dubai-shopping-fest13The 18th edition of its iconic world famous event, the Dubai Shopping Festival by offering visitors a fantastic mix of events, activities and shopping-linked promotions during 32 days of non-stop celebrations showcasing ‘Dubai at its Best’ started January 3 and will continue until February 3.

The DSF 2013 events calendar has been thoughtfully planned to engage and satisfy visitors and residents of all cultural backgrounds and persuasions and from all quarters of the globe, with the ultimate goal of giving them  the best memories of Dubai.

While numerous lives have been changed down the years with the famous DSF mega raffle, this year the winnings will be even bigger. With mind-boggling prizes to be won, more visitors are set to return from DSF 2013 with transformational life experiences. When the array of concerts of renowned artists, theatrical performances, exhibitions, fashion extravaganzas, folklore and heritage shows, fun fairs, children’s and family activities, sporting meets and a myriad other events and happenings are taken into account – not to forget the cuisine and hospitality – everyone will emerge a winner, if only for the valuable everlasting memories they take back home with them.

With more events giving visitors a broad spectrum of choices, DSF 2013 will transform the city into a place abuzz with excitement and adventure, making DSF the best time to shop and enjoy the best of everything in Dubai.

Infiniti Mega Raffle – January 3 – February 3

Since its inception in 1996, the DSF has created unforgettable memories and life-changing opportunities for tens of thousands of visitors. 2013 will be no different,  as the Dubai Shopping Festival Mega Raffles are back in a bigger, mind-boggling prize format. Everyday, the Infiniti Mega Raffle gives DSF shoppers the chance to drive away with a fresh start to your future. Every day, one lucky winner will drive away with a luxurious Infiniti JX 35 and a luxurious Infiniti G25 plus AED 100,000 in cash! To be eligible for the daily draws, one has to purchase a raffle ticket for just AED 200 at selected EPPCO and ENOC petrol stations, kiosks at main streets, shopping malls and the Global Village. The more tickets you purchase, the more chances you have of winning. That’s winning at its best.

Nissan Grand Raffle 

The Nissan Grand Raffle is giving away shoppers this DSF the chance to drive home one of 12 different Nissan models daily, starting from January 4. Up for grabs are Micra Hatchback, Sunny Sedan, Maxima, Qashqai, Murano, Patrol, Juke, Altima, 370Z, Xterra, Pathfinder, and Armada. Customers are entitled to a raffle coupon for every AED 20 spent on non-fuel purchases at ENOC and EPPCO petrol stations or for every AED 200 spent at participating retail outlets.

Gold Mega Raffle

The Dubai Gold and Jewellery Group is back this DSF with a gold promotion that is offering prizes worth millions across the 32 days of the festival. Shoppers will receive coupons to enter the raffle draw on spending AED 1,500 or more on gold purchases at any of the participating outlets across the city.  Every day, a quarter kilo of gold is being given away to one winner, while a kilo of gold awaits one shopper every week. Further, customers who are entitled to a raffle coupon can also participate in a unique SMS promotion to win specially minted “EXPO 2020 Dubai Candidate City” gold coins every hour between 10am – 11pm every day, totaling 2kg of gold during DSF 2013. Alongside the gold promotion, a scratch-and-win campaign is being launched offering shoppers purchasing AED 1,000 worth of diamond jewellery the chance to win fabulous prizes worth up to AED 2 million.

Al Riqqa Street

January 3 to February 3, 5pm –  10pm

Al Riqqa Street has always been prominent among the DSF’s destinations. It has consistently reflected the full measure of the mood of festivity and celebrations that Dubai goes into every year during the time when it stages the DSF. This year the street will be decorated with lights and packed with entertainment including roaming performers that will keep visitors of all age groups enthralled in the evening on every day of DSF 2013. Some of the highlights in the area are a Sport Zone and a Skill Games area for the sporty types, a concentration of fancy lighting fixtures and other kinds of decorations, as well as kiosks offering a variety of merchandise and a broad choice of food and beverages to appeal to every palate.

