Australians across the UAE gather to celebrate ‘the race that stops the nation’

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TV Personality, Hermoine Macura consults the judges before announcing the winner of the ‘Best Dressed’ award.

Australians living in Dubai including visitors and guests across the Emirates gathered last week for the 152nd running of the Emirates Melbourne Cup – a prestigious two mile horse racing event which has become a social, cultural and sporting icon for Australia.

Organized by the Australian Business Council in Dubai, ‘the race that stops a nation’, was held at the Qube bar and restaurant, at Meydan and was sponsored by Crown Relocations as well as prestigious fashion brands such as Bloomingdale’s and Dhamani.

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Bloomingdale’s General Manager, Matthew Mackenzie hands over a AED5,000 voucher to the ‘Best Dressed’ winner.

The morning at Meydan began at 7am; with the men receiving yellow rose bud buttonholes on entry – a long time tradition at the Melbourne Cup. Guests mingled and shared breakfast until all eyes were on the many screens to watch the live running of the Melbourne Cup down under at 8am – a seven-hour time difference to Melbourne, Australia. The crowds cheered as Green Moon won the Melbourne Cup followed by Fiorente in second and Jakkalberry in third place.

Fashion was clearly the passion of the day as women dressed in their finest and wore designer hats and other fabulous race wear including designs by Dubai-based fashion designer and milliner, Louise Harrison.

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A group of ladies get ready to strut their stuff for the ‘Best Hat’ contest.

The highlight of the day included the ‘Fashion on the Field’ event which saw thousands of dirhams worth of prizes go up for grabs for the best dressed man and woman.

Guests strutted their stuff on the makeshift catwalk with high hopes of winning several prizes including 2 vouchers worth AED5, 000 each from Bloomingdale’s and an AED5, 000 voucher from luxury jeweler Dhamani.

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Social Media & Membership Manager, Justine Cullen and Events Manager, Karen Butler pose for the cameras.

ABCD Events Manager, Karen Butler was delighted by the number of guests and also by the unique fashion on display. “The Melbourne Cup is a legendary event where the ladies dress to impress. This year’s prizes – including prestigious fashion vouchers from our sponsors Bloomingdale’s and luxury pearls from Dhamani jewelers attracted a high number of participants in the contests.”

Presenters and TV personalities, Laura King and Hermoine Macura – as well as the fashion judges, Kirsten Dorak, Fashion and Beauty Editor of Viva, Louise Harrison of Louise Harrison Couture and fashion aficionado, Simon Lock Founder of Australian Fashion Week, led the Australian tradition.

The Melbourne Cup is one of the richest flat races in the world with a total prize money pot worth millions. The event attracts riders, owners and horses from across the globe.

Hermoine Macura is the first Australian female English speaking TV News Anchor in the Middle East, and also one of the area’s most recognized faces. Prior to establishing Straight Street Media in 2012, Hermoine was one of the main Anchor’s on Dubai One TV’s Emirates News. Her first book, FACES OF THE MIDDLE EAST was published in 2010.

Faces of the Middle East by Hermoine Macura

FACES OF THE MIDDLE EAST is a book that aims to introduce the various ethnic and social groups who reside throughout the Middle East, proof that this part of the world is not, as many in the West mistakenly believe, a monolithic culture.

Neither a definitive story nor a political statement, FACES OF THE MIDDLE EAST, is the culmination of more then seven years of Photojournalism that documents the existence and rich diversity present in the region.

Order a copy online at

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