Prominent Women in Islam Series – Maryam (Peace Be Upon Her)

Early life

Then We sent to her Our Angel [i.e., Gabriel], and he represented himself to her as a well-proportioned man.  She said, ‘Indeed, I seek refuge in the Most Merciful from you, [so leave me], if you should be fearing of God.’  He said, ‘I am only the messenger of your Lord to give you [news of] a pure boy [i.e., son].’  She said, ‘How can I have a boy while no man has touched me and I have not been unchaste?’  He said, “Thus [it will be]; your Lord says, ‘It is easy for Me, and We will make him a sign to the people and a mercy from Us.  And it is a matter [already] decreed.’”  So she conceived him, and she withdrew with him to a remote place.” (Quran 19:16–22)

Maryam RA, was the mother of Prophet Isa AS, who never married in her lifetime. Hence, she was astonished when angel Jibrael informed her that she would bear a son.

[Jesus] said, ‘Indeed, I am the servant of God.  He has given me the Scripture and made me a prophet.  And He has made me blessed wherever I am and has enjoined upon me prayer and zakah as long as I remain alive. And [made me] dutiful to my mother, and he has not made me a wretched tyrant. And peace is on me the day I was born and the day I will die and the day I am raised alive.’” (Quran 19:26-33)

Prophet Isa was a miracle child who spoke words when he was just a baby, defending his mother from any accusations of immoral behavior.


And (remember) when the angels said: “O Maryam (Mary)! Verily, Allah has chosen you, purified you (from polytheism and disbelief), and chosen you above the women of the ‘Alamin (mankind and jinn) (of her lifetime).” Quran (Surah Aal-e-Imran, Verse 42)

Maryam RA, the daughter of Imran RA and Hannah, was extremely pious and one of the greatest women in Islam. Maryam’s mother was quite old when she conceived her, and prayed to Allah that if he gave her an offspring, she would dedicate her child to His worship and in taking care of the holy Masjid Al-Aqsa in Jerusalem.

Indeed, Maryam RA lived up to her mother’s promise who devoted herself to the worship of Allah.


Rising Fashion Talents

A glimpse at the work of four budding designers.

  1. Kholoud Ameen

Kholoud Ameen majored in sociology, but deep down knew she was born to be a designer. After becoming a wife and mother, she saw a part of herself in the fashion magazines scattered in her bedroom. Ameen then enrolled into a fashion design program and after graduation, she launched her brand Meraki and her first collection Natura for Spring-Summer 2017, inspired by nature where each piece had a story of its own. Her second collection Orphic Spring-Summer 2017, was influenced by the elegance of a swan. Ameen is planning on releasing her third collection soon.

Instagram: meraki.ka

  1. Manal Khaled

Manal Khaled started her journey by designing T-shirts and abayas, which lead to her first ready-to-wear collection in 2015. Her style is chic and casual couture which varies from jumpsuits and cocktail dresses to eveningwear. Khaled’s theme is oriental handmade pieces with a modern twist. Her biggest challenge was proving herself among pioneers in the local fashion industry and finding the right people who could translate her vision. Her biggest inspiration is nature, which she calls man’s best teacher.

Instagram: manalkhaledofficial

  1. Malikah Al Imam

Malikah Al Imam, an architecture student at Dar Al-Hekma, had an interest in collecting jewelry and redesigning them ever since childhood. Over the years her passion grew as she started collecting unique material from countries she visited, and used them to create expressive art pieces. In 2016, she opened her online store Gypsy Accessories, an extension of her personality as her style is bohemian and urban. Her goal is to give each piece its own adventurous spirit and unique design. Her biggest challenge is managing time between studying and boutique work, but with her supportive family she is able to provide her customers with quality, handmade pieces.



  1. Bayan Bamehriz

Bayan Bamehriz, narrating the birth of her brand Khurafa Studio, says, ‘’One night, I grabbed my old denim jacket and painted it over with random colors.” An English literature major, her style is based on humor, bold colors and vibrant energy. Each jacket features a unique Arabic saying that reflects the Saudi youth culture. She launched her collection of 12 denim jackets in February 2017, featuring unique pieces that are either sprayed or hand painted, and conveying the message that one must always dream big.

Instagram: khurafastudio



The New Film Club on the Block

12FY offers something film lovers are always looking for.

12 Films a Year, an indie film club in Jeddah, is the brain child of three filmmakers, Bentley Brown, Dalyah Bakheet and Abdulrahman Khawj.

With a shared love for cinema, the trio belongs to a recent network of film lovers, who came together for a cinematic cause. “The vision was clear since day one. We want people to appreciate cinema,” Bakheet said.

