Looking good has become big business in the Gulf. According to fashion designers, the biggest buyers of haute couture today hail not only from China, but also the GCC.
Nationals from Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Qatar and the UAE, where, for many women, the social calendar revolves around weddings and private parties, “do not hesitate to spend 50,000 euros on a low-cleavage lame for an event where no men will be present,” Reuters reports.
Qatar, the world’s richest country, has become a particularly favorite hotspot:
Qatar is organising its first fashion week with a target date of March 2012…Sheikha Mozah bint Nasser al-Missned, the glamorous wife of the emir of Qatar who regularly features in Gulf tabloids along with Queen Rania of Jordan… (and) regarded as one of the world’s biggest buyers of couture, according to fashion experts – is also behind the creation of the Qatar Luxury Group in 2008.
Based in Doha, it hired designer Stephane Rolland to create a fashion brand from scratch that it is aiming to unveil next spring.
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*Correction: The first version of this post cited a Reuters report that inaccurately categorized Sheikha Mozah as “one of the biggest supporters of the fashion event.” This has been removed.