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Breaking Stereotypes


Classical Design

CUISINE Estero Cocktail

Conceptual Design

Flavors of Dubai

Modern Design Reflections in Design

BEAUTY & FASHION Beauty Intelligence

The Linguist

|No|where |Now|here


New York Fashion Week

Standing Tall

Velvet Sunday

Emirati Tribes

Winter White

Sounds of the World

4 Men

The Arts

Men’s Trends

Future of Sports

City Drift 4


In a world immersed in technology, bombarded with information and a passion to merge the two, it’s nearly impossible not to be inspired by the perfect marriage of this Digital Enigma. Moved by this current era driven by technological experimentations, we were on the hunt for a paradise that epitomized this movement. To no surprise we found a city that single-handedly takes home world records for Standing Tall (page 6), inspires reflections and modernization within other cities (Reflections In Design page 30) and more impressively, builds cities within itself (Future of Sports Page 58). We found, Dubai: An impeccable alliance of old world opulence and the future.



So join us. Drift between worlds of fashion (City Drift page 64) and Gaze-Activated Dresses (page 40) adorned with photoluminescent thread and eye-tracking technology. Taste Dubai (page 20) and be moved by one of the greats, Rumi (page 37). Drink (page 18) to The Arts (page 16) and dance to the Sounds of the World (page 17). Bring the inspirations home (page 22) and join us online to dive deeper into the World’s biggest melting pot. The world’s “Vegas.” The world’s Digital Enigma.


This chapter is for those who manufacture the future and learn from their past. The talented and creative geniuses from around the globe that help push our human race forward. Here’s to the crazy ones, the misfits, the rebels, the troublemakers, the round pegs in the square holes... the ones who see things differently -- they’re not fond of rules... You can quote them, disagree with them, glorify or vilify them, but the only thing you can’t do is ignore them because they change things... they push the human race forward, and while some may see them as the crazy ones, we see genius, because the ones who are crazy enough to think that they can change the world, are the ones who do. - Steve Jobs | US computer engineer & industrialist (1955 - 2011) Maria Kontgis Founder & Artistic Director

Susi Kontgis Co-founder & Editor-in-Chief




Danette Acosta Managing Editor

Phoebe Davenport Creative Assistant

Joanna Hoodes Copy Editor

Dakota Anderson Production Designer

Avisha Sabaghian Creative Assistant

David Jones Online Director



“To build the world´s tallest building you will need close to $1.5 billion, 344,000 square meters of free space and six years.” WRITTEN BY // Danette Acosta | David Rambo PHOTOS BY // Nick Frank


A city that began as a fishing settlement, and later became a significant trading port, is today one of the most luxurious and one of the most expensive cities in the world. It is the epitome of the pursuit of excellence and perhaps the most lavish desert in history. It strives for nothing less than the grandest and spares no expense to attain it. A city that specializes in supreme opulence, it is a place unlike any and one you will not forget. We are talking about the one and only, Dubai. Ruled by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Dubai is one of seven emirates that make up the United Arab Emirates. Located on the northern coastline of the emirates and lying directly within the Arabian Desert, it discernibly has a hot desert climate. Summers in Dubai are windy, humid and tremendously hot, reaching temperatures on average of 108 degrees (42 C°). Winters are a bit more comfortable with average highs reaching 73 degrees (23 C°). Much of Dubai consists of sandy desert patterns comprised of fine, crushed shell and coral. Eastern Dubai includes flat, salt-crusted coastal plains known as sabkha, leading to a line of sand dunes that run north-south. Alongside Dubai’s border with Oman at Hatta, run the Western Hajar Mountains. With cooler temperatures and a rough landscape, The Western Hajar Mountains rise to an elevation of about 3,900 feet in some areas.

A Cosmopolitan City

Home to over two million people from over 200 nationalities, Dubai has the largest population in the United Arab Emirates and has become one of the most cosmopolitan metropolises in the world. Dubai is cultural diversity. Dubai is also the most modern and liberal emirate in the United Arab Emirates. Contrary to certain beliefs it is a great and safe place to live in. It is politically established with modern infrastructure, a great education system, healthcare facilities and tax-free salaries. When it comes to entertainment the options are endless. Dubai’s central location and accessibility to the East and West has also played a significant role in the growth of its population, business, and tourism. Its economy was built around the oil industry, but today depends mainly on real estate, financial services and tourism. Dubai has become a bustling commercial center and gateway to diverse markets. After going through a financial crisis in 2009, Dubai’s economy is recovering and steadily growing, specifically, in tourism. According to Dubai’s Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing, they have already had

5.5 million visitors the first half of this year. That represents an 11.1 percent year-on-year increase. The length of stay also increased, which has been recognized as a crucial element in reaching their vision for 2020 of 20 million visitors, double that of 2012.

World-Class Shopping and Entertainment

Dubai has become “synonymous with shopping.” It is home to the world’s largest shopping mall: The Dubai Mall, located inside the Burj Khalifa. It features 1,200 shops and has become the place to be, exceeding visitor numbers at major destinations and theme parks around the world, including New York’s Time Square and Central Park. People from all over the world come to live this unrivaled shopping experience. In fact for the serious shopper Dubai has an annual shopping festival. Yes a shopping festival. Every year from January 3rd to February 3rd since 1996, Dubai has hosted the ‘Shopping Festival’ in order to attract millions of people from around the world. Although it began as a way to boost trade and retail sales, the festival quickly became one of the most prominent tourist attractions in the region. It boasts everything from car and cash raffles, discounts on major brands to sporting events, to film festivals, to a “Global Village” showcasing the cultures and traditions of different countries. Not only is Dubai the shopping capital, it is also known as the “sporting capital” of the Middle East, offering something for all sport fans. Throughout the year numerous sporting events take place. Dubai hosts everything from the world’s richest horse race to the Dubai World Cup, the Dubai Desert Classic Golf Championship, the Dubai Tennis Championship, the Dubai Rugby Sevens, and Dubai’s 24 Race (a sports car and touring car automobile endurance race). The list keeps going.

