’Tis the season! With the 2018 edition of the Dubai Shopping Festival (DSF) kicking off at the end of December, expect plenty of festive events, New Year’s Eve shows and a jam-packed January.
“Dubai Shopping Festival has always been the jewel in the retail calendar crown and this year is set to be even bigger and better than ever,” said Ahmed Al Khaja, CEO, Dubai Festivals and Retail Establishment (DFRE), an agency of Dubai Tourism. “Together with our strategic partners, we will be bringing people truly memorable shopping experiences featuring celebrities, world-class experts and interactive masterclasses, making Dubai the ultimate must-visit shopping destination this New Year.”
In fact, dare we say it? There might be way too many events to choose from! Thankfully, fret not, as help is at hand with our handy guide to the best shows and concerts you need to know about. But get booking quickly, especially those NYE ones, as tickets will no doubt sell fast.
Live at Atlantis presents Hardwell
December 28 | Nasimi Beach at Atlantis The Palm
Remember when Nasimi used to host NYE concerts, and then people would get stuck in traffic for hours? Well, it seems organisers have learned their lesson and are hosting one big bash right before the busiest night of the year.
Here, superstar Dutch DJ and producer Hardwell will get people warmed up for NYE with an end-of-December appearance at Atlantis The Palm Jumeirah.
Tickets start from Dh200.
Amr Diab Live in Dubai
December 29 & 31 | Dubai Media City Amphitheatre & Conrad Dubai
When you’re this famous why not host two gigs in the space of a few days. While one is set to offer a concert atmosphere with the other more intimate, there’s something here for every Amr Diab fan. The Egyptian superstar performs first in Dubai Media City where tickets start from Dh295. His NYE show, meanwhile, starts from Dh1,495 per person.
Emaar's 'Light up 2018' spectacle
December 31 | Downtown Dubai
It wouldn’t be NYE without a Downtown Dubai show of course, and this year’s will include a Guinness world record attempt, no less.
‘Light Up 2018’ will celebrate the UAE’s achievements as well as pay tribute to the founding father of the nation, the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, to mark the ‘Year of Zayed’ in 2018.
Starting from 5 pm, special viewing decks will be available in Burj Park, so plan ahead and get there early. Entry is free.
New Year's at La Perle
December 31 | Al Habtoor City
Following sold-out performances during the National Day Weekend, La Perle by Dragone is back with brand new offers for the festive season, including a spectacular NYE package that includes a three-course dinner, unlimited beverages and the show for Dh1,250 per person.
Elissa, Sherine & Majid Almuhandis live in concert
December 31 | Grand Hyatt Dubai
One night; three superstar singers. She may have suffered a recent singing ban in her home country, but that’s not going to phase Egyptian songstress Sherine who will take to the stage in Dubai this NYE.
She’ll be joined by renowned Lebanese singer Elissa and Saudi legend Majid AlMuhandis. Bronze and silver packages have already sold out, so the next available tickets are for Dh2,000.
Sonu Nigam live in concert - Shukran Dubai 2018
January 12 | Dubai Tennis Stadium
The ‘Badshah of Bollywood Music’ returns to the emirate for a one-off show this January. The four-hour non-stop musical will feature 50 co-singers and musicians, and Nigam is definitely excited.
“I love coming back to Dubai,” said the singer, “because the audience is so attentive and appreciative of even the most delicate of musical nuances. This is what fuels a singer to perform at his best, when he has a brilliant audience that simply gets it.”
Tickets start from Dh125.
Majida El Roumi live in Dubai
26 January | Dubai Media City Amphitheatre
The legendary Lebanese soprano returns to the emirate for a one-off show that’s no doubt going to sell like hot cakes.
This marks El Roumi’s first visit to Dubai in four years. Expect hits like Kalimat, Saqat Al Qina and Tawq Al Yasmeen.
The songstress recently turned 61, with a number of singers taking to Twitter to wish her a happy birthday, including Elissa, Najwa Karam and Ahlam.
Tickets start from Dh395.
The Journey - Celebrating music, A R Rahman live in concert
January 26 | Bollywood Parks Dubai
Judging by the hype online, this is going to be huge!
Oscar and Grammy-winning artist AR Rahman will host a special stage production, especially created for Dubai, featuring 20 vocalists and musicians, primarily from India, accompanied by a spectacular visual show. Lasting over two hours, the concert is in celebration of Rahman completing 25 years working in the global music scene, according to the organiser.
Early bird tickets are available for Dh150 each.
January 22 - February 3 | Dubai Opera
Closing out the DSF is the West End production of Andrew Lloyd Weber’s famous musical Evita. While the final cast has yet to be announced, the show comes straight from a smash hit run at London’s Dominion Theatre — excitingly, 16 children from the UAE are part of the production.
The rock opera retells how Eva Peron, First Lady to Argentine president Juan Peron shot to fame, superstardom, and an eternal position in people’s hearts everywhere. The epic show has more than 20 major awards to its credit, and is a great way to entertain visiting family. As Jasper Hope, Chief Executive of Dubai Opera, says: “Love her or hate her, there’s no doubting the impact of this incredible woman’s story on Argentina and the world.”
Tickets are available from Dh250 each.
Tickets: Available for most shows at Platinumlist.net and Virginmegastore.ae