The Bride Show Abu Dhabi swept into the UAE capital in February amid a whirl of tulle, satin, lace topped off with millions of sparkling gems and jewels.
With visitor numbers up by 18 per cent compared with the 2009 exhibition, the wedding industry has proved to be one of the most resilient markets to not only survive, but thrive through the global economic crisis.
And in the Middle East region especially, weddings mean big business for fashion houses, hotels, florists, chocolatiers, jewellers, hair and make up salons and event planners, all of which were out in full force at the most prestigious bridal exhibition in Abu Dhabi. Brides to be, their friends and family, as well as dedicated followers of fashion flocked to the Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre during the four day event.
As a host of models stormed the catwalks during 14 fashion shows, the ladies of Abu Dhabi secured front row seats taking in each exquisite creation вЂ“ from elaborate bridal gowns by Arushi, Sposa by Shiva Taba and Ghawashi, to bright, eye-popping eveningwear by Old House Heritage, Mozghan and Manal & Aartivijay Gupta.
Stunningly embellished abayas by Smooth Lady, Beauty Queen and Princess were also well received, while Oshia Fashion Design provided one of the highlights of the event with two abayas adorned with diamonds, crystals and pearls, both worth a cool AED100,000, which received a lot of attention from Arab visitors.
вЂњIn 2009, we were heartened to see that the regionвЂ™s wedding industry was still buoyant despite the economic uncertainty around the world, but this year, that message has been reinforced with the strong support The Bride Show Abu Dhabi received from the local community,вЂќ said Lucy Clarke, Exhibition Director for The Bride Show.
вЂњWe ensured we worked with exhibitors to provide all the products and services you need to get married and feedback from them indicated that when it comes to a brideвЂ™s big day, no expense is spared.вЂќ
The Bride Show Abu Dhabi is followed by The Bride Show Dubai which takes place from 7 to 10 April 2010 at the Dubai International Exhibition Centre.
More than 300 exhibitors, representing the wide-ranging wedding business, will come together for the largest bridal event in the Middle East.
While The Bride Show Dubai will offer future brides the latest haute couture dresses and abayas designed by regional and international fashion designers, every kind of make-up product imaginable and enough diamonds to keep any Hollywood star happy. WomenвЂ™s World Live will have healthcare and wellbeing providers and fun fitness classes.
The Bride Show Dubai offers the emirateвЂ™s most fashion conscious women a front row seat at an abundance of runway shows with professional models showcasing fabulous wedding dresses, inspiring and creative abayas and exquisite evening wear. Popular favourites such as Julea Domani by Zeena Zaki, Scalini Haute Couture, Demetrios, Sposa by Shiva Taba and Meena Rose have already confirmed that their latest collections will be sent down the runway in spectacular style.
Visitors to the show will be eligible to enter prize draws to win a holiday to Seoul courtesy of Visit Korea, to include flights and five-star accommodation, and a bride-to-be package from Silkor Laser Center worth AED1,500.
The Bride Show Dubai runs from Wednesday 7 April to Saturday 10 April, open from 2:30pm until 10:30pm. Children under 12 are not permitted. Entry is 10dhs per person.