Our look at the leading design fair in the Middle East which, more than the others, allows for a meeting of cultures and creativity on the theme of design

To the candid tensile structure that welcomes Downtown Design, the center that hosts the event Dubai Design Week 2022, you arrive by crossing a large open space and one of the many, very vast, avenues, immediately outside the Dubai Design District (d3).

The first tip, therefore, is to take advantage of one of the numerous (free) electric machines that shuttle from one place to the other, to avoid starting your visit to the fair already hot.

Yes, because even at the beginning of November - the Dubai Design Week 2022 took place from 8 to 13 -  the central hours of the day can be fatal for temperature and humidity, especially for those arriving, perhaps running, from the West.

Four collateral exhibitions distributed between the fair pavilion and the adjacent design district: d3 Architecture Exhibition, UAE Designer Exhibition curated by Cyril Zammit, Design in the Metaverse of MetaDecrypt and Matter-ials, a series of installations interiors that demonstrate the positive impact that design can have on the environment based on the materials used.

What catches the eye, at first impact, entering the fair?

The layout of the stands, rows and corridors is the same as in many other design events, but the exhibitors who alternate bring with them ideas, projects, materials, products from places geographically very distant, here instead, close one to the other.

There are local brands from Dubai and the other six Emirates, companies from the near Middle East, South Asia and North Africa and much European participation: some brands - the smallest and most artisanal - present in person, others with dealers in the area.

The fair, in short, hosted over 200 brands and designers from all over the world, with a section dedicated to limited and bespoke editions, Downtown Editions, an ideal platform for galleries , individual studios and local collectives.

Below is our selection.

RAK Ceramics

A company specializing in the production of ceramic and porcelain stoneware floor and wall coverings, as well as sanitary ware and table accessories, it is one of the largest ceramic brands in the world, founded in 1989 in the emirate of Ras al-Khaima from which got its name.

With nine showrooms in the UAE alone, it represents the major source of inspiration and the most important supply hub for interior designers in this area. In the last five years, the brand has experienced a remarkable evolution, thanks to the activity of the Italian vice president Leonardo de Muro who led together with the Italian team the development in the direction of sustainability, design and production technology together.

So much so that, just recently, RAK has launched its Metaverse project to offer access to a sophisticated and participatory virtual showroom.

In the Ras al-Khaima headquarters, the largest production hub of the 24 factories present globally, Leonardo de Muro has also created a Design Innovation Center: 7 rooms where the new models under research and approval, not yet in production, renewed every 2-3 weeks.

A path full of stimuli and a source of brainstorming among the company's professionals.

Last note not to be missed to try to understand the international success of the RAK world: the collaboration between the company and the Elie Saab brand, a Lebanese designer known for creating clothes particularly loved by celebrities.

Raghad Al Ali

By alternating giant companies and small brands, just as happens in the corridors of Dubai Design Week, we came across the unique piece exhibited by the Palestinian architect and designer, heir of a family of glassmakers, Raghad Al Ali, the luminous mirror  Nude Pink.

The mirror was born from a research carried out through experiments with different molds and silica compositions, to reach, with glass, planes other than the horizontal one.

Trame Paris

With an instantaneous trip between continents, we land in Paris, or rather the presence of Paris in Dubai and the proposals of Trame Paris, simply placed on a flounced display stand highlighted by its sunny yellow colour.

The proposals of Trame Paris, carpets and accessories for the home, arise from the skilful combination of craftsmanship and digital technology and from a curious gaze and from the conviction of the importance of the encounter between cultures.

The name of the brand refers to the weaving of the carpets, the heart of the collection, but also to the intersection of the voices and gazes of the designers and craftsmen involved.

Island Design

Curated design platform, active online and offline, Isola Design participated in Dubai Design Week 2022 with a limited selection of representative pieces from the designers of its Community which, in total, has over 800 innovative designers and more than 1,300 projects.

Together As One, the year's theme of Island, was also maintained in Dubai, to encourage each party involved to become part of a conscious whole strong> that no longer considers design only as the result of a process, but the process itself.

A method for building solutions that bring people together in order to face the challenges of the present by overcoming borders and taking advantage of the opportunity to be together.

Veuve Clicquot

It celebrated its 250th anniversary in Dubai with a pop-up installation, The Solair Lounge, divided between the inside and outside of the pavilion, inspired by the nature of the place and paved with sand from the UAE.

The double lounge of Veuve Clicquot involved visitors with events and workshops, welcomed in the cafeteria area and stimulated with the exhibition of its most emblematic objects revisited in a sustainable way.

The strong belief of the Maison is that an elegant and functional packaging can itself become part of the desirability of the product, therefore it becomes even more important to create it with attention to sustainability.

The objects in the proposed collection have been designed to last, free from plastic and 100% recyclable, in line with the brand's commitment to reduce its emissions by 50% by 2030.


The Minotti novelties were staged in Dubai in collaboration with Aati, exclusive partner in the UAE.

The set-up, inspired by the mood of the Minotti pavilion presented in June at the Salone del Mobile in Milan, proposed an engaging journey to discover the new furnishing elements.

To highlight the proposals and allow the gaze, distracted by the brightness of the sky, the sea and the light of Dubai, the floor and walls of the stand were black, respectively in riverrei striato and in firpolished.

Also in this case, the chapter dedicated to technology was not missing, resolved with a large video wall where images of the digital project Minotti Pavilion and of Waterrock Boutique Hotel & Villas dedicated to the 2022 Hopsitality collection.


Independent presence, the company Klodea specialized in the production of handles and accessories and born on the outskirts of Milan in 2015.

Combined expression of ergonomics and beauty, Klodea's luxury furniture hardware is characterized by the search for a language that conveys meanings that often translates into fluid shapes that imitate the balance of natural elements .

The 11 collections, made with craftsmanship, are ready in Zamac, a high purity zinc alloy and define the unmistakable character of these handles .


Lebanese Armenian designer Nareg Krikorian presented Gaar, a collection of leather furniture originally designed for his master's thesis at Central Saint Martins.

In making the fetish-inspired armchairs and stool, Krikorian employed a type of seam generally used in the construction of bags, here scaled down to create a looped and exaggerated effect along the stitched parts of the seats.

Krikorian's extensive knowledge in leather processing comes from his family, which has specialized in craftsmanship for several generations: in fact, in front of his small stand, there was the display of his mother's personal brand, Jasmin's Line.