For the first time in its history, Saudi Arabia will be hosting Arab fashion week next month. Arab Fashion Council announced recently, overturning decades of draconian policies on arts and entertainment.
Speaking to a small group of industry insiders and journalists in London, Bint Faisal, reading from a letter from the General Entertainment Authority in Saudi Arabia, said: “Saudi Arabia’s artistic community has been growing in size and in confidence for a number of years and the General Entertainment Authority believes that such an event will allow a proper platform to showcase their fashion and arts talents as the vehicle for a comprehensive range of entertainment options in Saudi Arabia.”
Arab Fashion Week will take place at Riyadh’s eco-friendly Apex Center, a white honeycomb-like venue designed by the late celebrated Iraqi-British architect Zaha Hadid.
In the past, Arab Fashion Week have been hosted so far exclusively by Gulf fashion capital Dubai and have included runway darlings Marchesa and Tony Ward.
The Gulf kingdom, which has some of the world’s tightest restrictions on women, earlier allowed women for the first time ever to enter a football stadium to watch a game and the kingdom and also announced an end to a longstanding ban on women driving, which is to take effect in June.