Saudi events agency Basamat has launched a unique and exciting Ramadan Bazaar in the historical area of Al Balad in Jeddah. From April 20-23, the event will spotlight 20 Saudi Arabian brands as well as international labels through activations and an exclusive runway show. Guests will have the opportunity to interact with designers in a showroom and purchase products as well as receive immersive experiences such as styling, hair and makeup masterclasses, exclusive shopping opportunities, and private suhoor events. Among the professional creatives who are a part of the Bazaar include celebrity hairstylist Nabil Harlow, stylist Lejenke, who has worked with Naomi Campbell, Beyoncé, and Kim Kardashian.
A few of the bespoke luxury events and activations allow guests to have their purchases customized to their liking, including makeup and nail stations. The event also features an installation pertaining to Saudi culture and destinations, wherein guests can learn about the Holy Month of Ramadan and the heritage of the Kingdom. Brands included within the Bazaar are Honayda, Nasiba Hafiz, Otkutyr fashion house, Galag, Kim’s Caffee, The Parlor Salon, and 28.g.
Below, find out more about the Bazaar from Aisha Almamy, founder of Basamat.
What made you want to launch the Bazaar during Ramadan?
I wanted to launch the Bazaar in Ramadan as it is the month when everyone in Saudi, Jeddah, and Mecca, gather and families meet each other. It’s the month of giving back, it’s the month where everyone is spiritual and is trying to be the best version of themselves.
Why did you pick Al Balad as the location?
The location of the Bazaar is in the heart of Jeddah, it’s a Unesco site, and nobody has ever done an event there and I was the first to have this opportunity. The location is in between historical houses where our roots come from, where our grandfathers and grandmothers used to live.
Tell us more about the unique concept of the Bazaar.
We have around 20 brands from all the departments from high fashion, couture, streetwear, art, beauty, perfume, nail salon, styling, and accessories. We also have a beautiful runway for the fashion show. Every day is the participants’ day; they get a chance to show their clothes on the runway in the middle of these authentic houses. I picked and approached the brands I wanted to work with me. My event is a very niche and very high-end event, and my idea is to bring high fashion into the original Jeddah. They called Jeddah the Bride of the Red Sea and my idea was to have the shining ring as my Bazaar for that bride. The shape of the runway is in bright white that looks like a diamond surrounded by colorful lighting so with the drone you see it as a diamond surrounded by colorful gems.
We have booths for the designers to present their goods and collections, and we have the help center which is a non-profitable organization for special needs children and part of the income of this event is charity to help the kids. We also have Dar Al-Hikmah college, one of the few fashion and art universities, so we wanted to bring the girls there who study fashion and art to join our masterclasses for free. We have three masterclasses—three major experts we flew here, so we have one day for makeup, one day for styling, and one day for hair.
What kind of an experience do you aim to offer the visitors of Bazaar?
It’s about quality and creating community and experience, as well as luxury. We have valet parking for all of our guests, we have a PA to welcome the guests at the entrance and guide them through the event and introduce the story behind each brand, as well as a bell boy to carry their purchases. We have a Basamat lounge for our VIP platinum guests and the celebrities that we invite.
The event was also made possible with the help of our sponsors, Porsche and Aston Martin. We have a green recycled Saudi water brand and we have Arbab Al Haraf, an art community as a sponsor. We also have Liquid, a Saudi production company, and the most amazing lighting guy, Hussein Gazaz, who is called the King of Lights in Jeddah, Half of the magic in this event was created by his lighting.
I studied fashion and film production and lived in Paris for nine years. I double-majored in film production and entrepreneurship at the American University of Paris and I lived in London. Now, I’m back in Saudi and I couldn’t be happier to feel that I am bringing all the knowledge and everything that I’ve learned to the heart of my city and country where my family used to live.