Architectural Landmarks

In the desert, on the coast of the Persian Gulf, lays a city whose artificial islands, man-made canal cities and onefifth of the world´s tallest buildings, could be without doubt, considered to be the ultimate testament to mankind´s architectural triumph over its surroundings. Dubai, accommodating a population that has almost quadrupled since 1995 to its 2.2 million people (35 times the amount of its original census in 1968), has strived to maintain its cultural roots and old world opulence while adopting and adapting to the modern technology and international influences born from the rich diversity and imagination of its people.



Burj Khalifa

To build the world´s tallest building you will need close to $1.5 billion, 344,000 square meters of free space and six years. Skidmore, Owings and Merill, (the U.S. architectural firm that also designed the Willis Tower in Chicago and the One World Trade Center in New York City) set out to stand out among the rest of Dubai. They would build a massive edifice that would tower above, not only the rest of the city’s buildings, but those of the rest of the world. They would add a special blend of aesthetic beauty that would honor the surroundings as well as the United Arab Emirates’ history and traditions. They would do all of this while breaking more than 18 world records taking everything from nightclubs, restaurants and New Year’s fireworks to heights never seen before. The design for the 163-story Burj Khalifa (also referred to as the Burj Dubai) includes Islamic architectural patterning, a triple lobed footprint inspired by the Hymenocallis flower, 27 different terraces

and a Y-shaped floor plan that offers incredible views of the Persian Gulf. Apart from its aesthetic value, the Burj Khalifa also offers technological advances designed to maintain the building cool by drawing cooler air from higher floors. It has automated window washing and a system that moves 250,000 gallons of water per day throughout its enormous structure. On its opening day in March of 2010, it was evident that the Burj Khalifa was built to be the epitome of excellence and luxury. This building won the Middle East Architects’ Best Tall Building Award and the Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat´s Tall Building Global Icon Award. It combines space for everything from commercial, residential, public, artistic, and logistic to communication endeavors. It contains over 60 floors of residential space, 35 floors of corporate offices, 30 floors of the 5-star Armani Hotel, 14 floors housing the building’s mechanics, three different sky lobbies, the At The Top Observatory, and enough space for at least one partridge in a pear tree.


Outside of the building is the $217 million record breaking Dubai Fountain engineered by Wet Design of California (makers of the Las Vegas´ Bellagio Fountain). Also outside, the 27 acre Dubai Park (SWA Design Group) that also incorporates the Hymenocallis flower as an integral part of its design and is watered by the intrinsic condensation system of the Burj Khalifa that rises above it.

Burj Al Arab

Another of Dubai´s cherished architectural landmarks is the $650 million Burj Al Arab, referred to as the world´s only 7-star hotel. This massive structure nestled on top of a small island that is bridged to the nearby Jumeirah Beach is designed to look like a giant taunt sail standing fast in the wind. With 60 floors stretching over 1,053 feet this beauty offers incredible views, posh accommodations, fine dining and has a heliport for the arrival of your helicopter transfer from the Dubai International Airport.




The Fridge Dubai may have an accessible and progressive art scene, but emerging artists still struggle. Our featured artist, Shelley Frost, recognized this and did something about it. In response, she created The Fridge, a management and booking agency that also provides a performance, collaboration and rehearsal platform for artists in need. The venue accommodates not only musical artists, but dance, singing and acting all have a place on Shelley’s stage. “Our outreach is broad,” Shelley says, “and we feature the best that Dubai has to offer.” The Fridge adds an eclectic diversity to Dubai’s already vibrant nightlife. For more information on The Fridge and to watch Shelley’s awe-inspiring performance in the bubble, see esteromagazine. com., allows easy access to information on artists, venues and a plethora of other inspirational dealings that Shelley has worked hard to share and advance.


The Burj Al Arab´s panoramic elevator will lift you 660 feet above the Persian Gulf to the 27th floor and the Al Muntaha (Highest) Restaurant that offers Modern European cuisine accompanied by music from the house jazz band, a “smart casual” or semiformal dining environment and a comfortable dinner for two at around $1000. One of the seven other dining options will have you passing through a simulated submarine tour to the Al Mahara (Oyster) Restaurant and its 260,000 gallon seawater aquarium, seafood cuisine as well as its “smart casual” and semi-formal dining environment.

some of Dubai´s best shopping and lush residential areas. The Dubai Marina is also host to “The Tallest Block,” which boasts a good chunk of the world´s tallest buildings: The Cayan Tower, 23 Marina, Le Reve, The Sulafa Tower and The Princess Tower, the world´s tallest building since 2012, among others. The Dubai Marina´s lavish selection of hotels offers great views and plush accommodations, including the 5-star Habtoor Grand, The Address, The Dubai Marriott Harbour Suites, and the verdant, almost jungle-like setting of the Sheraton Jumeirah Beach Resort.

Every floor in this luxurious, 202 bedroom suite hotel is doublestory featuring a brightly colored brilliant mix of eastern and western design and ranging in size from 1800 to over 8000 square feet. Each guest room is appointed with luxury amenities and products to ensure your stay is not only relaxing and enjoyable, but fit for a king! The price tag for The Royal Suite will cost you $20,000 a night.

The Cayan Tower, once known as the Infinity Tower was completed in 2013. This 80-story, residential skyscraper is the tallest twisted tower in the world, with each level offsetting the last by 1.2 degrees over 75 floors to reach its 90-degree rotation. Located at the mouth of the Dubai Marina, the Cayan enjoys incredible views of the sea, the bay and the marina. The Cayan Tower offers life by design; residential units are spacious and include studios, one to four bedroom apartments, duplexes and penthouses. Facilities include an outdoor infinity pool and Jacuzzi, 24-hour concierge, a state-ofthe-art gym, and a world-class spa.

Cayan Tower

The luxurious Assawan Spa and Health Club at the Burj Al Arab offer a variety of services with a three-prong approach: wellbeing, relaxation and rejuvenation. Spa treatments range from full body massages to zone therapies that target certain areas, body wraps, anti-aging ceremonies, perfect body rituals and beauty enhancements. The Assawan is also available as the perfect spot for your wedding, providing a romantic moonlight swim package that will provide you with the perfect atmosphere for that special question.

