Rani Zakhem.

Models walked the runway wearing evening gowns and a selection of four wedding dresses designed by Zakhem, whose designs were previously seen on Hilary Duff at the 2015 Instyle Awards and Allison Janney at the People’s Choice Awards 2015.

A display of Zakhem’s bridal gowns at the Perfect Wedding Show. (Shounaz Meky/Al Arabiya News)

Displays of flower arrangements and wedding table decorations fill the fair. And there is a wide range of abayas, jalabiyas, perfumes, cosmetics and jewelry also on display.

The fair showcases a Cinderella Carriage, which offers brides-to-be a fairytale-like ride for their big day.

bridal show
bridal show

An exhibitor told Al Arabiya News that the show provides a platform for couples to explore the latest trends in wedding planning.

“Visitors like the fact that the exhibition brings the newest options for what a bride and groom need for organizing a wedding all in one place,” said Diyaa, who works for a wedding decoration firm.

bridal show
bridal show

Bridal show businesses have been on the surge in the UAE, which according to industry experts is one of the top destinations couples travel to, to wed.

“The fairy-tale wedding settings that the UAE can offer are hard to match elsewhere. No wonder the country has consistently found its place among the top 10 destinations to get married abroad,” said Saif al-Midfa, CEO of Expo Centre Sharjah.

bridal show
bridal show

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