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Meet the Lebanese Powerhouse Behind the 2022 Ball of Arabia’s Magical Decor—Ziad Raphael Nassar


It’s almost time! Tonight, the third edition of the Ball of Arabia takes place at Dubai’s Jumeirah Mina A’Salam, and will, no doubt, be a night to remember. Looking back to the ’80s for inspiration this time, the annual celebration will have guests attending in their glitziest looks, and the decor will match the theme to a tee, thanks to luxury event designer, author, and entrepreneur Ziad Raphael Nassar. The Lebanese powerhouse is the man behind some of the most beautiful weddings in the world, and this year, he’s sprinkling some of his magic onto the biggest night of the season.

Photo: Courtesy Ziad Raphael Nassar

“I feel excited and am impatiently waiting for the invitees to experience this year’s ball,” Nassar shared with Vogue Arabia just hours before go-time. While we all count down minutes to the opening of the Ball of Arabia, scroll to dive in to our recent chat with Nassar about all things decor, from festive hacks, to what he has planned for tonight.

This year’s theme is all the glitz and glam of the ’80s era. How are you planning to reflect the vibe in the interiors of the Ball of Arabia?

The look and feel of the ’80s is reflected through the light, and you will be surprised by the impact that light can bring to design, giving it life, and hence, a purpose of existence through shine and shimmery features. Furthermore, the ’80’ were all about experimenting! Therefore the design that we opted for is all about the experience! An experience in the itinerary, an experience in the visuals, an experience in the overall mood, where all your sense will be triggered.

What inspired your approach while ideating for the ball?

My inspiration came from the beautiful embroidered dresses that women used to wear in the Arab region back in the day. The fabrics and textures were both a big inspiration in the design.

Can you describe this year’s Ball of Arabia decor in three words?

Sparkle, monochrome, glamour… and daring. That’s four words!

What’s one interior/decor element you absolutely can’t get enough of, and why?

The color scheme.

What, according to you, is the most overused decor hack that you wish people would stop using?

In today’s world, sustainability is one of the most important pillars that any designer should be adopting. A white dress is always a white dress, but it depends on where, when, and how you’re using it… It’s all about the approach.

Lastly, what’s one piece of festive decor advice you’d like to share with people who love your work?

Décor is a matter of taste! So it’s not about designing small elements, it’s about designing an integrated concept. That’s why while designing, it’s important to focus on the ambiance that the design creates.

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