Tea Oasis 

January 3 – February 3, Al Seef Street

Aficionados of the brew that refreshes will get a chance to tickle their taste buds with the best teas from the world over and enrich their knowledge about their favorite beverage at the Tea Oasis on Al Seef Road all through DSF 2013. The event will feature a tea market where visitors can buy the best from an eclectic collection of teas from all the major tea growing and consuming countries of the world – Morocco, Egypt, United Kingdom, Japan, India and Sri Lanka. Expert tea tasters will be on hand to show people how to brew the best tea and educate them about its varieties and finer points, as well as its history.

World of Souvenirs:

January 3 – February 3, Al Seef Street

In order for visitors to take back a little something to commemorate their visit to the cultural potpourri that is Dubai, a corner of Al Seef Road will host the World of Souvenirs with several stalls and kiosks, each representing a particular country. There will be kiosks dedicated to the USA, the UK, Brazil, France, China, India, Turkey and Africa in general, apart of course from the host country, the UAE. Each kiosk will have products related to the particular country that the kiosk represents.They will offer a range of  knick knacks that best represents each country, providing the best possible way to buy something to remember the trip to DSF and to take back a surprise gift for their near and dear ones.

DSF Carnival

January 3– February 3, Al Seef Street  

As the vibrant and colourful face of the festival, DSF Carnivals at Al Seef Street is a fascinating display by hundreds of performers including jugglers, stilt walkers, unicyclists, and musicians that will showcase the festive feeling of DSF and reflect the DSF theme of ‘ONE WORLD – ONE FAMILY – ONE FESTIVAL’. The DSF Carnivals will transform the entire Al Seef Street into a place of fun and great merry-making generated by performers from different nationalities during the weekends.


January 3 – February 3,

Colour and light is what festivals are all about and DSF 2013 will have plenty of both, as the Dubai night sky comes alive with some of the best pyrotechnics from world-renowned experts. The city’s unparalleled skyline will be lit up by sparks and showers from fireworks shows every evening during the festival at the Al Seef Street area and also at the Festival Promenade during the weekends, celebrating Dubai’s vibrancy and spirit with a rain of multi-coloured sparkles.

DSF Fun Fair:

January 3- February 3, Festival Promenade  – 10am – 10pm

Taking place on all 32 days of DSF 2013 at Festival Promenade, the DSF Fun Fair will lend the ultimate carnival atmosphere to the celebration of ‘Dubai at Its Best’.  With merry-go-rounds, bucking horses, Ferris wheels, Dodgem cars and other such rides and activities, accompanied by kiosks of mouthwatering snacks and enticing souvenirs, the Festival Promenade, will come alive every evening with the laughter of thrilled visitors. Also enlivening proceedings will be roaming street performers and games and contest with prizes.

Carpet and Art Oasis 

December 27,2012 – January 14,2013, Dubai World Trade Centre, Zabeel Hall  No. 3

An exhibition and sale of some of the rarest, largest, and most unique carpets and rugs from around the world, Carpet and Art Oasis is an attraction for those who have a penchant for not only carpets but the arts, culture and history. Spread across thousands of square metres, the exhibition features products from areas renowned for carpet-making such as Iran, Turkey, India, Pakistan, and Afghanistan with new additions being Kazakhastan and Azerbaijan.  Apart from carpets and rugs, works of art and handicrafts are also on display. With an emphasis on artistic carpet creation, the exhibition will showcase the history of carpet making, the use of both Arabic and English in the weaving patterns, as well as new elements such as paintings rendered through the carpets’ fine threads. The Carpet and Art  Oasis will promote the Arabic tome Naseej Al Wala’s on the art of the carpet, and will also showcase Emirati talent and local works of arts alongside the works of artists from around the world.

A Ard El Ghajar” (On the Land of the Gypsies)

January 10-12, Burj Park, Downtown Dubai – 8:30pm 

The doyens of Arabic musical theatre, the Rahbani family of Lebanon, presents “A Ard El Ghajar” (On the Land of the Gypsies), a musical play starring such luminaries of the Arabic stage as Ghassan Saliba, Pierre Chamoun, Aline Lahoud and Paul Sleiman. Written, composed and produced by Ghadi Rahbani and directed by Marwan Rahbani, the play deals with themes of homecoming, land, identity, corruption  and human dignity depicted through the life of an Arab emigrant to Brazil who returns to claim his ancestral property.