Even before the film club, they held screenings in their living room, office space, apartments, and invited whoever was interested. “Gradually, the idea of hosting film screenings followed by discussions came into being,” Khawj shared.unnamed-2

Bakheet mentioned location as the biggest challenge they face while trying to pull off such an event. “The idea that public gathering of mixed gender was not accepted for cultural reasons kept us cautious,” Brown further added.

“Then Dr. Nadia AlShaikh came along, our initial sponsor, who provided us with the premise, she has also been a huge supporter of our initiative,” Bakheet stated. Since then, the trio have gained confidence and are learning how to overcome obstacles everyday. They look for a nice space, where size doesn’t really matter, as long as it is screening friendly.unnamed-1

An underground club, with a low-key vibe, 12FY does not believe in advertising their events so much, wanting people to be naturally drawn and not by force. “We only post once or twice on our Instagram.”

Bentley shed light upon the selection of films and explained how “Lunchbox” by Ritesh Batra was actually not an unusual choice. “This was fairly usual for us as we rotate geography every month. That’s one of our goals, to provide a diverse range of cinematic content.”

12FY is inclined towards independent, one or two time feature filmmakers. The selection criterion is a film people would not easily see at home. Hence, they go over a lot of choices, selecting mainstream but interesting films, which can be a tricky combination.unnamed-3

Something important to note for film lovers is that 12FY screens fairly recent films, hoping to give people a venue to see the film as it comes, while they are still excited about it. “Our choice of films are more art house or film festival type in nature, so we offer something even for people who visit cinemas abroad frequently,” Khawj said.

Discussions were free and flowing at 12FY event. The audience was diverse; some were filmmakers, others had nothing to do with filmmaking but loved movies. It was interesting to observe as people passionately talked; drawing cultural similarities; raising questions; showing reservations they had with the characters; praising the script; and all in all lauding wonders a good film can do.unnamed

“This might sound like we are bragging,” Brown laughed. “But we have people thank us afterwards saying, ‘I look forward to your screenings, so I have people to talk to intelligently about movies.’”

Upon discussing Saudi films and if they plan on screening locally produced films, they explained how there are not a lot of choices in terms of Saudi feature films. When asked about Barakah meets Barakah, the film that was critically acclaimed at film festivals and would be a great choice for upcoming screening, “We are ready to screen whenever the directors are ready to screen them here,” Brown said.

Reflecting on their simple vision and the core purpose of 12FY, “Where they don’t have a cinema to go see it, we are filling the void,” Brown said. “We are not corporate or anything. But hopefully we want to see cinemas here.”


Prominent Women in Islam Series – Asiya (Peace Be Upon Her)

The prophet (peace be upon him) described her as one of the four most pious women and one of the first to enter paradise.

Early life

Asiya RA, who was married to an Egyptian pharaoh, was chosen by Allah to be the mother of Prophet Moses AS. She spotted a basket floating in the River Nile and asked her maid to bring it to her. Inside the basket was a baby – Prophet Moses AS. At the time, the pharaoh was on a mission to execute all male babies as a fortune teller had predicted a man from the Children of Israel will overthrow him one day. Asiya RA begged the Pharaoh to let the baby live, and adopted him as a son.

Years later, he was bestowed with prophethood. Following Allah’s command, he invited the Pharaoh and the people to monotheism. Asiya embraced Islam – she was one of the few who believed Prophet Moses RA and did not let the pharaoh’s fear stop her from following her heart and believing in one Allah.


She was a pious woman, who truly believed in Allah and continued to worship him despite the pharaoh’s cruelty towards Muslims. She struggled to keep her religion a secret from her own husband. She was compassionate, and it deeply saddened her to see other believers suffering around her. Eventually, she turned away from worldly pleasures, her throne, freedom, and also gave away her status as queen.

Her last words…

“My Lord, build for me a home with thee in paradise, and deliver me from Pharaoh and his work, and deliver me from the unjust people.” The Quran 66:11 (Surah at-Tahrim)

Truly an inspiring woman whose love for her Lord and religion was so great that she gave up all her material wealth and status. She rejected the pharaoh and was firm about her belief. However, she was tortured and bore excruciating pain for disobeying her husband, and was punished for that till her death.



Fatima Al-Banawi, graduate of Effat University and the lead actress in the recent critically acclaimed film ‘’Barakah meets Barakah”, has started a campaign on Instagram with #DoYouWearIt. The campaign encourages people to wear their seat belts.

We spoke to her about her initiative and the driving force behind it.

Tell me a little about the campaign #DoYouWearIt?
#DoYouWearIt is a documentation of people wearing their seat belt; an invitation to a new healthy habit, and a collective call for immediate action: Just wear it.

