September 3 2014

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The Middle East’s Newest Fashion Frontier


Doha, Qatar, is the latest hot spot of global luxury. The city’s extraordinary boom, fueled in large part by its winning World Cup 2022 bid, has already seen the arrival of outposts of Hermès, Stella McCartney, Balenciaga, and Alexander McQueen. The latest addition to its luxury Pearl Island complex is a new store catering to the Middle East’s expensive tastes: Toujouri, named for the Arabic word for “treasure chest.”

Lama El-Moatassem opened Toujouri, designed by architect Peter Marino, on Saturday night. A Central Saint Martins grad and a veteran of Chloé and Matthew Williamson, the Palestine-born, London-raised designer favors intricate embroidery and beading on her jewel-toned “cresses”—half caftan, half dresses. “The Middle Eastern woman has a strong sense of demi-couture—embroidery, beading, and handwork mean a lot to them,” she says. “There is a huge demand for this kind of dressing in the Middle East and I am here to answer that demand.”

Her answer will soon go global: El-Moatassem is designing a strictly limited-edition collection with a vintage twist for the cult site,, coming soon.

Toujouri is now open at the Pearl Island, Parcel 1, Shop No14, Doha, Qatar.

Photo: Courtesy of Toujouri



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