A Paramount Host

There are many misconceptions about the Middle East. But let us tell you that Dubai is one of the most exciting, warm and welcoming places to visit. They are supremely skilled at being a paramount host, and the visitor is welcomed with hospitality at every juncture. This captivating city is constantly working on something new, bigger and better for you to experience and is serious about providing you with the finest of experiences. Once you have been enveloped in its extravagance, you will never vacation the same way again. There is only one Dubai. Luxury; come see it, taste it and live it.

Dubai Marina

Dubai Marina is the world´s largest man-made marina and artificial canal city. Designed to be a city within a city, Dubai Marina will eventually accommodate 120,000 people in a three square mile area. The Marina boasts close to 20 unique and unusual hotels,

PHOTO BY // Matthias Heiderich


EMIRATI tribes WRITTEN BY // SUSAN M. LEHMER INFOGRAPHIC // SARAH ALAGROOBI & MICHAEL DOSIER Tribes……..Who are we? Where did we come from? What do we do, and who do we marry? Sarah Alagroobi looked at all these questions and more as she analyzed her heritage, culture, traditions and the “duality” of the Emirati Tribes of the United Arab Emirates.

connection to generations past, present and future. This was her bloodline! However, after settling into the culture and society of the United Arab Emirates, Sarah experienced “culture shock,” a society vastly different from the familiar supportive one she experienced as a child.

Sarah Alagroobi was born in Brussels, Belgium to an Emirati father and a Syrian mother. Being raised in Belgium, she was encouraged to follow her dreams and to dream “big,” after all this was her birthright. The Belgium culture encouraged her to aspire to be the best she could be and likewise supported her and provided opportunities that helped her achieve these goals.

Society in the United Arab Emirates is still steeped in tradition, and is strictly based upon class (tribal association) structure and gender roles. On the outside much of the United Arab Emirates presents a very modern, futuristic and progressive society and commercial center within the Middle East; yet internally, opportunities for some “Emirati Tribes” were limited by social stigma and strict rules that govern its people, often creating a closed society, or a duality of sorts.

Later Sarah migrated to the United Arab Emirates to study at the American University of Sharjah and pursue a degree in Visual Communications. As an Emirati, this move connected her to her genealogical heritage and the essence of her “roots.” In the United Arab Emirates the family lineage is patriarchal, making the family follow the father’s name, nationality and social standing. This social fabric established part of Sarah’s identity and her

In order to better understand this phenomenon Alagroobi conducted research within the Emirati community and documented her findings in a touch screen infographic (one infographic revealing multiple layers of information). According to Alagroobi, “This project was constructed under the notion of uncovering the social stigmas that exist

in the Emirati society. Emirati society is dependent on genealogical understanding of societal ties.” In other words, your family name, which identifies your bloodline and “Tribal” association, dictates your position on the social ladder. Sarah’s research focused on the links between Emirati marriages, since that is an indicator of the extent to which social stigma exists within the Emirati society. For this project, four categories of Emirati were identified: 1. The royal family (primary tribe based) 2. The emiratis (pures - with a known tribe) 3. The emiratis (non-pures without a tribe. And they originally hail from countries like Iran, Yemen and India.) 4. The foreigners The question at the center of the infographic is whether or not the social classes mixed. Did a pure Emirati ever marry a non-pure Emirati? If so, how many were there? According to the Emirati society, Alagroobi’s society, these social stigmas did not exist. However, the infographic paints a different picture.

THE ARTS A Numerous and Growing Array. WRITTEN BY // TONY GONZALES

Dubai is known for being one of the richest and most luxurious cities on the planet. Characterized by features such as the tallest skyscraper in the world and entirely man-made islands, as well as heavily saturated with over 200 nationalities. It is no surprise that a city this diverse has grown to become a global hub drawing the most innovative and sought-after art from around the world. As the 22nd most expensive city, with its daunting skyscrapers and other marvels, it is a booming cultural and economic center. Not so surprisingly, it has also sparked a variety of unique and successful art communities and festivals.


One of those festivals is a film festival, and the oldest one at that. Held annually in December, the Dubai International Film Festival (DIFF) brings myriad cultures and perspectives from all over to share their stories and ideas through film. The festival first kicked off in 2004 and continues to entertain and educate each year. This weeklong cinephile’s paradise has participants that hail from Afghanistan to Zimbabwe. As part of initiatives within the Dubai Film Market designed to support and further develop Arab cinema, the DIFF offers sponsorships and awards like the Muhr Emirati, Arab and AsiaAfrica Awards that recognize exceptional local talent and award over $575,000 in prize money to winners. Also part of the festival, workshops and seminars are held each year, whereby professional filmmakers provide advice and experience to up-andcoming amateurs. The credo of the festival, “Bridging Cultures. Meeting Minds,” not only rightly assures a highly acclaimed program but an objective towards unity and global artistic synergy.


Dubai also hosts similarly themed music festivals. In late March, the My Music X Festival is held at the Atlantis Palm and constitutes three days packed full of exhilarating music. The event features an array of musical genres: pop stars, R&B singers, Arabic singers and an army of DJs. In recent years, many noted international stars performed, such as Akon, Baauer, Sean Paul, Eve, Cher, Lloyd, and DJ Premier. It’s also worth mentioning that Dubai also hosts a Jazz Festival in February and the DXB Festival in October. If you’re counting, that adds up to three music-dedicated, top-tier extravaganzas in just six months.



The serene side of Dubai, permeated with exhibit halls, art galleries and restaurants, is a whole different flavor of grand. Many high-end galleries are located in an area called Gate Village, where there is a day-long walking tour that encompasses the Caudro Fine Art Gallery, the Farjam Collection, The Opera Gallery, Ayyam Gallery, The Empty Quarter Gallery and XVA Gallery. The tour ends at an award-winning restaurant named La Petite Maison. Many more artistic areas dot the city, such as the Bastakiya, one of the oldest residential areas of Dubai and Al Quoz, an industrial district with warehouse galleries.


