Timeframe: Planet Hollywood opened 20 years ago in Dubai

Bruce Willis, Sylvester Stallone, Patrick Swayze were among the celebrities who attended the launch of the Middle East's first venue of the movie-themed eatery

US actor Bruce Willis waves to the crowd gathered for the opening of the new Planet Hollywood restaurant in Dubai 26 May, as two Emiratis  stand-by. The star-owned restaurant made its debut in the Arab world with a rock-and-roll performance featuring US actor Bruce WIllis. / AFP PHOTO / RABIH MOGHRABI

It’s May 26, 1998, and some of the biggest names in showbusiness are in Dubai for the opening of Planet Hollywood.

The brand’s first restaurant in the Emirates opened seven years after the themed eatery launched in New York.

As you’d expect with the name, Hollywood was well represented at the opening, with Bruce Willis, centre, leading an impressive guest list that included Sylvester Stallone, Cindy Crawford and Patrick Swayze.

Modelled after the musically-themed Hard Rock Cafe, Planet Hollywood was backed by Stallone, Willis, Demi Moore and Arnold Schwarzenegger.

The restaurant was located at Wafi, and besides the obligatory falconry display, the opening also featured a musical performance by Willis.

The venue closed in 2012, the same year the Hard Rock Cafe opened at Festival City.

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