The background story:
I was in Florence two months ago, and I was seated in the back seat and I wanted to remove my seat belt jacket so I unbuckled my seatbelt, and it immediately starting beeping. I was surprised because that never happens in cars while I’m in Jeddah. I also noticed, when I used some of the “on demand shared car services” in Jeddah that the drivers often covered the chairs with fabric that mistakenly covered the buckle for the belt. The drivers would often laugh when I asked them, “Well, thanks for the brand new seat cover but, how can I buckle my seatbelt now?!”do-you2

What inspired you to start this? Is it a solo or collaborative effort?
I rarely wore the seat belt, but in order to encourage myself to do so, I began sharing a boomerang or a photo on my Instagram Story of me wearing it. It was just a new habit and I wanted to invite people to join, but certainly no campaign was on my mind. Suddenly dozens of images were sent to my Instagram account with photos of people wearing their seatbelt. It felt great! A friend and yoga instructor, Hanan Faiz expressed her immediate interest and shared with me a series of presentations she had worked on for safe driving. We both embarked on this together and continued re-posting images of people wearing their seat belts.

Positive Potential Outcome of #DoYouWearIt:
Through #DoYouWearIt, I want those who don’t wear seatbelts, or who forget to, to just remember this collective virtual voice and wear it.

What’s your message for everyone?
You gotta be the example for change, and if no one sees it, take a photo of it and share it. When we make our campaigns participatory based and engaging, we can then normalize our messages, turn them into habits, and enhance our lifestyles.

That’s social media done right, fellas!
Will you wear it now?


More Than Just An AD: JCA Students Spark Interest

Students from Jeddah College of Advertising displayed their final year thesis at Rawasi Hotel Suites on 17th-18th May 2017. Established by University of Business and Technology, this year marked the college’s second batch.

Destination Jeddah team went to see the projects and speak to JCA students; and we were quite impressed. The campaigns on display incorporated the corporate social responsibility value and offered a call to action factor; they were well-thought out and students behind it genuinely wanted to make the society better.dr-abdullah-dahlan

The graduates present there discussed how advertising is still a growing field and how JCA made it possible for them to pursue their passion. People do not realize but this field has a lot of possibilities, if fully realized.

One student had designed a kind of university encyclopedia consisting of a website, social media advertising etc to help potential students and parents to ease their college hunting process. DJ team was surprised to hear that there are a lot more universities than we know

Another student designed a campaign highlighting an addiction to pharmaceutical drugs which remains a taboo. She offered solutions where hospitals have booths to check whether a person’s pill intake is normal or not, by filling out a simple form.

Two girls created a card game for children called ‘Sunnah’ where the players will quiz each other about Prophet Muhammad’s Sunnah and life.part-of-the-exhibition

JCA offers three majors that students can select from: Advertising Communication/ Advertising Management and Advertising Creative Design. The core objective is to provide students with hands-on training and not just theoretical study; to groom them as ready and fit for the professional advertising world.

JCA is the first and only accredited by the International Advertising Association (IAA).


25 #Ramadan2017 Futoor Deals You Don’t Want to Miss!

Ramadan is here and we all know what that means, Futoor Offers! Here are a few that we could find!

  1. FireGrill

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Price: FireGrills special iftar offer will satisfy your cravings for a refreshing Mexican-style meal. The offer is for SR 39 per person!
Location: Malik Rd., Al Zahra Dist.

  1.  Big Chefs

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Price: SR 145 per person. Iftar is free for kids below 5 years of age and SR 80 for ages 5 – 12.
Reservations open after 2 p.m.
Location: Al Khayat Center
Tel.: +966-12-6110166

  1. Bay La Sun

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Price: SR 145 per person.
Location: King Abdullah Economic City
Tel.: +966-12-5106400

  1. Rosewood Hotel

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Price: SR 320 per person. Up to 200 people at Habsburg and 120 at Soleil.
Location: Corniche Rd., Al Shatie Dist.
Tel: +966-12-2607111

  1. Wagamama

wagamama-firecrackerPrice: SR 95 per person.
Location: Hail St., Rawdah Dist.

  1. Fratelli La Bufala

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Price: SR 120 per person.
Location: Stars Avenue Mall, Zahra Dist.

