souvenir from Saudi Arabia?

Old Feb 24, 12, 9:59 am
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souvenir from Saudi Arabia?

Mr. Kipper will be headed to Saudi Arabia for six weeks later this year for work.

On most of his trips, he brings back some sort of souvenir for me, or if I travel with him, I pick up something. Hawaii was jewelry, Guam was a book about the war dogs from the war dogs memorial, and Japan was a set of katana/samurai sword letter openers.

Is there anything special I should suggest that he bring back for me? He's said that if there's something special, I should tell him, rather than not give him any ideas.

My guess is that he'll be rather limited in where he can travel when he's not working, so I'm guessing any purchases will need to be made either at the airport or hotel.

Thanks!
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Old Feb 24, 12, 1:39 pm
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There is some nice silver work in/from the Western province. Delicious chocolates and dates everywhere. Strong but distinctive perfumes (Arabian Oud). Surprisingly great paintings/artwork on East and West coasts. Here in the East, some woven goods.

But overall Saudi is not a big souvenir kind of place. Where will he be going? Not much to be found in the airports other than dates/chocs, but if you tell us what region he'll be in I'm sure we can recommend the few specific souvenir type stores.
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Old Feb 24, 12, 1:57 pm
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Jeddah and Jubail I think. I'm not sure about Jeddah, as it might be somewhere else on the Red Sea.
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Old Feb 25, 12, 9:16 am
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Oud and gold... maybe even a ʿabāyah or a thobe?
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Old Feb 25, 12, 3:09 pm
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It's not an ideal time, but gold jewelry is my most treasured souvenir from Saudi Arabia! (Silver is also an option.)

Gayrab's suggestions are also good...you'll always have a Halloween costume.
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Old Feb 25, 12, 5:17 pm
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Bateel Dates are delicious....if you like dates !
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Old Feb 25, 12, 6:50 pm
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Originally Posted by chgoeditor View Post
It's not an ideal time, but gold jewelry is my most treasured souvenir from Saudi Arabia! (Silver is also an option.)

Gayrab's suggestions are also good...you'll always have a Halloween costume.
Jewelry could work. He's apparently now only going to Jubail.
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Old Feb 26, 12, 4:25 am
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Shame he's not going to Riyadh. The Marriott in Riyadh has the most awesomely kitsch gift shop with Saudi t-shirts, joke signs, passport covers, etc...
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Old Feb 26, 12, 9:31 am
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I think many hotels have similar: certainly the one I'm in now in Al Khobar does.
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Old Feb 26, 12, 10:06 am
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Similar yes, but no others I tried were remotely as good - and I've stayed at 5 different hotels in Riyadh, 6 in Jeddah and 3 in Khobar. Maybe more places now have a better range though.

The "baby on board" triangle signs with the camel in the back of a pick-up truck went down particularly well, as did the "no women allowed" and "no men allowed" fridge magnets, and the "my Kingdom is So Awesome" t-shirts (KSA, geddit?).
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Old Feb 26, 12, 11:53 am
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I have picked up some antique silver jewellery in the past, which was well received and, for unique pieces, fairly priced. In addition to the previous suggestions of dates and the "so bad they're good" souvenirs I have also purchased nice examples of both stone and wood misbaha (islamic prayer beads) which have no religious significance to me but which are relatively redolent of the destination and often show some nice craftsmanship.
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Old Feb 26, 12, 2:40 pm
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Originally Posted by FinalCallDXB View Post
I have also purchased nice examples of both stone and wood misbaha (islamic prayer beads) which have no religious significance to me but which are relatively redolent of the destination and often show some nice craftsmanship.
Oh, I still regret losing my Saudi prayer/worry beads!

As to the kitsch signs, he should look for one that shows the proper way to use a western toilet (picture of someone with their feet on the seat in a squat position with a big red bar through it).
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Old Feb 26, 12, 2:55 pm
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The suggestions for silver are good - the metalwork can be beautiful, with really unique patterns. I have a couple of bracelets that I love!

In the "hillarible" category, the plastic mosque alarm clocks are always delightful, especially if one sets the alarm just prior to gifting it.
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Old Feb 26, 12, 7:48 pm
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Originally Posted by tebfunk View Post
In the "hillarible" category, the plastic mosque alarm clocks are always delightful, especially if one sets the alarm just prior to gifting it.
There's an App for that ! Ideal for planning when to shop, eat, etc during the evening prayer windows.

The only things I've managed to accumulated so far are a couple of 'Riyadh' t-shirts and several pairs of (excellent quality) knock-off Ray-Bans from the souk
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Old Feb 27, 12, 7:43 am
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I'm leaning towards silver jewelry. I usually wear silver jewelry anyway, so it'll be something unique.

Thanks!
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