Literally a cut above the rest, The Act Dubai is the highest theater club in the world located on the 42nd and 43rd floors of the Shangri-La Hotel. Song, theater and special performances like sword throwing occur every night from dozens of international performers. The 10,000 square foot club actually had to double its seating capacity because demands were so great.

Dubai Opera House

In an effort to further nourish its ever-growing artistic community, the city of Dubai is in the midst of constructing the Dubai Opera House. Located on an artificial chain of islands known as the Lagoon District, this 2,500-seat home of the auditory arts also features an art gallery, an 800-seat playhouse, a theater, a themed hotel, a performing arts school, and a marina. Rising from the surface of a creek in the Pearl District, twin peaks that look like dunes of sand will become a new landmark as the first opera house in the Middle East. Zaha Hadid designed the Opera House, with the structure nestled gently into the landscape in style of postmodern deconstructive architecture. It boasts steep curves and a wavy aesthetic that will blend naturally with the surroundings. As a global hub, Dubai is no doubt impressive when it comes to its world-class art communities and institutions. We at ESTERO are excited to see, hear and learn what comes next from the artists of Dubai.

Check out for our entire international playlist.



1. We Can Be Ghosts Now (feat. Shura) - Hiatus 2. James Vincent McMorrow - Wicked Game (Gestort Aber Geil & Starfox Spring Edit) 3. Flamenco Al Arabia in Dub - Zeb - the Spy from Cairo 4. I miss you - Ta-ku 5. Nu - Man O To

ESTERO’s featured mixologist for our Fall 2013 issue is Missy Scarbrough, who has felt quite comfortable behind the bar for the last 10 years.


Scarbrough shares the opinion of most mixologists, that you must know your base liquors to create a balanced and satisfying cocktail. “It all starts with the classics,” she says. She mentions that creating a pleasing and satisfying cocktail is an art and a science and adds that research and experimenting is part of the process of finding and creating that balance. Scarbrough’s creativity and talent doesn’t stop at cocktails, but also branches out into the world of fashion. However, her love of bartending runs deep and a small tattoo of a martini on her finger proudly exhibits her passion. “No matter how successful I become elsewhere, I’d like to open up my own bar at some point,” she says. Recently, Scarbrough shared her experience and creativity to create our very own delicious ESTERO cocktail.

ESTERO COCKTAIL Muddle four, 3-inch cubes of honeydew melon in pint glass. Add juice of lemon slice, vodka, Barenjager Honey Liqueur and ice. Cover with shaking tin and shake well. Coat the inside of a tall champagne glass with Pernod and honey. Strain mixture into glass. Serve and enjoy! / honeydew melon, cut into 3-inch cubes / slice of lemon / 1.5 oz. vodka / 1 oz. Barenjager Honey Liqueur / Pernod / honey / ice

Inspired by the heat and warm flavors of Dubai, we introduce this fall’s mix: The Dainty.


SHELLEY FROST BREAKING STEREOTYPES WRITTEN BY // JOANNA HOODES PHOTOS // COURTESY OF SHELLEY FROST With its simple and versatile structure, the harp dates back to the first sprouts of civilization in Mesopotamia. Found in 3,000-year-old royal Egyptian tombs and elaborate Persian illustrations, it is the oldest known stringed instrument. As it spread throughout the world, the harp has gone through many transformations and upgrades. Today there is a variety of harps: pedal harps, lap harps, cross-strung, double-strung, electric, etc. Whether one is playing modern, classical, acoustic, jazz or any type of music, the rich tradition and flexibility of the harp elevates it from being simply an instrument to a true calling. It is fitting that this ethereal instrument haunted musician Shelley Frost throughout her childhood. Now a freelance harpist playing for the likes of princes, Kanye West, and Chanel CEOs in Dubai, the native South African has long since conquered that ghost and returned it to its place of origin. Born in the beach-laced Port Elizabeth, Shelley was raised on the piano and violin. It was not until she was a 20-year-old student at the University of Cape Town that Shelley and the harp were introduced and she hasn’t looked back since. Years later, after earning an additional degree at the Lyon Conservatoire in France, Shelley found herself in need of a crucial element: a new harp. As her instrument was fast becoming outdated, Shelley agreed to a fiveyear contract with the Jumeirah Beach Hotel in Dubai. The profits would go towards a new harp, Shelley relates when asked about the reasons for relocating to, as she puts it, a true “center of the world.” “The city of Dubai is unbelievably cosmopolitan,” she says. “There is such a strong entrepreneurial spirit and so much forward movement here,” she continues while describing her flourishing and multifaceted harp career that one might not expect from such a seemingly formulaic instrument. It is in this way that the harp is very much like the city of Dubai: both face stereotypes and conjured images that may have nothing to do with reality. Continuing with cases of stereotypes, the harp seems to have acquired baggage of its own. One glimpse at a Shelley Frost concert or a snippet of the eclectic world music she prefers to play, and one knows she is not your typical classical musician. Shelley’s style is decidedly unorthodox and expressive. She is encouraged to do things “bigger and better” each time she performs, a mantra that runs through Dubai’s culture as well. Shelley creates a 360-degree performance, planning every visual element along with the music. In some cases, an event-goer’s instinct veers towards images of the angelic and sweet when they hear the word “harp.” As a response, Shelley dons costumes like black leather corsets with slits up the skirt. Like Dubai, Shelley wants to break stereotypes and remind people that it is healthy to push the envelope. For now, Shelley’s roots are in Dubai and she plans to continue making that sweet music for all to hear and all to hail.



