Celebrities who gave their children Arabic names, including Lindsay Lohan and Alia Bhatt

Khai, Raha and Aaliyah are some of the most popular names born out of the region

Lindsay Lohan and DJ Khaled are two stars who chose Arabic names for their children. AP; Reuters
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Lindsay Lohan recently welcomed her first child with her Kuwaiti husband Bader Shammas – and it's no surprise they have chosen an Arabic name.

They have named their boy Luai, meaning "shield" or "protector". It is also sometimes written as Luay.

The Mean Girls actress isn’t the only celebrity who has taken inspiration from the region when naming their newborns – here are 12 others.

1. Gigi Hadid and Zayn Malik’s daughter Khai

The model revealed she and former One Direction singer Zayn Malik welcomed their first child in September 2020. They chose the name Khai, meaning "crowned" and "royalty". It honours her Palestinian heritage – her businessman father Mohamed Hadid was born in Palestine – and is a tribute to her paternal grandmother, Khairiah.

Khairiah is also the middle name of Gigi’s younger sister, model Bella Hadid.

2. Alia Bhatt and Ranbir Kapoor’s daughter Raha

The Bollywood stars married in April last year and welcomed their daughter a few months later in November, naming her Raha.

Taking to Instagram, the Darlings actress wrote: “The name Raha (chosen by her wise and wonderful Dadi) has so many beautiful meanings. Raha, in its purest form, means divine path, in Swahili she is joy, in Sanskrit, Raha is a clan, in Bangla, rest, comfort, relief, in Arabic peace, it also means happiness, freedom & bliss.”

3. Katherine Jenkins and Andrew Levitas’s daughter Aaliyah Reign

The Welsh opera singer and her American husband named their first child Aaliyah Reign, who was born in September 2015.

The name means "highborn", "exalted" or "sublime".

4. Saif Ali Khan’s sons Taimur, Jehangir, Ibrahim and daughter Sara

The Bollywood actor and producer shares a son Ibrahim and daughter Sara with his ex-wife Amrita Singh.

Sara, who was born in August 1995, has an array of meanings, including "pure", "happy" and "delight". Ibrahim is the Arabic version of Abraham.

He continued the tradition after welcoming two sons with his second wife, Spy Bahu actress Kareena Kapoor. The couple named the boys, Taimur, which means "iron", and Jehangir, which translates to "one who conquers the world".

5. Jennifer Gates and Nayel Nassar’s daughter Leila

The daughter of Microsoft founder Bill Gates and American-Egyptian showjumper Nayel Nassar waited four months to share their daughter’s name with the world.

Leila is popular in Arabic-speaking countries in part because of the epic Arabic poem Layla and Majnun, which is often described as the Romeo and Juliet of the Arab world.

6. Emraan Hashmi and Parveen Shahani’s son Ayaan

Once Upon a Time in Mumbaai actor Emraan Hashmi and his wife Parveen welcomed their son in February 2010 and named him Ayaan.

It means "gift of God" in Arabic. Hashmi, who was raised by a Muslim father and Christian mother, later shared that his son had been diagnosed with cancer in January 2014 but was declared cancer-free in January 2019.

7. Lara Dutta and Mahesh Bhupathi’s daughter Saira

The former Miss Universe Lara Dutta, her ex-tennis player husband and their daughter were recently spotted enjoying Wimbledon.

The couple, who welcomed Saira in 2012, chose an Arabic name meaning "traveller" or "wanderer" and is a variant of the name Sarah.

8. DJ Khaled and Nicole Tuck’s sons Asahd and Aalam

The American musician and producer – whose real name is Khaled Mohammed Khaled – was born in New Orleans to Palestinian parents and credits them with influencing his love of music by playing Arabic music in the home.

Khaled and his wife have two sons named Asahd, meaning "lion", and Aalam, which means "world" or "universe".

The Grammy winner made headlines in October 2016 for live-streaming Asahd’s birth on Snapchat.

9. Shah Rukh Khan and Gauri Khan’s sons Aryan and AbRam and daughter Suhana

One of Bollywood’s biggest stars and his wife chose three Arabic names for their children.

Aryan means "warrior", while AbRam, who was born via surrogate, means "need".

The couple chose a name meaning "name of a star" for their daughter Suhana, who was born in 2000.

10. Amrita Arora and Shakeel Ladak’s sons Rayaan and Azaan

The actress and her businessman husband have two sons.

When Arora, who is Punjabi, and Ladek, who is Muslim, wed in 2009, they opted for an inter-faith celebration, which included a Christian wedding as well as a Mehendi and Muslim Nikah ceremony.

When it came to their sons, they chose Arabic names, with Azaan meaning "call to prayer" and Rayaan meaning "door of heaven" or "plentiful".

11. Alicia Keys and Swizz Beatz’s sons Egypt Daoud and Genesis Ali

American DJ and producer Swizz Beatz (whose real name is Kasseem Daoud Dean) and multi-Grammy winner Alicia Keys have two sons together.

While Daoud is the Arabic version of David, meaning "beloved", the singer says she gave her eldest son the first name Egypt after she took a “powerful” trip to the country.

Youngest son Genesis’s middle name Ali means "high" and "exalted".

12. Sanjay and Maanayata Dutt’s twins Shahraan and Iqra

The Indian actor Sanjay Dutt and his wife Maanayata welcomed their twins Shahraan and Iqra in October 2010.

Shahraan means "moon" or "moonlight", but taken separately Shah means "royal" and Raan means "knight".

Meanwhile, Iqra means "read" or "recite" and is believed by Muslims to be the first word revealed to the Prophet Mohammed in the Quran.

Updated: August 04, 2023, 8:43 AM