Doha Jewellery & Watches Exhibition – the origin of mutual love

Beautiful and royal Doha is located on the Persian Gulf coast. If there is a sea in the city, I’m already in love with it. But Doha is not just beautiful – it is saturated with the spirit of royalty and prosperity.

Qatar’s population is less than 1,000,000 people. Owing to the profits from oil and gas trading Qatar takes one of the world’s leading positions on income per capita.

Having visited almost every event, I can say that Doha Jewellery & Watches Exhibition (DJWE) is the most prestigious jewellery exhibition in the Arab world. Here designers tend to bring pieces which they have never showcased before. Typically, these are jewels with rare and important gemstones and one-of-a-kind jewellery. Jewellers love DJWE and this feeling is mutual – having brought the best, as a rule, they are generously rewarded with good sales.

Doha Jewellery & Watches Exhibition has been annually held in Qatar since 2004. This year it ran from 20th to 25th February – six days from 12 p.m. till 10 p.m. Around 40 companies took part at this exhibition. They were presenting about 500 brands, among which I can name Graff, Chaumet, Chopard, Faberge, Cartier, Messika, David Morris, Van Cleef & Arples, Bulgari, Christian Dior, David Webb, Charles Oudin, Boghossian, Adler, Chatila, Moussaieff, V.A.K Fine Jewels. So, let’s have a detailed look at it.

How a jewellery company can become a DJWE participant?

If a jewellery company wants to participate in DJWE, it has to cooperate with one of Qatari Luxury Group companies. You can become a participant only under the patronage of a local company. This year they were represented by:

  • Al Fardan Jewellery Company;
  • Ali Bin Ali group;
  • Amiri Gems;
  • Fifty One East;
  • Al Muftah Jewellery;
  • Al Majed Jewellery;
  • Blue Salon;
  • Darwish Jewellery

For instance, Dior, Faberge, Busatti Milano и Jahan Geneve participated under the patronage of Al Fardan;

Messika, David Morris, Stenzhorn took part in exhibition under the aegis of Ali Bin Ali;

Hedera, Adler, Chatila, Moussaieff and many watch brands were represented by Amiri Gems; Rolex, CHANEL, Boucheron, Andre Marcha, Azza Fahmy, Bremont, Christian Bernard, Deaken & Francis, Falamank by Tarfa Itani, Pasquale Bruni, Yvan Tufenkjian and Zeades were patronized by Fifty One East.

It should be mentioned that patrons really support jewellery brands, which participate under their aegis. I was lucky to make acquaintance with Darwish Jewellery and I noticed that Mr Abdalla Darwish and Mrs Abir Darwish took the whole family to get to know V.A.K Fine Jewels and bought some of their jewels. Sometime has already passed since my return from Doha, and I want to thank Mr Abdalla Darwish and Mrs Abir Darwish for their support, the time we spent together and for their affection for jewellery!!!

Speaking of support…There was a booth of young Qatari designers at DJWE, who had a chance to participate free of charge owing to initiative and financial support of Mr Bader Abdullah Al-Darwish – a CEO of Darwish Holding, which owns Fifty One East.

Among young Qatari designers I would like to highlight Fajr Al Attiya (Trifoglio), Ghada Al Bouanain (Ghada Al Bouanian), Noor Al Fardan (Noudar), Nouf Al Meer (Nouf Jewellery), Sarah Al Hammadi (Sarah’s & Co) and, of course, my friend Nada Al Sulaiti (Hairaat) – you can watch a video of her marvelous Sakura below.

I have already mentioned that this exhibition is highly important for jewellery brands in terms of market sales. All questioned jewelers told me that it is one of the best places for sales in Arab countries! Moreover, any exhibition gives a great opportunity to study what other brands can offer to the customers, to realize market expectations, to catch its trends, to get to know your potential clients and to make some useful contacts. It’s a nice possibility for new companies to introduce themselves and enter the Arab market. I can’t say that you’ll make yourself at home at once. Probably, it will take you around three years until you are recognized and appreciated. Qatar loves reputable and well-known brands!

Furthermore, I noticed queues! It was absolutely packed near JAHAN Geneve, who are masters of sophisticated design with large diamonds and other gemstones. They are totally beloved in Qatar. I observed the same picture in Saudi Arabia. 

Tatyana Pfaifer wearing JAHAN Geneve jewellery with emeralds and diamonds
 Arab jewellery market is wedding-oriented, because wedding is a mini Cannes Film Festival. Everybody wears the best new jewels and gowns for the occasion. The key word here is new! That’s how the jewellery is sold for millions.

I call Charles Oudin as “favorite watches in the Middle East”. Wherever I see them, their watches are always queued for. Claire and Carole are two wonderful sisters, who travel around exhibitions and sell their creations successfully. They are so busy that my question “how do you manage to do it” remained unanswered.

Charles Oudin is one of the oldest Paris watch brands. The company was set up in 1797 and became a favorite brand of the French empress Josephine and Alfonso XI, the king of Spain. Charles Oudin boutique is located on Place Vend?me in Paris.

Emir Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani was also spotted at the exhibition. He walked around with his suite and, of course, every jeweler desired to grab his attention. He smiled to me but never stopped at the booth. As regards to Doha citizen in general, they are friendly, obviously love jewellery and diamonds, know their worth and recognize me, that is certainly good news))

Finally, I’d like to say that exhibitions in Bahrain and Qatar are probably the most significant events in terms of sales within the Arab space.

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Tatyana Pfaifer

The founder of Jewellery Masterpiece