Bedouin Lifestyle Camp

January 3 – February 3, Festival Promenade, Dubai Festival City

A part of the Festival Promenade at Dubai Festival City will be transformed into a colourful Bedouin encampment for a month starting January 3rd, as the Dubai Shopping Festival 2013 brings the traditional life of the desert nomadic groups alive for city folks with the Bedouin Lifestyle Camp. To be held until February 3rd as part of the cultural events lined up for DSF 2013, the Bedouin Lifestyle Camp seeks to bring to modern Dubai a bit of the hoary past of the region’s hardy and ingenious desert dwellers through their food, costumes, music, dances, handicrafts, folklore and heritage. The countries of the Arab world that have a shared desert nomadic heritage will be represented at this event with their respective sections. There will be a section each for Yemen, Jordan, Mauritania, Egypt and Morocco, as well as the hosts UAE. Also represented will be Kenya and India – countries surrounding the Arab region that also have desert nomadic groups. The Camp will be open from 4pm-10pm on week days and from 4pm till midnight on weekends.

Biggest Breakfast

February 2 , Creek Park – 8am to 1pm

The event is designed to raise awareness among UAE residents about incorporating healthy eating into their lifestyles to boost health, longevity and productivity. The Biggest Breakfast, to be held at the Creek Park on February 2, will serve nutritional breakfast to more than 5,000 people. There will also be edutainment, fun, games, competitions and group fitness sessions – enough to involve entire families in a morning packed with the message of healthy eating and fitness. The event will feature cookery sessions in English and Arabic conducted by the best chefs in Dubai.

Black Light Show

January 3-6, Centrepoint Theatre, DUCTAC, Mall of the Emirates – 6:30 and 8:30

Billed as a magical and thrilling theatrical performance, where the rules of gravity and physics as we know them do not apply, the hour-long Black Light Show, which will take place at the Centrepoint Theatre, DUCTAC, Mall of the Emirates, is expected to wow its audience with its mix of choreography, motion, dance, music, light and shadow, apart from its sincere and thought provoking themes. There will be two performances daily from January 3 to January 6, which will bring in the best of experimental theatre under the slogan ‘See the music… listen to the light’. Dubai International Comedy Carnival January 22-26 – Dubai Festival City
Laughter is the spice of life and the spirit of every festival, and at DSF 2013, the best comedy talents from the UAE, the region and beyond will congregate at Dubai Festival City to present stand-up shows and even workshops, along with dancing and singing competitions at the first ever Dubai International Comedy Carnival.  With two types of shows, one ticketed from Dh175 to Dh250 and the other for free, and a star cast of comedians that will include Maz Jobrani, Badr Saleh, Michael Winslow (from the famous show, Police Academy), Amr Katamish (from Arabs Got Talet Show), Lebanese comedian, Omid Djalili and many more, the English and Arabic sessions are sure to enliven DSF and put a lingering smile on the faces of the audience.

Biggest Makeover 

January 11, The Dubai Mall

Biggest Makeover is a fashion spectacle of DSF 2013 that challenges stylists and make-up artists to do a make-over for the largest number of women in the shortest possible time. Featuring make-up and all major cosmetics brands, the event at the Dubai Mall will continue its tradition of delighting fashionistas, style divas and connoisseurs of style and beauty at DSF 2013.

Street Fashion Show 

January 26 – The Dubai Mall Promenade

The Promenade at The Dubai Mall will come alive with sartorial elegance this DSF as more than 100 models strut down its sidewalks in the beautiful and exciting creations of local and international designers at the Street Fashion event. Billed as the pinnacle of interactive fashion events, Street Fashion is the podium for fresh and aspiring models, many of whom will be drawn from among Dubai’s residents and visitors from a multitude of nationalities.

Midnight Fashion Show

February 1, The Dubai Mall

As the name suggest, the Midnight Fashion show at The Dubai Mall will take place when the clock strikes the bewitching hour on February 1. And to bewitch DSF visitors, who assemble at the mall to view this fashion spectacle, the Midnight Fashion Show will present some of the ultimate designer collections. Aiming to highlight the extended trading hours of the malls, the show will provide the incentive to keep shoppers in the mall for longer as the activities associated with it will carry on until the wee hours.

