Dubai 80s

Dubai 80s event explores the city’s past

A unique pop-up Dubai 80s event organised as part of the Dubai Shopping Festival (DSF) invites people to experience a nostalgic recreation of Dubai in the 1980s.

A new addition to the DSF organised by the Dubai Festival and Retail Organisation (DFRE), the 10-day event held at Last Exit Al Khawaneej takes visitors into a visual representation of Dubai in the 1980s and early 1990s. The event is one of a number of attractions and experiences featured in the #DubaiDestinations winter campaign.

The ‘Dubai 80s’ event aims to capture that moment in time when Dubai was on the cusp of dramatic change. As well as being a defining era on a global scale, the 80s was a decade that raised the profile of Dubai and the UAE on the international map. It was a time when the country embarked on a journey of transformation that transformed it into a leading global city.

Dubai 80s will explore a defining era of the city’s past: vintage photo galleries showing snapshots of Dubai before it became a global metropolis, photo booths, shows, anime and live performances, old school arcade machines, classic cars – all offering a dip into the past.

On arrival at the pop-up event, visitors will take a giant leap back in time by walking through the main entrance with a vintage Emirati house, which gives them the feeling of entering an 80s neighbourhood, reeking of spices and old music in the air.

Visitors will come face to face with memorabilia including 90s mobile phones, Swatch watches, Gameboys, old encyclopaedias and floppy disks, vintage TVs and retro cassette players – gadgets that defined a generation. Visitors can browse a vintage photo gallery featuring snapshots taken by local artists, depicting Dubai in all its former glory before it was transformed into the futuristic city of today.

Visitors can also trace their childhood memories and explore the comic books and cartoons that defined a generation before Marvel and DC Comics moved to the big screen. Revisiting a time when Dubai had its own fan base of superheroes, visitors will be able to reacquaint themselves with their favourite comic book characters and watch screenings of anime and animated clips from popular films.

They will also have the chance to explore the arcade, built with a nostalgic ’90s theme and featuring vintage arcade games such as Tetris, Mario Kart, Space Invaders and many others. An exhibition of classic cars will bring back memories of cars of yesteryear. Visitors will also have the opportunity to win many daily prizes.

The Dubai 80s exhibition will be held at Last Exit Al Khawaneej from December 23 to January 8 from 4pm to 11pm, and admission is free for everyone.

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