Five Things to Look Forward to in the Dubai Shopping Festival 2021-2022


When you plan a holiday, one of the first things you do is shop for the destination. However, there is one destination that requires just the bare minimum and nearly empty bags. What else would you do if you are planning to head the largest shopping extravaganza in the world?

The Dubai Shopping Festival 2022 is happening until January 29, 2022. If you are a shopaholic at heart, DSF is the place to be for you. With stunning shopping experiences, art, cultural events, family activities, and live shows, DSF is as grand as it is beautiful.

Check out some of the most glorious things you can look forward to at the Dubai Shopping Festival.

1) Concerts galore

The Dubai Shopping Festival is so grand this year that the lineup of the events is as mesmerizing as the event itself. If you are spending your winter holidays in Dubai, you can sway to the soulful voices of Rahat Fateh Ali Khan and Arijit Singh, tap your feet away to the tunes of James Blunt, enjoy an immersive experience learning the history and trivia of the Barcelona and collecting merchandise, or catch a show of the critically-acclaimed and awarded musical Chicago live on stage at the Dubai Opera. 

2) The Devil can Wear Prada and more!

What is the point of going to a shopping festival if you do not go apparel shopping? Right from super-brands like Armani, Bebe, Burberry, Prada, Jack & Jones, and BOGGI to Christian Louboutin, Verri, Rodeo Drive, and Billionaire, you name it and they have more than it. From cool casuals and sexy party wear to conservative office wear and quirky Bohemian styles, there is one (or more!) for everyone. You cannot come to Dubai and not shop for gold. Art and creativity meet purity and affordability in the DSF as scores of gold brands put up their shops. With designs varying from modern to traditional, minimalistic to chunky, DSF is a treasure trove for gold jewellery lovers. 

3) The splendid night markets

The Etisalat Market OTB is at its 9th edition of the DSF and is one of the most charming alternative shopping destinations in Dubai. Set up in Burj Park, Downtown Dubai. This year, dancer-choreographer and actor Robert Hoffman is opening the event with a dance workshop to culminate in a Dance Battle Finale on December 30. This year’s Etisalat Market OTB has Asian pop culture as its theme, with events based on K-Pop dance and music and Squid Games series, along with the ultimate BTS day! This year’s Etisalat market OTB also has Korean and Japanese beauty products, vintage chunky shoes, street, and sportswear, etc., along with scrumptious food stops. Apparel brand SHEIN also sets up its SHEIN YOU-TOPIA pop-up that boasts of some chic global fashion trends at The Plaza, Bluewaters. With interactive photo-op backgrounds, booths that give information about a brand, and innumerable gifts, offers, and rewards, SHEIN also has an AR makeup trial experience. 

4) Fireworks and a playhouse

The act of ‘learning by doing is at the core of this year’s festivities and so DSF is setting up in the cosy Al Seef district with workshops, activities, live entertainment, and some brilliant fireworks. Transforming Al Seef into a walkable outdoor playhouse and museum, the event will have educational interactive art installations, that visitors of any and all ages can learn, engage and explore in. Themed around the elements – Air, Water, Earth, and Fire, the zones explain the rich history and culture of the emirates.

Apart from this, the event also features, Coffee Week at DSF Market and Date Week, featuring date-inspired food. By the night, the dark sky would light up with an electric show of fireworks that would go off at midnight.

The pyrotechnics would light up the Dubai sky from January 16- 30 while there would be similar stunners at select locations on New Year’s Eve.

5) Drones make a comeback

Last year, the DSF brought in a spectacular live show of bright colours set against the coastline. Returning on popular demand, DSF brings the Drone Light Show’s second edition to Bluewaters and The Beach opposite JBR. With 45 days of high-tech production, the show would be themed around the Dubai Shopping Festival and will also showcase the lovely ‘Ya Salam Ya Dubai’ song by Rashed Al Majed and RedOne representing a day in the life of the Emiratis from the past to the present.

The Dubai Shopping Festival has something for everyone. Head to DSF for some stunning shopping and family time. But be careful to take all precautions during these Covid times.