Jeddah bazaar sets the mood for Ramadan in Saudi Arabia

Saudi residents browse through the collections of local entrepreneurs as they prepare for the holy month and Eid

The SummerDan bazaar is taking place at the Hilton hotel in Jeddah. Miriam Nihal / The National
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Crowds gathered at the SummerDan bazaar in Jeddah on Tuesday as they browsed through the summer and Ramadan collections of local entrepreneurs.

SummerDan, Jeddah's biggest Ramadan market, is taking place at the Hilton hotel over three days.

The hall where it is being held has been decorated with Ramadan-themed motifs featuring crescent moons and stars, as well as huge Arabic coffee cups.

One of the organisers told The National that this was the 10th year the bazaar was taking place.

“We bring the summer and Ramadan collections in one event,” said Mawada, who did not give her last name, as she described how the name of the bazaar came about.

More than 150 retailers are displaying their wares, including abayas, thobes, jewellery, home accessories and beach accessories, at the bazaar.

About 3,000 people are expected to visit each day, organisers said.

Amina, a shopper, said the atmosphere was great as it allowed visitors to come with “family and friends to enjoy music, food and shopping in a place where we all get to dress up and celebrate our beloved month”.

From home decor to trays and cups, shoppers gathered to check out the latest trends and Ramadan essentials.

Malak, a local designer, said a lot of her designs were handmade and inspired by the “colours of Ramadan”.

“I design and make the 'Jewellery for Malak' accessories,” she said. “[During] Ramadan, we have a variety, including long and short chains to accessorise with Ramadan outfits.”

The bazaar also hosted food and coffee stalls, giving local entrepreneurs a chance to showcase their culinary treats.

Arabic coffee, dates, traditional Yemeni dessert Masoub, meat dumplings and mantu, a thin dough filled with beef or lamb mixed in onions and spices, were a hit with locals attending the bazaar.

“It is always a wonderful time to visit this SummerDan Hilton Bazaar as it has very unique and beautiful stalls,” Jeddah resident Sana Fakih told The National.

“This year, I quite enjoyed the face-painting stall, which I feel added to the Ramadan vibes.”

Young women lined up to have their faces painted as a female DJ played a mix of international and regional songs.

Local artist Rowan came up with face-paint designs that had glitter and shimmering shades.

Rasha Abdul said she loved how the bazaar managed to get her in the Ramadan spirit.

“I always get home decor and Ramadan gifts for my relatives,” she said.

Several public markets are expected to open around the country before Ramadan, which will start on March 23.

“We wait all year for these bazaars as it is the perfect opportunity to get ready for Ramadan and Eid. I am always looking for good offers and prices at this time,” said Jeddah resident Nawal Alharbi.

“From ma'moul [date biscuit] boxes to diamonds, it is the most exciting time for us.”

Saudi Arabia holds public Ramadan celebrations for first time since 2020

Saudi Arabia holds public Ramadan celebrations for first time since 2020
Updated: March 22, 2023, 5:13 AM