Germany’s iconic Oktoberfest is slated to be held in Dubai after it was called off for the second year running due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Mail reported.
Bavarian state premier Markus Soeder has stated that holding large events in Bavaria, including the annual celebrations, is “not feasible” after a meeting with the city’s mayor Dieter Reiter.
However, German media has reported all is not lost for drink fans as something similar to the 16-day festival is to be held in the United Arab Emirates (UAE).
Instead of being held for around 18 days, the breakaway festival in Dubai will continue for nearly 6 months.
The event has been organised by Charles Blume and restaurant entrepreneur Dirk Ippen and is set to be held in Dubai Marina with innkeepers and breweries from Bavaria set to be flown in, according to German publication Bild.
Celebrities already invited include Pamela Anderson, Arnold Schwarzenegger and Steven Seagal.
Blume announced on a Munich radio station that permission had been granted on the understanding that “drunk guests would be transported back to where they are staying in buses.”
Last year, the United Arab Emirates announced a change in its laws to allow drinking alcohol.
Organizers of Oktoberfest, at which attendees don traditional Bavarian clothing including dirndls for women and lederhosen for men, have confirmed the original event is not being relocated and the Dubai festival is separate.
“The Oktoberfest is a Munich original and takes place exclusively in Munich,” said a spokesman for the Department of Labor and Economic Affairs of the City of Munich, the organizers of the Munich Oktoberfest.
“The plans that have now become known are not being pursued by the organizers of the event in Dubai either on behalf of or with the consent of the City of Munich.”