PENNE PASTA WITH CHICKPEA SAUCE / 90 oz. drained cooked chickpeas (2 #10 cans) / 6 cups cold water / 3 cups extra virgin olive oil / 4 small dried chile peppers (crumbled) / 12 garlic cloves, chopped fine / 4 large yellow or white onions, 2 pulsed to a mush in the Robocoup 2 fine diced / 10 tbsp. minced Italian flatleaf parsley / 1 tbsp. minced fresh rosemary / 1 tbsp. minced fresh thyme / 75 medium basil leaves (roughly chopped) / 4 bay leaves (fresh if possible) / 18 whole peeled stewed tomatoes, seeded and chopped / kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper / 5lbs. cooked good quality penne pasta



PROCEDURE Remove 2 cups whole chickpeas and reserve. Puree the rest of the chickpeas with the water and process until smooth. In a large saucepan heat the olive oil over medium heat with the crushed chile and garlic until the garlic is just translucent. Add the onion, parsley, rosemary, thyme, basil, and bay leaf. Cook, stirring, for about 6-9 minutes until everything is stewing nicely in the oil. Add the whole chickpeas, pureed chickpeas, tomatoes, salt and pepper and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer, covered, for about 30 minutes, stirring every 8-10 minutes. Keep an eye on the amount of liquid in the mix as it is cooking. You may need to add a small amount of water if the sauce seems like it’s reducing too much. After 30 minutes, remove from the heat, remove the bay leaves and discard them, and allow the sauce to cool for storage. For service the sauce may be served on its own or with bay shrimp for a slightly different version. For service, heat a pat of butter in a sautÊ pan and add a small pinch of shallot. Sweat briefly, then deglaze with a touch of extra dry sherry. Add a few spoonfuls of sauce to the pan and add your cooked pasta. Toss to coat and reduce the amount of liquid slightly to infuse the pasta with the flavor of the sauce and make it a bit tighter. If using the bay shrimp, add the shrimp when sweating the shallot, then finish the recipe in the same manner already described. Garnish with some chopped fresh herbs. 20

The Arabs have a beautiful saying “daifallah,” meaning guests from God. This might explain their kind and generous nature. Enter any Arabic home and you will be welcomed, fed, fed again and welcomed back again and again. For Arabs, hospitality lies at the heart of who they are. The insistence to ensure their guests eat, and eat well, before them is deeply embedded. Dubai, once just a land for wandering Bedouin who welcomed guest into their tents to enjoy aromatic meals and spiced teas, is now a thriving multicultural city full of flavors, colors, customs and life. And the consequence to the diversity in this great city: endless culinary options that await you. ESTERO would like you to experience some of the warm and wonderful flavors of Dubai and shares with you these delectable recipes. Enjoy!


1⁄2 oz fresh mint (stems discarded) 1 – 1 1⁄2 cups grapeseed or canola oil pinch of kosher salt 1-2 medium size zucchini: ends trimmed, sliced lengthwise in “tongues” approximately 1⁄4 inch thick kosher salt ground black Telicherry peppercorns grapeseed or canola oil for grilling 2 tbsp. whole fennel seeds (toasted) 3 oz. homemade or store-bought fresh labneh 1 tsp. ground black cardamom small mint leaves for garnish fleur de sel, grey sel de guerande, or other good sea salt

PROCEDURE For the mint oil, place the mint, grapeseed oil, and pinch of salt in the jar of a good, high-speed blender (such as a Vitamixer or Blend-Tec). Make a cold bain marie by filling a medium-size mixing bowl partially with ice, then setting a smaller mixing bowl inside it on the ice. Blend the mint and oil in the blender on high speed until the oil itself starts to feel warm when touching the outside of the blender jar. Remove the minted oil immediately to the cold bain marie, and stir gently using a rubber spatula until the oil is completely cooled. Place the cooled oil into an airtight container and set in the freezer overnight. The following day, remove the oil and allow it to come to room temperature. Strain the oil through a fine mesh sieve lined with a piece of cheesecloth and discard the filtered solids. Place the oil in a squeeze bottle or other container and refrigerate until ready to use. For the dish/assembly, first grill the zucchini over medium heat on a grill plate or charcoal or wood grill. Rub the zucchini slices lightly with a bit of oil, then season ever so slightly with salt and pepper. Gently grill the zucchini slices making sure to get a nice crosshatch pattern from the grill on each side of the slice. As the zucchini is coming off, place it either on a wire rack, or a small sheet pan or cookie sheet, lined with parchment paper. Be careful to lay the slices out flat in single layers separated by more parchment paper as necessary. Lightly crack/crush the fennel seeds with the back of a saute pan and reserve. Using a rubber spatula, fold the black cardamom into the labneh and reserve. Roll each zucchini “tongue” into a roulade and place in an offset row on a plate. Drizzle with the mint oil, sprinkle with a few granules of fleur de sel and a touch of the toasted fennel seeds. Place a small dollop of labneh inside each roulade, sprinkle with a few small mint leaves or a bit of mint chifonade, and serve. 21

CLASSICAL design WRITTEN BY // Joanna Hoodes DESIGNER // Rakan Jandali AGENCY // KCA International Rakan Jandali, a highly talented 27-year-old 3D digital artist from Syria, is a master at taking visual and conceptual inspiration and elevating it to beautiful interior architecture. As Head of the Visual Department at the interior design firm, KCA International, Jandali lives in Dubai designing and creating interior landscapes and products. Jandali discovered his passion for digital art at a young age and quickly developed his skills in both 2D and 3D rendering in order to create realistic visual pieces. Akin to ESTERO’s own idea of taking exterior inspiration to create interior elements, Jandali’s deep appreciation for abstract art and artists like Hrair Diarbekirian, Piet Mondrian and Salvador Dalí, provides a unique foundation with which he designs and creates lush interiors and notably architectural pieces. As a Middle Eastern native, Jandali can’t help but be influenced by the culture and tradition that has surrounded him throughout his life. Dubai, although steeped in unprecedented development and advanced technology, still carries the pride of its traditions and heritage, creating elements that can be labeled as “classically Dubai.” Jandali’s 3D rendered spaces epitomize ESTERO’s penchant for United Arab Emirates-inspired classic décor like drapes, arches and traditional patterns. His digital representations of living rooms, dining rooms and libraries are visually poignant yet timeless. His spaces spotlight comfort accentuated with grand features like floor-to-ceiling, delicately arched windows framed by dense, lavish drapes, or patterned rugs that mirror intricately cutout window and wall embellishments.


TRI TRO CHAIR “This is a concept design of a modern chair created using a series of triangles put together to create an elegant chair design. I loved the way the chair ended up ‌ you can always see elegant triangles from any point you look at it.â€? Jandali also feels decidedly at home with the modern and the futuristic, which are core themes when it comes to Dubai. Recently, he designed a bold, ultra-modern chair called the Tri Tro Chair that speaks of his architectural talent and innovative vision.







