321 Festival
321 Festival in Dubai brought DSF to a finale Image Credit: Supplied

Dubai: Dubai Shopping Festival (DSF) celebrated 38 days of exceptional entertainment, promotions, and activations with an all-new star-studded event, the ‘321 Festival’.

The inaugural edition of the festival featured three A-list stars - Hussain Al Jassmi, Tamer Hosny and Balqees - performing live at Skydive Dubai on January 13.

321 Festival included immersive shows, air displays from Fursan Al Emarat, Aerosparks’ pyro aerial displays, plus hundreds of performers, drummers, and roaming entertainment for one day only. Culminating in a drone and fireworks display, 8,569 people attended the event, marking an end to the “world’s best retail festival”.

Grand finale

In the culmination of city-wide retail promotions and entertainment, the first-ever 321 Festival came to Skydive Dubai on January 13. Thousands of friends and families gathered to witness a showcase with celebrity performances, immersive shows, roaming acts, and an array of culinary experiences, right in the centre of Dubai’s premier waterfront destination.

321 Festival was eight months in the making with over 2,000 people from 75 nationalities contributing and 30 strategic partners supporting to the event, which featured over 350 entertainers and musicians including three A-list artists and 50 drummers, 1500 drones, aeralist teams, eight hours of exclusive first to the region shows and six hours of original and immersive content.

In addition, the 321 finale featured 22-metre-high screens, as high as eight stories, with the “largest-ever” outdoor immersive Dubai live content show as well as two pyro planes and the largest display of flames and sfx in the history of DSF.

Doors opened at 4pm with guests arriving to enjoy the last of the winter sunlight hours, and the first performances of a packed line-up of regional and local talent kicked off the show. Artists who were part of Tunes DXB, the incredible activation which brought free live music to crowds across 16 locations across the city Festival goers also enjoyed bites from over 20 local F&B pop-ups and vendors serving up foodie moments.

During DSF immersive shows, more than 100 dancers, acrobats and dummers wowed visitors of all ages. Pyro Planes from Aerosparks and Fursan Al Emarat (The Knights) took to the skies in air displays at 11:30pm as part of the DSF immersive DJ show, while laser lighting and special effects further lit the skies.

Youngsters discovered the “dinosaurs” at the exclusive Lost Valley stage show by IMG Worlds of Adventures, while the young and young-at-heart were mesmerised by giant bubble shows, stilt walkers, acrobats, and mascots. The roaming entertainers set a vibrant atmosphere as excitement grew ahead of three of the biggest A-list Arab stars taking to the stage.

As the crowds enjoyed the DSF immersive shows, and with the mood at an all-time high, all eyes looked up as the DSF Drones Show took to the skies above, with a dancing display telling an enchanting story plus breathtaking displays of aerial acrobatics from the Pyro Planes by Aerosparks.

The Egyptian singer, Tamer Hosny, took the stage, with his charismatic presence shining while he put on a spectacular performance. Emirati singer, Balqees, then delivered a stunning show, enchanting the crowd with her best-beloved songs Majnoon and Alf Rouh. ًWith the Emirati singer Hussain Al Jassmi giving an epic performance with his popular tracks Tabtaba and Al Shaky.

Ahmed Al Khaja, CEO of Dubai Festivals and Retail Establishment (DFRE), the government agency behind DSF and 321 Festival said: “Events and entertainment properties play a central role in the Dubai festival offering, and help cement the city’s status as the best place in the world to live, work and visit.

Commenting on Festival 321 and his involvement in the closing ceremony, Hussein Al Jasmi said: “I am always delighted to connect with the audience in Dubai and the Emirates, particularly during Dubai Shopping Festival. It has been a source of joy to celebrate the festival’s openings and closings over the years, marked by incredible interaction and love. And today, I anticipate a promising future for this event in Dubai and the Emirates.”

Tamer Hosney said: “I am delighted to have been able to take part in 321 Festival in Dubai and the warm reception from the audience with such wonderful vibes. The festival brought me immense happiness, witnessing the audience’s engagement with my new songs, especially ‘Mohashtakish.’ A heartfelt thank you to my dear and extensive audience in Dubai. I would like to express my gratitude to Dubai Shopping Festival for hosting me at this remarkable event.”

Balqees said: ““Being part of the inaugural of the 321 Festival was a joyful and unique experience. Participating in the closing celebrations of the Dubai Shopping Festival, a long-standing and well-loved event in the region, is truly a remarkable feeling. I cherished every moment of this unforgettable evening, especially as I introduced a distinct performance segment. Witnessing its success through the eyes of the large and enthusiastic audience present was incredibly rewarding.”