Global Village

October 21,2012 – March 30,2013 

There can be no better setting to experience the world’s premier shopping festival than at the Global Village, where the world comes together in Dubai. This unique venue is a melting pot of cultures from across the world, and has been delighting visitors at every DSF. With handicrafts, artifacts and curios from every continent, as well as food  that reflect the amazing diversity of our planet, Global Village will live up to its name of building bridges between nations and cultures, proving that all the world is truly one family and one big village. DSF information kiosks will be set up at Global Village along with a stage to hold the daily DSF Mega Raffle draws.

Heritage and Diving Village

January 3 – February 3

The Heritage and Diving Village is a little piece of Dubai frozen in time that depicts the way life functioned in the emirate in the hoary past. During DSF this living museum of traditional life will be a beehive of activity with stalls of Emirati food and artifacts, as well as presentations and exhibits about the pearling and seafaring traditions of the UAE’s forefathers.

Big Boys Toys

January 31 – February 2 – Atlantis The Palm

The Big Boys Toys show delivers what its name promises. The Middle East’s most anticipated premier luxury lifestyle show has been wowing gadget-mad Dubai and its visitors for a few years now. To be held at Atlantis the Palm, the DSF 2013 Big Boys Toys show is a perennial favourite that is returning to Dubai during DSF 2013. Big Boys Toys will provide visitors with the best of products from a wide spectrum of adventure, aviation, digital, drive, fashion, lifestyle, marine, Off Road, sports cars, bikes and wellness sectors .

Shakespeare’s Richard II in Arabic

January 17-18, Madinat Theatre, Souk Madinat Jumeirah – 8pm

The Bard of Avon’s epic tale of the lionhearted king of England will be staged in Arabic by Ramallah, Palestine-based theatre group “Ashtar” at the Madinat Theatre in Souk Madinat Jumeirah on Thursday, January 17 and Friday, January 18 starting at 8pm. Ashtar’s Arabic production of the play was part of the Globe to Globe festival at The Shakespeare Globe, which brought together many of the world’s great theatre companies to present all of Shakespeare’s plays in 37 different languages. Ashtar bring their direct storytelling style to Shakespeare’s classic play of politics, dislocation and insurrection. Performed in Arabic and infused with the tumultuous energy of the Arab Spring, Ashtar’s production of this powerful history play is a re-telling and re-contextualizing for today’s global audience.

UAE International Fire Fighter Championships 

January 15-17- Dubai International Convention and Exhibition Centre 

The Dubai International Convention and Exhibition Centre will host the UAE International Fire Fighter Championships from January 15 to 17 where professional firefighters will display their skills in sessions that seek to develop the motivation and stimulate team spirit in this most vital of civic functions which involves the saving of lives and property. The show aims to achieve the UAE’s vision of developing its infrastructure and human resources dedicated to fire safety, highlight fire hazards and safety procedures for members of the public and also enable viewers to enjoy the display of skills by trained professionals from all over the world.

Omar Khairat Concert

January 4, Dubai World Trade Centre – 9pm

The Sheikh Rashid Hall at Dubai World Trade Centre will play host on Friday, January 4, to one of the well known musicians in the Arab World. Omar Khairat’s concert is expected to be among the most touching and elegant concerts of the season as he performs classics from his fascinating repertoire and presents a special surprise to his Dubai audience. Khairat is one of the most applauded and influential composers and pianists in the Middle East, and his music bridges eastern and western approaches to music, bringing a western harmonic flair to classical Arabic music.

Slash in Concert

January 31, Dubai Tennis Stadium – 10pm

The legendary lead guitarist of former rock heavyweights Guns N’ Roses, will perform on Thursday, January 31,2013, with lead singer Myles Kennedy and the Conspirators at the Dubai Tennis Stadium as part of the closing weekend of Dubai Shopping Festival 2013. Since coming into prominence as the lead guitarist of Guns N’ Roses, Slash has also become inseparable from his iconic top hat and as the character of the Guitar Hero music video game. London-born and American-educated, Slash has delighted old and new fans alike the world over. Since making history and amassing sales in excess of 100 million units with Guns N’ Roses, he continued with Slash’s Snakepit and Velvet revolver with whom he won a Grammy for the Best Hard Rock performance. Named as Time Magazine’s runner-up on their list of “The 10 Best Electric Guitar Players” and placed at No.1 by Total Guitar for his riff in “Sweet Child o’ Mine”, Slash will be out to give all rock fans a memorable and mesmerising performance in Dubai.