MODERN DESIGN Jandali expands this geometric sensibility to interior areas as well. Harnessing the artistic elements of Dutch artist, Piet Mondrian and the abstract, essentialist ideas of the De Stijl movement of the early 1920s (of which Mondrian was a part), Jandali designed rooms using straight, simple black lines and bold blocks of primary colors. Again wielding his 3D brilliance to showcase one in particular, he divides this room into five units using squares that sit at different levels around the room, mirroring Mondrian’s visual manipulation of size and dimension. The thick lines that divide the Mondrian pieces are not only used to texturize the windows, but also the shelving unit and walls. The modern floors and ceiling add dimension to the room by manipulating the elevation of the individual squares that comprise them. Jandali uses Mondrian’s signature red, yellow and blue combination to add pops of colors throughout the room in an elegant and simple way. For the 3D designer, no detail is neglected: “The feature wall behind the bed is a series of boxes popping in and out with inset lighting to add a dramatic look to the room especially at night.” The result is modern, simple and inspired. It carries a futuristic feel with artistic understanding. As an artist, designer and pathpaver, Rakan Jandali is truly one of the best Dubai has to offer in the interior design world, and we can’t wait to see what he renders next.


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ARCHITECTURE Symmetry is the art of repeating a design to make a balanced pattern. Artists employ symmetry to create an appealing aesthetic to their work, and architects employ symmetry to create a sense of balance and beauty to their buildings. Reflective symmetry in architecture adds an additional dimension to buildings that while aesthetically pleasing, can often trick the eye and create an optical illusion. What do you see?


PHOTOGRAPHER // Jutta Sugden

PHOTO BY // Matthias Heiderich

The Linguist Poetry, a Cultural Foundation

WRITTEN BY // Joanna Hoodes PHOTOGRAPHER // Petia Cholakova

As a cultural foundation, poetry has been present since the beginnings of civilization in the United Arab Emirates. In a region that boasts a rich and diverse language, as well as a religion that is rooted in a strictly poetic text, poetry burns bright as a capstone of artistic pursuit. Although pre-Islamic Arab cultures already possessed a history of expressive speech and a love of language, today the deep respect and importance attributed to the art of poetry is strongly linked to its role in the Qur’an, the backbone of the religion of Islam. One should not try to read the Qur’an as a conventional narrative with linear story form. Instead, it is the language itself, and the exercise and experience of its oral and aural expression that is the crucial aspect. Within the religion, the recitation of the poetic verses in the Qur’an induces a specific spiritual state and is considered inimitable and miraculous. The importance of Arabic, the language used in the Qur’an, and the specific linguistic devices used, make the text, in a sense, untranslatable and highly unique. Throughout history, noted scholars, cultural icons and religious leaders used poetry to teach, influence and express their beliefs and ideas to their societies. For example, the famous 13th century poet, mystic and theologian Muhammad Jalal-Ud-Din Rumi (often called Rumi) created a legacy that is still highly valued today by Muslims and non-Muslims alike. Rumi’s poems are used as a guide for everyday life, to reach a more spiritual or religious state and as a way to answer life’s deep, philosophical questions. Today, Rumi’s poetic form is now the basis of much Middle Eastern music, his teachings are used by non-Muslims as an


introduction to the Islamic tradition of Sufism (Islamic mysticism) and his philosophy still promotes love, harmony, peace and selfdiscovery all over the world. At present, the United Arab Emirates still strongly embraces poetry as a cultural hallmark and it is written and recited for a wide range of occasion by all ranks and positions. The current Sheikh of the United Arab Emirates, Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, is a noted and talented poet himself and has been writing and sharing his poetry from a young age. His specific style is that of Nabati poetry. Nabati is a colloquial form of Arabic native to the Arabian Peninsula and spoken since the 16th century. This particular form of poetry is held dear by many in the region and is unique both in its historical context and its content and function. It is said to be spontaneous, yet refreshingly direct and is known for its depictions and descriptions of the truths of everyday life. Today, Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum strongly encourages the preservation and spread of Nabati poetry, which has been dying out as of late, by crafting and publishing Nabati riddles and then rewarding the best answers, which must be in the form of a Nabati poem. The art of poetry in the United Arab Emirates is something to be admired and replicated. Its deep influence and the obvious passion it incites are sure to live on as a bedrock of Middle Eastern culture and as an artistic and spiritual haven for many individuals.

“The Guest House” This being human is a guesthouse. Every morning a new arrival. A joy, a depression, a meanness, some momentary awareness comes as an unexpected visitor. Welcome and entertain them all! Even if they’re a crowd of sorrows, who violently sweep your house empty of its furniture, still, treat each guest honorably. He may be clearing you out for some new delight. The dark thought, the shame, the malice, meet them at the door laughing, and invite them in. Be grateful for whoever comes, because each has been sent as a guide from beyond.

“The Setting Sun” The Setting Sun When she emerges, the sun disappears, And the moonlight shyly dims.

- Rumi, Jalal-Ud-Din “The Guest House.” The Essential Rumi. Trans. Coleman Barks with John Moyne. New York: HarperCollins Publishers Inc., 1995. Print. -

People risk their lives, in the face of such beauty, Which is precisely what she expects. She brings peace to my heart, The only balm for my open wounds. Her love has driven me insane, When love is such a divine gift. She lightly increased her gait, As breezes blew from the north. Her hair cascaded down her shoulders, Enticing, yet coy and bashful. Her jeweled eyes mystical, Reflecting serene colors of the sea. She was so elegant, merely turning her neck, Like an unexpected drizzle from the clouds. I saw rivers running along her eyelids, And tears within them, like sailing ships. - Mohammed bin Rashin Al Maktoum. “The Setting Sun.” Other Poems., n.d. Web. 28 July 2013. -


STYLING // Jojo Dantespadua ASSISTANT // Danilo Quiambao MODEL // Zuzana Strelcova WARDROBE // Furne Amato Couture | Amato Haute Couture Creations

