The March 26-31 event – which is drawing big designer names such as Jean Paul Gaultier and Roberto Cavalli – is supported by the General Entertainment Authority
“It is recognized as one of the world’s most important fashion weeks – “ Arab Fashion Council
RIYADH, March 23 (CIC) – Some of the world’s top fashion houses and designers will descend on the Saudi capital Riyadh next week for Arab Fashion Week Riyadh, the first official fashion week held in the Kingdom.
The Arab Fashion Council (AFC), the world’s largest non-profit fashion council representing all 22 Arab League member states, said in a statement that Arab Fashion Week Riyadh will take place from March 26 to 31 at the Ritz Carlton.
“A few days only separate us from the launch of the first official Arab Fashion Week in Riyadh, which will take place 26th-31st March 2018 at the Ritz-Carlton Riyadh,” AFC said.
The milestone event – which is drawing big designer names such as Jean Paul Gaultier and Roberto Cavalli – is supported by the Saudi General Entertainment Authority (GEA).
“The first Arab Fashion Week in Riyadh boasts an impressive lineup of international and regional designers, which includes legendary French designer Jean Paul Gaultier, Russian renowned designer Yulia Yanina, famous Lebanese fashion house, Bassil Soda,” AFC added.
The first official Saudi platform will also be showcasing the latest collections by Saudi designers: Reem Al Kanhal, Arwa Al Ammari, Mashael AlRajhi, Arwa Al Banawi, and Alya Al Sawwaf. Other highlights include: Maison Alexandrine (Brazil), Naja Saade (Lebanon), Aiisha Ramadan (UAE), Asory House (Egypt), Bibisara (Kazakhstan), an Mua Mua Dolls (Italy).
Commenting on this important event, Princess Noura bint Faisal Al Saud, Honorary President of AFC, said: “We are proud of the significant progress achieved by the Arab Fashion Council in Riyadh, as we announce today the first Fashion Week in the history of the Kingdom.
She added: “We are excited to see the fruits of the effort to launch this event in a relatively record period, and we thank the global support shown by the International fashion community, which strongly reflects the firm position of Saudi Arabia not only as an economic force, but also as a cultural and creative hub. This is a new era that we are witnessing, an era where ‘only dreamers are welcome to join’ to use the words of HRH Prince Mohammed bin Salman bin Abdulaziz, Crown Prince of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.”
Headlining this inaugural event is the Italian brand Roberto Cavalli. Gian Giacomo Ferraris, CEO of Roberto Cavalli Group commented: “Saudi Arabia and the Pan-Arabic world has always embraced the Roberto Cavalli style, at the same time its rich culture inspired the brand profoundly. We are honoured by the invitation of HH Princess Noura Bint Faisal Al Saud and the Arab Fashion Council to open the very first edition of Arab Fashion Week in Riyadh and to be part of this historic moment for the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia”.
This is latest move by the Kingdom to affirm its vision to transform the fashion Industry and retail sector in Saudi Arabia into both a regional and global destination by encouraging trade exchange and global business in line with the Vision 2030 and the “National Transformation Plan”, with the objective of reducing oil dependency and increasing revenues from other sources, AFC said in the statement.
“The nation offers significant investment opportunities and is uniquely placed connecting three continents, Asia, Europe and Africa, to act as a gateway to the world, for regional talent and for International designers wishing to enter the region. AFC (Arab Fashion Council) main pillars are: Education, Trade & Investment, Manufacturing, Talent Development, Art & Culture and Passion,” the statement added.
Last month, AFC announced the opening of its regional office in Riyadh and the appointment of Princess Noura Bint Faisal Al Saud as Honorary President.
Layla Issa Abuzaid, Vice Chairman and Executive Director for Saudi Arabia, the Arab Fashion Council, said: “The first Arab Fashion Week in Riyadh, will be more than a world-class event, it is a catalyst through which we believe the fashion sector will lead other economic sectors such as tourism, hospitality, retail, real estate, investment, M&A, travel, and trade.
“Our retail sector is among the fastest growing in the world. It’s not an easy challenge but we passionately believe in what we are doing. Through our commitment we hope that we will be able to drive significant growth on the encouraging figures Saudi Arabia has achieved so far in this context. And with the great vision and support of HRH Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman we woman, will have our place in our great community (Saudi Arabia) as men and woman are equal.”
The AFC is building a strong foundation to establish a sustainable fashion infrastructure that will serve not just the region, but creative economies the world over, it said.
Presenting the scope and calendar for the fashion week, Mr. Jacob Abrian, AFC Founder & Chief Executive, said: “The launch of the Arab Fashion Week in Riyadh is an unprecedented step for the Arab Fashion Council. This historic move will propel the fashion sector in the Arab world to new heights. Today, we are a step forward towards achieving our goals of establishing a solid infrastructure for our regional fashion industry and providing prosperous opportunities for future generation of Arab designers.”
Huawei was announced as title sponsor of the Arab Fashion Week in Riyadh.