By Shaneer N Siddiqui
Dubai, Oct 19 (IANS): Diwali in Dubai is the perfect occasion for the residents and visitors to take a short break, enjoy the Festival of Lights, spend memorable time with the family, eat delicious food, and explore the city's stores for new fun, clothes, gifts, gold and more. This year, the Diwali in Dubai calendar is packed with an array of spectacular live entertainment, fantastic offers, thrilling raffles, incredible fireworks and captivating events taking place throughout the Emirate until October 28.
In UAE, it is going to a musical Diwali for all, where world-renowned music icon A.R. Rahman is set to lighten up fans with a special live concert on October 29.
Commenting on the occasion Rahman says, "I'm thrilled and honoured to be performing live for the first time at Yas Island, Abu Dhabi this October. I always endeavour to celebrate music globally and connect with my fans and music enthusiasts worldwide, and I am looking forward to being a part of their Diwali celebrations this year!" A.R. Rahman is performing along with his band and other renowned Bollywood singers and musicians.
Another star attraction of Diwali is Zakir Khan, India's best stand-up comedian, and storyteller, will be on October 28. Speaking about his upcoming tour in Dubai, he says "Dubai has always been so warm and welcoming, there was an instant need to come back and perform my latest show Tathastu for the loving audience here. With this show, I am excited to show my fans a more honest, vulnerable and unedited version of myself."
Another musical blockbuster to Dubai during Diwali is Bollywood singer, Javed Ali, in the concert, to be staged on October 22. Bollywood singer Akasa Singh is performing live at the Big Diwali Mela. Also in the same line, the first ever performance of Coke Studio was seen in Dubai last week.
This Diwali iconic Global Village has a variety of Bollywood shows, shopping and cultural performances at the India Pavilion as well as delicious Indian dining options including authentic street food at the Chaat Bazaar with musical fireworks.
In terms of Diwali gastronomy, ever year Dubai market has lots of surprises. This year Kesar chocolates and Pista chocolates are in trends replacing the traditional Indian sweets. Shef Ayesha from Golden ribbon chocolates said "As we are specializing in the handmade chocolates, this year is noting an amazing spike in orders of chocolate with Indian flavors and colours. This is a new trend for this year."
Visyam Anand, an Indian living in Dubai says, "I was born here and almost every year I have celebrated Diwali in Dubai itself. Dubai's Diwali is in no way different from India's Diwali. But this year it is. It is special because this is first Diwali after mask removal, and we will go to the newly opened Hindu temple with the family for worship and darshan."
Manager of newly opened Hindu temple, Mohan said, "We have special preparations for the day of Diwali. As we are receiving 10,000 visitors on weekends, we are excepting around 20,000 visitors on the day of Diwali."
This year, Dubai Festivals and Retail Establishment launched the colourful Diwali Calendar of Events in collaboration with the Consulate General of India. All the malls and shopping centres are lit up with great prizes, incredible offers and amazing entertainment. Diwali shoppers will win gold bars, luxury cars, chance to participate in KBC during this season.
Visitors can also enjoy the Instagrammable offerings including a variety of tantalising street food trucks, diverse new marketplaces and a must-see aquatic experience performed by the Fontana Circus. The first travelling water circus in the Middle East offers breathtaking artistic performances, special effects and much more. Once shopping is out of the way, people can see the record-breaking water and lights show IMAGINE that has been specially choreographed for this Diwali and the fireworks spectacle at Dubai Festival City Mall.
Hypermarkets are hosting lots of activities and offers to celebrate the Festival of Lights. Kamal Vachani from Al Maya group said "We are running special Diwali offers and lucky draws. This year organic fruits and newly launched Kashmiri apples are high in demand. We are expecting a vibrant Diwali after the end of pandemic, and we can see the enthusiasm of shoppers in market for festival."
Aman Puri, Consul General of India to Dubai, said "Diwali in Dubai is a special celebration with the large Indian diaspora joining in revelry with their friends and families from several nationalities in Dubai. Over the years, Diwali in Dubai has gained wide popularity with tourists and residents enjoying the exciting line up of a display of fireworks and shopping experiences."