BEAUTY INTELLIGENCE Dubai, a young and fashion-conscious population, ignites trends, with a higher spending beauty propensity

WRITTEN BY // Maritza Buelvas PHOTOGRAPHER // Alex Callueng Beauty and personal care has long been rooted in Middle Eastern culture. Evidence dates the first makeup application back to Ancient Egypt and fragrances have been a part of Arab life since the 9th century. Today, beauty and personal care is a massive, viable market in the Middle East, particularly for international cosmetics and toiletries manufacturers, with the United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia leading the way in market size. In fact, the United Arab Emirates has one of the largest beauty and personal care industries in the world, with its demand virtually untouched by the global economic downturn. Women in the United Arab Emirates are among the most beauty conscious in the Middle East region, fuelling rapid growth in the sale of beauty and personal care products. Dubai women have long placed high value on their appearance, recognized as big spenders on beauty, skin care and hair care. More and more, women are spending their disposable incomes on sophisticated skin care routines and premium skin care products with skin whitening and anti-aging products coming in as high sellers. “…Women [in Dubai] spend large amounts on beauty and skin care products and we are seeing this increase further in recent years which is driving growth in an already strong market,” said CEO of Epoc Messe and organizer for the region’s most popular beauty trade event, Ahmed Pauwels. The Middle East, Central Asia and North African regions are continuously seeing a growing range of international brands, developing state-of-the-art cosmetic innovations to fulfill the needs of fashion conscious trendsetters. The United Arab Emirates is not only in sync with the latest trends, but is a chic trendsetter.

The upward spike in cosmetic products has been attributed to several factors, most notably the United Arab Emirate’s strategic location as a gateway for imports and exports. Another instrumental factor is the flourishing population, which has enjoyed an increase in purchasing power. The beauty industry helps the economy even during downturns. Cosmetics are daily necessities that ignite other economic activities and the United Arab Emirates is focused on staying upto-date with the latest trends. Consumer spending on cosmetics and perfumes in the United Arab Emirates is expected to hit 1.2 billion by 2014, which bodes well for the growth of the beauty products industry. There is also a growing global consumer demand for spas. Spa facilities are becoming the norm in many hotels and resorts. Tourists are expecting spa beauty rituals to form their overall holiday experience. Consequently, relaxing at a residential spa is becoming a popular holiday choice for stressed consumers wishing to unwind, and for those seeking experiences over material goods. With a trend towards natural ingredients and fewer chemicals in skin and hair care products, natural products prevail in the spa arena. Fashion-beauty expert and grooming advisor to many of Dubai’s prestigious 5-Star hotel proprieties, Terri Allen, states that there’s a trend towards luxe, high-performing, natural beauty products, favoring brands like NATURA BISSÉ and Elemis, with color stories being driven by seasonal climates and global fashion. “[Dubai] consumers are increasingly more particular about the products they buy,” said CEO of GK Hair, Mr. Van Tibolli. “It is important to convey to them that products are made from the finest ingredients to gain wider acceptance,” Tibolli added. * Sources available online at


|no|where |now|here: A Pair of Gaze-Activated Dresses PhotographER // Dominique Lafond WRITTEN BY // Joanna Hoodes DESIGNER // Ying Gao


Ying Gao, a fashion designer and professor at the Université du Québec à Montréal, ingeniously challenges the conventions of clothing with a series called (no)where (now) here. The project consists of two dresses made of photoluminescent thread embedded with eye-tracking technology, which is activated by the unfixed gaze of the onlooker. The intention, and stimulating result, is a subtle play between clarity and obscurity, movement and stillness, presence and disappearance.

Gao links her inspiration to Paul Virilio’s essay, “Esthétique de la disparition” (The Aesthetic of Disappearance), in which he discusses the immediate and transient nature of absence, and the subsequent and just as immediate reconstruction and continuity of time. For her dresses, the fashion designer pulls from urban design, multimedia, and architecture, and translates these subjects into an exploration of garment construction and sensory technology. The two pieces are playful and interactive, yet they also question the relationship between the individual, their physical contours, and external interferences that may transform these contours. Ying Gao’s globally-recognized designs not only push the boundaries of fashion design, they also keenly represent the rapidly-mutating world in which we now live.


STEP AHEAD {SNEAK PEEK INTO SPRING/SUMMER 2014 COLLECTIONS} | NEW YORK Once more, this award-winning event is preparing and providing the opportunity for independent designers to showcase their collections at this year’s Nolcha Fashion Week, presented by RUSK Spring/Summer 2014 Runway Shows. Nolcha’s consistent “reputation as a hot incubator of new fashion design talent” is ready to do it again. Introducing a sneak peek into our staff’s picks for must-have accessories right off the runway and a brief look into what inspired other collections. Check out to see more of the runways, designer inspirations, and more!

Designer Name: Noémie Arrigo Label Name: Bijoux Coquette Signature Style: A Bijoux Coquette jewel is a nude almost intangible luxury on the skin. For women being elegant but feeling free and wild as the red luster in gold.

Designer Name: Mariana Lira Label Name: Mariana Valentina Signature Style: Femme Fatale, Seductress, and Goddess with Sensual Fluidity.

Designer Name: Adi Gal + Gili Rozin Label Name: MeDusa Signature Style: Our vision is simply to keep innovating through design and creating wearable art. Today, the heart of our brand is in the alternative choice of material, it’s about the plastic and the unique way in which it is processed.


Designer Name: Kerry Leikus Label Name: Keggy Inspiration: Marc Chagall’s circus paintings. Following my graduate work at Vanderbilt, I interned at the Art Institute of Chicago where I had access to the exhibits prior to the museum’s opening every morning. I walked the Institute’s hallways and corridors a million times in awe of the masterpieces surrounding me. Chagall’s stained glass wall of windows was one of my favorite spots to visit and to this day he remains my favorite artist-the ultimate romanticist, painting a dreamlike and mystical, color infused world.

Designer Name: Chetna Singh Label Name: Chetnasingh Inspiration: My upbringing in India has had a strong influence on me. People and mythology fascinate me and is reflected in all my artwork and in turn, my scarves.

