Elie Saab: A symbol of Lebanese hope and resilience

Saab, born in Damour, experienced displacement, wars, and crises. He traveled across the world but remained strongly anchored in Lebanon.
by Annahar Staff

2 May 2019 | 13:17

Source: by Annahar

  • by Annahar Staff
  • Source: Annahar
  • Last update: 2 May 2019 | 13:17


BEIRUT: “We are all workers, giving up is not an option," is but one of the ideologies of Elie Saab. 

Saab, the famed Lebanese couturier, started designing his future when he was nine years old. At the age of twelve, he began selling his own designs to his neighbors, armed with skill and a broad vision. 

Saab, born in Damour, experienced displacement, wars, and crises. He traveled across the world but remained strongly anchored in Lebanon.

He is best described as an anxious human being like many of his fellow citizens, a young man who started from scratch and was able to succeed and attain great heights on the global scale. 

Deep down, Saab remained true to himself, always on the hunt for self-innovation and managing tougher challenges. Recently, he has been working to expand his foothold in his home country by engaging with the national industry and encouraging the national fashion and textile industry. 

In an act of faith, Saab fights uncertainty with confidence and is always on the lookout for ideas and approaches that can make a difference in Lebanon.

It is his responsibility he believes to motivate those around him while acknowledging the difficult socio-economic conditions that have been exacerbated by inadequate official policies.

The couturier, who owns a series of businesses in Lebanon and abroad, is not immune to fluctuating global economy and the internal Lebanese dynamics that cast a shadow on the companies’ operation and plans. He speaks often about the heavy and crushing burden borne by the Lebanese citizens who suffer from the lack of adequate services such as water, electricity, etc. and who bear the brunt of the paralysis of institutions and political bickering.

Based on this very realistic vision, Saab is working to strengthen his business in Lebanon. He is planning a restructuring of his company to include new departments – which would create hundreds of job opportunities in support of the Lebanese economy. It is a promising and strategic project that would boost the Lebanese economy and shed light on an individual’s ability to stir the stagnant waters and introduce positive changes.

Today, he partners with Annahar to launch a special issue under the title “the thread of resilience” because he believes that it is our duty to fight despair, consolidate the Lebanese workforce, sustain trades and professions and spread economic positivity.

Through Annahar's pages, Saab hopes to shed light on the stories of Lebanese workers, artisans, and craftsmen across the country. It is a tribute to the people who wake up every morning filled with satisfaction, positive energy and a determination to keep moving forward in spite of the many hardships. It is a tribute to the pastry chef, the plumber, the fisherman, the farmer, the physician, the teacher, the engineer, the lawyer, the businessman, the tailor, the carpenter, the artist…

The idea, according to Saab, is to convey a simple message to every Lebanese worker: "We are all in service of our home country."

Saab is confident that this thread will never be broken because “it is woven by young men and women who are driven by determination, pride, and passion for a better future.”

In the end, “rulers go and people stay," he says.

In an interview with Nayla Tueni, editor-in-chief of Annahar, Saab talks about the Lebanese resilience and conveys encouraging messages to boost the economic cycle on the basis of individual efforts.

The threads of the Lebanese plight have become interwoven in the fabric of resilience and hope nurtured by the Lebanese people who have always been able to overcome difficulties.

Being a Lebanese citizen entails a sense of awareness of your belonging to a country exhausted by crises, yet success is not a stroke of luck. 

The road to success is tough and requires a clear vision of the path and goals, coupled with a good reputation. “Success is a daily endeavor and calculated steps," Saab says. 

Elie Saab’s talent is driven by his own vision and self-motivation nurtured by daily challenges, noting that he's "an ambitious young Lebanese man"

Adding to his global achievements in the fields of fashion, ready-to-wear clothing, and perfumes, Saab has helped create exquisite designer towers inspired by his aesthetic lines and brand. He was recognized for his success stories and won international awards. Recently, he was presented with the first “Dubai Star” in Emaar’s walk of fame in recognition of his role and because “he is the pride of the Arab world.”

There is no doubt that the Lebanese designer has become a Lebanese model for ambitious people who aim high.

He is a shining example who conveys an inspirational patriotic message woven with threads of resilience and hope.

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