Beyoncé’s Dubai concert was controversial, but her fashion mattered

Beyoncé stars in the grand unveiling of Dubai's newest luxury hotel, Atlantis The Royal (Kevin Mazur / Getty Images for Atlantis The Royal)

Beyoncé stars in the grand unveiling of Dubai’s newest luxury hotel, Atlantis The Royal (Kevin Mazur / Getty Images for Atlantis The Royal)

Beyoncé’s first performance in four years (with a reported $24 million). [£20 m] price) was always supposed to be epic – but the 60-minute performance at Atlantis The Royal’s opening party far exceeded expectations.

On Saturday (January 21), VIPs, influencers and journalists – including mogul Jay Z, Kendall Jenner, British Vogue editor Edward Enninful, Black Panther star Letitia Wright, actress Rebel Wilson and former One Direction singer Liam Payne – were invited to celebrate the grand unveiling of the seven-star facility. The eight-year-old mega resort features 17 celebrity-run restaurants, a shop selling original Picasso paintings, a 21-metre aquarium filled with 4,000 moon jellyfish, and a 360-degree view of the Arabian Gulf and Dubai skyline.

So, of course, no expense was spared in launching the self-proclaimed “world’s most luxurious experimental resort.”

Beyoncé’s arrival has not been without controversy. Dubai has strict same-sex relationship laws, and as her new album Renaissance is seen as a celebration of black dance and queer culture, many were nervous about her arrival in the country.

As the star-studded crowd sipped 4,000 bottles of Moët & Chandon Champagne at the 90-metre Skypool, connecting the six towers that make up the 795-room Tetris-like resort, the bay was lit up with fireworks that went off on the central stage.

Beyoncé at Atelier Zuhra (Kevin Mazur / Getty Images for Atlantis The Royal)

Beyoncé at Atelier Zuhra (Kevin Mazur / Getty Images for Atlantis The Royal)

Here, the 79-time Grammy-nominated singer appeared wearing a yellow gown encrusted with glittering acrylic shards from the waist down. The striking dress was the work of Atelier Zuhra, a Dubai-based label owned by Omani designer Mousa Al Awfi, and was finished with an otherworldly feather-studded marabou train that flapped around the superstar’s shoulders like wings. Styled by KJ Moody, Al Awfi told Vogue that she “started wearing this dress in November” and that “it took almost a month and a half to finish.”

Nicolas Jebran dresses Beyoncé (Kevin Mazur / Getty Images for Atlantis The Royal)

Nicolas Jebran dresses Beyoncé (Kevin Mazur / Getty Images for Atlantis The Royal)

After opening with a stunning performance of At Last Etty James, Beyoncé then performed seven songs, including Halo, XO, and Brown Skin Girl before changing into a corset red and gold bodysuit with flowing train, glamorous opera gloves and an ethereal crown by Nicolas Jebran – further showing her respect for regional creations. The Lebanese designer, who has also dressed Gigi Hadid, Jennifer Lopez and Cindy Crawford, told Vogue that the silhouette of the bell-shaped skirt was inspired by “royal attire” with a tribute to “Emirate women” and their love of “gold accessories and monochrome color “.

Beyoncé wears a Frolov dress at the opening of AtlantisThe Royal Dubai (Getty Images for Atlantis The Royal)

Beyoncé wears a Frolov dress at the opening of AtlantisThe Royal Dubai (Getty Images for Atlantis The Royal)

Not averse to making political statements about tailoring, Beyoncé imitated Ukrainian designer Ivan Frolov in a recent outfit change, donning a tight pink minidress, knee-high socks and fine gold-plated gloves from his eponymous brand. Created in Frolov’s Kiev workshop during the war and city-wide power outages, the gown proved that “no matter what, Ukrainian brands continue to showcase their resistance and culture to the world,” according to Frolov’s press release.

Atlantis The Royal Hyper Luxury Opening Party (Stuart C. Wilson / Getty Images for Atlantis The Royal)

Atlantis The Royal Hyper Luxury Opening Party (Stuart C. Wilson / Getty Images for Atlantis The Royal)

After the show, Beyoncé and her family (11-year-old Bue Ivy joined her on stage in Brown Skin Girl) relaxed in the hotel’s flagship Royal Mansion suite. It costs $142,500 ($117.75) per night and covers over 11,000 square feet, has four huge rooms (which can be expanded to 15 for an additional $130,000 [£108,000] night), cinema, safe and own infinity pool. With the cheapest room costing $1,800 (£1,490) a night, the other guests were equally pampered with complimentary gold-plated brushes, combs and razors, a “menu” of seven pillows and personal butlers.

On social media full of envy, many eagerly await the announcement of Beyoncé’s upcoming Renaissance tour, and if it’s any consolation, since the star hasn’t performed any songs from her 2022 album, there are many more iconic musical (and fashion) moments in Beyoncé’s verse to come. .

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