  1. Kalila

c-eyr2ouwaa5y9lPrice: SR 120 per person.
Location: The Courtyard City, Khaldia Dist.
Tel: +966-12-6061723

  1. Margherita

optimized-margarita-pizza-6-jpeg-copyPrice: SR 130 per person.
Location: Prince Saud Al Faisal St., Khaldia Dist.
Tel: +966-12-6061100

  1. Semsom

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Price: SR 135 per person.
Location: The Courtyard City, Khaldia Dist.
Tel: +966-12-6068600

  1. Aseil

dfdfPrice: SR 135 per person.
Location: The Courtyard City, Khaldia Dist.
Tel: +966-12-6062349

  1. Ruby Tuesday

ruby-tuesdayBook Now and enjoy 31% discount on Ramadan Special Buffet at Ruby Tuesday Jeddah. Discount only valid on online and phone based reservations.
Price: SR 89 now (SR 129 before)
Location: Andalus Street Branch, Ameer Sultan Street Branch
+966-558496881 +966-558539411
Instagram: rubytuesdayjeddah

  1. Ghanouj Lebanese Cuisine

dfdfdfIftaar Buffet
Price: SR 155, SR 80 for kids under 12
Location: North Corniche
Tel: +966-12-2899836, +966-581017315
Instagram: ghanouj_leb

  1. The Sandwich Gallery

sandwichOffer includes: Set menu including a choice of any of their sandwiches
Price: SR 75
Group and Early Booking Will Get Special Rates
Location: U Shape Centre, Al Rawdah Street, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia
Tel: +966-544222234
Instagram: thesandwichgallery

  1. Movenpick

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Price: buffet suhour 139 riyals per person/ SR 199 Buffet Iftar Per Person
Location: Al-Madinah Al-Munawarah Rd, adjacent to Mohammed Al-Taweel St.

Tel: +966-12-6676655

  1. Oasis Lebanese Restaurant

oasisPrice: SR 125 per person, SR 80 for take out
Location: Abdul Maksoud Khoja Street
Tel: +966-12-2630857, +966-558270097
Instagram: oasislebaneserestaurant

  1. Turkuoise- Turkish Gourmet

turkuoisePrice: SR 75 per person
Location: Boulevard Building, Prince Saud Al Faisal St., Al-Rawda district
Tel: +966-12-6832128
Instagram: turkuoiseksa

  1. Swisshouse

ramadandfPrice: SR 69 per person
Location: Prince Sultan Street – Al Nahda neighborhood next to Samba Bank
Tel: +966-12-6221922
Instagram: swiss_house

  1. MODO

1 – buffet SR 100 riyals in the following branches (Modu Jeddah Square _ Modu Marina dreams _ Modu Corniche_ Modo Hotel Ibis Yanbu)
2 – Buffet at SR 70 riyals in our branch at Park Hyatt, KAEC
3 – Set Menu SR 60 riyals in the following branches (Red Sea Mall_ Tahlia_ Modu beach Modu La Sun King Abdullah Economic City

Location: Red Sea Mall- Moda La Sun King Abdullah Economic City KAEC_ Dana Mall)
Tel: +966-534660099
Instagram: modocafesa

  1. Caribbean Catch

caribbeanSet Menu
Price: SR 49
Location: Hira Street,As Shati، Ash Shati
Tel: +966-594641327
Instagram: ccatchrest

  1. Casper and Gambini’s

casperPrice: SR 180
Location: Tahlia, Ha’il Street 2221, Jeddah
Tel: +966-12-6637979
Instagram: casperandgambinisksa

  1. Crowne Plaza Hotel

37098058Iftaar Buffet
Price: SR 350
Location: Hussain Ba Salamah 2307, Jeddah
Tel: +966-12-661-1000
Instagram: cpjeddah

  1. Maison De Zaid

zaidSet Menu
Price: SR 220 – 280
 Asha Taghlib, AR Rawdah District, Behind Jarir, Jeddah
Instagram: maisondezaid

  1. Chopsticks

shobakSet Menu
Price: SR 99 for Adults , SR 49 for kids
Locations: 1- Latera Center (
Hamal Ibn Malik, Al-Zahra’a, Jeddah 23521), Prince Sultan Street
Al Hamra Branch, Falasteen Street
Tel: +966-12-6907575 (Latera Center), +966-12-2612345
Instagram: Chopsticksksa

  1. Break Time

untitled-1Open Buffet
Price: SR 129 ( Family section),  SR 109 (Men’s Section only available in Tahlia Street)
Kids under 5 eat for free and kids 6-12 years eat for 50% off
1- Yamama street from Prince Sultan Street, eastern entrance of Ghassan Pharaon Hospital.
2-Tahlia Street, Behind Centrepoint Solidaire
Tel: Prince Sultan location: 
+966-12-2893987 – : +966-597320692
+966-12-2631822 – : +966-555767242
Instagram: breaktimeksa

  1. Uptown 966

13708296_1856962041198928_4098097424327018711_oFatoor Set Menu and Suhoor Set Menu
Price: SR 159 per person, SR 85 for children there is a special menu
 7448 Al Andalus, Al-Hamra’a, Jeddah
Tel: +966-12-6672020
Instagram: uptown966