In pictures: The top 10 to look forward to at Downtown Design

CID provides an insider’s preview to Dubai’s new trade fair Downtown Design

The organisers of Art Dubai and Design Days Dubai are set to launch Downtown Design, a new four-day design trade fair at the Venue in Downtown Dubai from October 29 to November 1.

For the first time in the Middle East, Downtown Design will gather a carefully selected range of international design brands known for their superior quality products and craftsmanship. Those who will gain most from the event are expected to be industry experts such as architects, real estate developers, interior designers and professional specifiers.

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Cristina Romelli Gervasoni, fair director, explains: “Held in a unique venue at the foot of the Burj Khalifa in Downtown Dubai, the fair will not only showcase design from some of the world’s top brands such as Vitra and Cassina, there will also be special installations such as Temporary Museum of Milano, one of the main highlights of the Milan Design Week that has never [previously] exhibited outside Milan.”

Other events set to span across the four days include: a live craftsmanship workshop where the Danish brands Fritz Hansen, Louis Poulsen and Carl Hansen will show the original manufacturing process and the practice of selecting materials; Nouvelle Vague, a design exhibition organised by the Institut Français in the UAE and curated by Cédric Morisset. Nouvelle Vague will be featuring French and Emirati designers such as Paulin Deltour, Guillaume Delvigne, François Dumas, Khalid Shafar, Victoria Wilmotte as well as Dan Yeffet.

Visitors will also be delighted to learn that the programme permits access to the world’s leading designers such as Ora Ito, Roberto Palomba and Giulio Cappellini, addressing the latest developments in the industry such as top property and distribution companies to the production of design from exhibiting brands.

“The fair is aimed at those with an interest in design. Primarily, it is focused on a business platform where trade visitors will see the latest design concepts and products from all around the world and interact with key figures connected to the industry in an environment never experienced before in the Middle East region,” describes Gervasoni.

The announcement of Downtown Design came weeks after His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, UAE Vice President and Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, announced the establishment of the Dubai Council for Design and Fashion, as part of a larger initiative toward supporting local design talent and promoting artistic creativity across the region. Dubai also aims to become home to a localised design and fashion hub, Dubai Design District to be located in Business Bay.

While Dubai is also home to other fairs including Art Dubai and Design Days Dubai, Gervasoni distinguishes Downtown Design as “a trade fair aimed at global design brands who want to connect with and sell products to design industry professionals across the region.”

The fair director concludes: “With the significant developments and initiatives being made to support Dubai’s burgeoning art and design scene together with the Emirate’s ever-growing real estate and construction industry, Downtown Design is set to become a leading platform for international brands to showcase their products in a rapidly growing market.”

He further added: “The industry professional event will also play a key role in establishing the Emirate’s reputation as a global destination for design; complimenting the international calendar of design events in other global cities including London, New York, Milan, Paris, Basel, Cologne as well as Miami.”

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