Store manager Jun Concepcion organizes the merchandise at New Era, a new store selling the latest Star Wars memorabilia at the Al Wahda Mall in Abu Dhabi. Silvia Razgova / The National
Store manager Jun Concepcion organizes the merchandise at New Era, a new store selling the latest Star Wars memorabilia at the Al Wahda Mall in Abu Dhabi. Silvia Razgova / The National

New Era in Al Wahda Mall launches exclusive Darth Vader and Stormtrooper caps



New Era store has opened in Abu Dhabi’s Al Wahda Mall with an exclusive line of limited-edition Star Wars caps to commemorate May the Fourth – Star Wars Day.

The two collectable faux-leather Stormtrooper and Darth Vader designs come in four sizes, and there’s only one of each size available in the store (eight hats in all). The character motifs are also printed on the satin that lines each cap’s interior. The caps are priced at Dh225 each.

Only 144 caps have been made in each style worldwide, and the Abu Dhabi store is currently the only place you can find them in the Middle East, although there are plans to open a branch in Fujairah City Centre in September, ahead of the latest film’s release on December 18.

Leonard Erlank, COO of merchandise distributer Al Book Marine, is a self-confessed Star Wars geek and says there’s more memorabilia on the way: “I’m thrilled to announce that next month, we’re bringing out R2-D2 and C-3PO caps, too.”

The store also stocks a regular collection of black and white caps emblazoned with “Star Wars”, which cost Dh175 each.

John Mullin, 46, from the UK, was wearing his prized possession on Star Wars day – his well-worn, decade-old Star Wars T-shirt. The Abu Dhabi-based paramedic isn’t sure yet whether he’s willing to part with his hard-earned cash to buy one of the new caps, but he’s considering it.

“It’s great to be here in Abu Dhabi where the latest Star Wars movie was filmed, and I guess that’s why the caps are available here. I have an 8-year-old son who’s also a big Star Wars fan, but I think he’d be embarrassed to see me in a Stormtroopers cap! He’d much rather wear it himself. So if I buy one, it’ll very quickly become his.”

Mullin will be donning his Star Wars T-shirt to see The Force Awakens when it comes out – “and the cap too, if I decide to get one. So I’ll be kitted out in my Star Wars uniform”.

Australian tech writer Jack ‘Skywalker’ Stanley, 28, won’t be buying a cap, but he is hoping to get his hands on a Darth Vader costume instead to watch the latest film. “I think the New Era hats are a bit gimmicky, but to some it will be seen as a collectors item.”

Stanley is celebrating Star Wars Day by watching the first three movies with his pals. “It’s going to be a late night! I think one guy is coming dressed as Lord Vader. May the 4th be with you, UAE.”

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