Dubai, desert and dazzling dresses

Are you even celebrating New Year’s Eve if you don’t wear a beautiful dress that sparkles under the stars? I suppose it depends on how you like to bring in the New Year; but this year I wanted to sip on champagne and dance the night away in the luxurious city of Dubai, all frocked up in glittery gown.

Arriving from the atelier of fashion house Teuta Matoshi Duriqi in 'New Year', a blushing pink ball gown embroidered with crystals cut from the seams of my fashion dreams. This gown, shaped bodice with a sheer overlay and a broach belt around the waist – such intricate detail brought to life an enchanted night at Atlantis The Palm.

We dined a grand feast under a balmy sky and at midnight, we toasted to a wonderful year before and ahead of us, as the fireworks danced across the sky.

A five-night stay at Rixos Premium Dubai in this opulent city was never going to be long enough, but it was time to depart and see the sights from the sand. Into the desert we trekked, for a safari. Now was the time to don a scarf to hide from the desert sun during the day.   

The rich burnt orange colour of the sweeping sand dunes contrasted against the sky’s blue and gave me a few ideas for future Esther collections! Perhaps a series of long length dresses in a desert palette.

 Wearing lighter fabrics such as cotton and linen in loose fits was definitely a good choice in the desert, as well as when walking through Dubai. We travelled during the cooler months of December and January, where the weather hovered around 28 degrees most days and the crowds were a little quieter.

Next we travelled to Muscat, the capital of Oman on the Arabian Peninsula. The seafood, scenery and fashion were all outstanding. Staying at The Chedi Muscatwe spent much of our time styling dresses from Esther’s new collection - launching soon.

Making the most of the desert landscape, we also spent a few starry nights glamping at Magic Camps Oman – south of Muscat near Ghalat. It was also an ideal location to shoot a few more snaps of Esther’s dresses!

While we weren’t exactly roughing it – the tents were completed with divan beds, linen sheets, and lanterns to light the way – it was so nice to get away from the hustle of the city and be surrounded by nothing but sand dunes, camels and beautiful people for a few days at least before it was time to return to the sands of Sydney.

A hot tip when travelling to the United Arab Emirates: pack light, full-length dresses and pants, scarves to protect you from the sun and sweeping sand, sunscreen and lots of it, and an open mind for experiencing new culture.