SPOTLIGHT Interview: BRIDE Show Middle East – Daphne Cota, Exhibition Director
Daphne Cota is Exhibition Director for BRIDE (and Beyond Beauty Arabia), the leading wedding event in the Middle East. It holds successful annual events in both Dubai and Abu Dhabi. She has worked on the BRIDE show Dubai since 2003, and its Abu Dhabi counterpart following its acquisition in 2006.
Daphne’s career has followed a fashion and beauty route since graduating with a degree in Economics and Law (LLB) from Bombay University. She furthered her studies with a degree in Fashion Design and Manufacturing from the Sophia College in Mumbai. This gave her the skills and the motivation to set up her own business – designing ethnic and fusion women’s wear for Indian retailers.
Daphne joined Informa Exhibitions in 2004, where she worked on the BRIDE show Dubai, first as a Project Manager and steadily climbing the ranks over, eight years. During this time, her role expanded to include work on the BRIDE show Abu Dhabi when it was acquired in 2006.
With a month or so to go until the first BRIDE show Middle East of 2013 takes place in Abu Dhabi on January 30th, the Bride Club ME team met with Daphne Cota to get the low down on the 2013 BRIDE show and what our lovely readers can expect from both the Dubai and Abu Dhabi exhibitions next year.
- How long have you been working for the Bride Show? I have been working with Informa Exhibitions and the BRIDE show Middle East for eight fantastic years now.
- What is your favourite part of working on the Bride Show? The fashion elements of the show are my favourite, especially meeting the designers and hosting the fashion shows. My experience and love for fashion has helped me to develop my skills and has made a tangible difference to the fashion and beauty segments of the exhibitions in particular.
- What can brideclubme.com readers and fans expect to see/experience at next year’s Bride Show? Bride Club ME readers can expect to see the biggest Bridal event with luxury brands, fashion shows hosted by regional and international designers and everything one needs to organise a wedding – all under one roof. Next year we have a few new additions to the BRIDE shows including the dedicated Jewellery zone, as well as the new launch running alongside BRIDE Abu Dhabi – Beyond Beauty Arabia.
- Name some 2013 wedding trends our readers can look forward to, according to your knowledge? It is going to be a year of simplicity and elegance – lace and taffeta with straight silhouettes for the dresses, coloured diamonds for jewellery and even the wedding themes will be less dramatic with white and pastels as the main colours.
- According to your research, on average, how many weddings took place in 2012, throughout the UAE? In 2011, there were a total of 15,104 weddings that took place in the UAE. We are still waiting for the UAE National Bureau of Statistics to release the 2012 statistics however based on the previous two years, I’d say the average number will be similar – with over 15,000 weddings taking place by the end of 2012.
- What is the average spend on a wedding in the UAE, both with the Local and expat community? Any budget management tips? Our research shows that US$80,000 is the average spends on weddings within the UAE. This is primarily for Emiratis and Arab weddings, which are the tier target market of BRIDE events in the past. We will be working at getting similar stats for Expat market, now that more and more of expats prefer getting married in the UAE – instead of their home countries. In regards to budget management, I would suggest that Planning ahead and sorting out the ‘to do’ list on a priority basis is the key to budget management.
- What are your top three wedding planning tips for a Bride to-be living in the UAE?
1: Be organised
2: Get your friends and family to help you out if they are able
3: Try to relax at least a week before the wedding and enjoy the moment
- If our readers want to attend the Bride Show, what do they have to do? If couples getting married wish to attend our exhibition, all they have to do is log in and register on our website www.thebrideshow.com to get a complimentary invite.
- And lastly, brideclubme.com is one of your online media partners for the show; tell us why you decided to partner with brideclubme.com? Bride Club ME is a comprehensive online platform for both vendors and clients and we love the concept. We feel partnering will be beneficial for both parties.