Designer Name: Jessica Rizzuti Label Name: Jess Rizzuti NY Inspiration: Jess is inspired by her surroundings, and her work reflects simple daily pleasures as well as worldly travels. She values the skill and craftsmanship of artisans around the globe and is forever eager to learn other art forms and techniques. She has contributed to two major philanthropic organizations, collaborating with them to make products, which were then sold to greater benefit their cause. A portion of the proceeds directly provided to the sustainability of the communities. FEATURED DUBAI DESIGNER | Baruni Baruni’s designs definitely reflect her strong personality and attitude. One could even say they reflect her journey. Her designs are all business, yet elegant. They are practical and comfortable, yet sophisticated. They are “take-charge,” yet graceful. As part of her vision, Baruni expresses that “women should look elegant and sophisticated. However, it is just as important to me that the garments are wearable. My clothes need to make a statement of individuality.” Her customers agree. They keep coming back for more. Check out for more on local Dubai talent, Baruni and the women behind the collections.



SUNDAY PHOTOGRAPHER // Petia Cholakova POST PRODUCTION // Orlin Hristov REALIZATION // PetOrly ASSISTANT PHOTOGRAPHER // Minail Dimitrov MAKE-UP // Krasimira Petrova HAIR // Margarita Doseva MODEL // Adeline Vaher-Vahter


Break out of the routine and amp up your neutral fall wardrobe with a pop of red. Accessories are a great way to add some color and complete your whole look.




Fall in line and add military inspired pieces to your wardrobe. Anything with oversized buttons and a tailored look will keep you right on point with this trend.

The roaring twenties are back in style and It’s all about finding pieces with lavish detail and organic motifs. Think modern Great Gatsby and you won’t go wrong!



Jewel tones are quintessential for fall and we’re dying over emerald. This color of the year works as an accent, or focal point when mixed in with a neutral palate. Adding velvet to the color could only make it more luxurious.


Let architecture inspire your wardrobe with pieces that have accentuated new angles. Structured pieces are a brilliant way to make a statement. Dramatic lines add a twist on classic pieces that just can’t be ignored.


WINTER WHITE PHOTOGRAPHER // Petia Cholakova POST PRODUCTION // Orlin Hristov REALIZATION // PetOrly MODEL // Hristiyana Dimitrova




MYN Fall/Winter ‘13/14 PHOTOGRAPHER // Omer Faruk Gokalp HAIR & MAKE-UP // Samet Kilci WARDROBE // MYN KNITWEAR STYLING // Burak Kocamer ASSISTANT // Murat Altinkaya MODEL // Vincent | Select Model Agency SPECIAL THANKS // GARAGE 212 PRODUCTIONS


WRITTEN BY // DANETTE ACOSTA PHOTOGRAPHER // TIM TADDER & CGI ARTIST MIKE CAMPAU Sports advertising photographer, Tim Tadder and renowned digital artist, Mike Campau collaborated to produce The Future of Sports. The project represents a fine balance of traditional photography and modern technology fused with precision to create a new genre of sports illustration. Tim photographed prominent local athletes in the studio, capturing their movement and the essence of their sport, and then Mike digitally engineered the background and environments. The result is captivating and riveting, just like the city of sports in Dubai. Imagine a city whose main purpose is to accommodate the sports fanatic. Imagine a city where “at its heart beats the very essence of sport,” and where if you choose to be a resident, you quite literally live sports. To some this may sound like a dream, but in Dubai it is fast becoming a reality. This fascinating dream is that of three leading entrepreneurs from the United Arab Emirates: Abdulrahim Al Zarooni, Abdulrahman Bukhatir and Abdulrahman Falaknaz. Their vision of creating a premier destination for the world of sports once more demonstrates that Dubai believes in no limits when it comes to enjoying life.

© 2012 Tim Tadder and CGI artist Mike Campau



Š 2012 Tim Tadder and CGI artist Mike Campau

Rolex Daytona 18kt yellow gold

Š 2012 Tim Tadder and CGI artist Mike Campau

Dubai Sports City, also termed as a city within a city, is set on 50 million square feet within the Dubailand development. It will feature a Cricket stadium with a 25,000-seat capacity, a 10,000-seat, multi-purpose indoor arena for ice hockey, hard court games, concerts and events. It will also feature a 60,000-seat, multi-purpose indoor stadium, as well as a 60,000seat, multi-purpose outdoor stadium, both for soccer, rugby, and track and field events. Already active and functioning is the Cricket Stadium and The Els Club, an 18-hole, championship golf course. The Els Club is the first golf course in the Middle East designed by Ernie Els. Along with these magnificent sports facilities, The Academies campus is also being developed. It will include a high performance gymnasium, sports science and rehabilitation facilities, and worldwide training and development brands. “Socatots,” which is within the Football Academy, is one of those development academies. It is the world’s first soccer pre-school, where as young as six months, children can begin their soccer training. Dubai Sports City will consist of major residential and commercial developments with all that is expected of a city. Along with the sporting venues mentioned, schools, medical facilities, community centers and shopping destinations will all be part of what Dubai Sports City offers. Aside from striving to be the world’s premier sporting destination, their mission is not just to entertain but also to encourage an active life and healthy living by providing a real community for their residents focused on sport. They want to deliver the complete lifestyle experience. Dubai Sports City is “a place where sport is life, champions live, and legends are made.”

CITY DRIFT Drift between cities and transcend to the future with modern layers and sophisticated styling. Find out why we’re loving oversized, classic sweaters with a futuristic vibe.

PHOTOGRAPHER // José Ferreira HAIR // André Neto Oliveira for Metro Studio MAKE-UP // Bia Verri STYLING // Tiago Ferreira ASSISTANT //Maria Benedita MODEL // Joana Hamrol | L’ agence







Estero's NYFW Fall '13 Issue explores the melting pot of Dubai, United Arab Emirates. This issue includes futuristic editorials, men's fashi...


Estero's NYFW Fall '13 Issue explores the melting pot of Dubai, United Arab Emirates. This issue includes futuristic editorials, men's fashi...