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Mario Testino Arrives in Dubai and Dines with Fashion’s Finest

Rami Al Ali, Mario Testino, Diala Makki, Khalid AlMheiri Photo: Instagram/@r_al_ali

Rami Al Ali, Mario Testino, Diala Makki, Khalid AlMheiri
Photo: Instagram/@r_al_ali

Inimitable fashion and portrait photographer Mario Testino OBE has landed in Dubai ahead of tonight’s opening of his highly anticipated exhibition “Heat.” A dinner was hosted in his honor last night by Khalid AlMheiri, Chairman of Ginza Group, at Jean-Georges restaurant in Dubai. AlMheiri is the visionary behind bringing Testino’s first photo exhibition to the Middle East.

The intimate dinner of 40 included the likes of couturier the son of the ruler of Sharjah, Sheikh Khalid Al Qassimi; Patrick Chalhoub and designer Ingie Chalhoub; couturier Rami Al Ali; Group General Manager of Easa Saleh Al Gurg Group, Abdulla Al Gurg; and fashion journalist Diala Makki.

Speaking to, Sheikh Al Qassimi said, “Mario is who we think of when we talk about fashion from the ’90s; he’s created the visual language of that decade that inspired everything that comes from it.” Sheikh Al Qassimi who is notably the designer behind Qasimi added, “That was when my interest in fashion peaked—and all the campaigns and editorials that we know are seen as iconic images in fashion today.”

Nestled in the restaurant’s lush outdoor setting, the VIP guests dined under the stars on toasted egg yoke and caviar, tuna tartar, slow-baked salmon, and a main of beef. Desert was warm chocolate cake with vanilla ice cream.


Jean-Georges restaurant, Dubai

Speaking to, Rami Al Ali commented that Testino was very relaxed and pleased to be in Dubai, and was quick to complement the weather and the stylish crowd. “I’m anticipating a beautiful exhibition tonight, of which the set-up [in d3] was built specifically around it.” Photographs from the Mario Testino Heat exhibition, that opens tomorrow to the public, have already been sold ahead of time to keen collectors of Testino’s world-renowned work.

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