Lubna Habib interview

The Dubai One TV presenter discusses she-wolves, star signs and becoming Dubai’s answer to Chelsea Lately

Interview, Hot seat, The Knowledge

Did you always want to be on TV?
Yes – absolutely. I was always very animated as a kid, and always impersonating people. I leaned towards drama and acting. I’m a Gemini – we’re the communicators of the zodiac. My entire life, people have said to me, ‘You’re going to be on TV one day.’

How long has your show, City Wrap, been running for?
About three months now. This is my first TV thing. At first, being on camera was very intimidating, but I got used to it because I’d been working with Dubai One for a while. Now it just goes over my head.

What’s City Wrap all about?
Each week City Wrap recaps the best of Dubai’s social, cultural and entertainment events. We talk about everything from awards to exhibitions and music festivals. Each week we have a different line-up of guests to give us the lowdown on the top social spots, and Time Out’s editor Ross Brown is one of our favourite regulars.

What would be your dream job?
I love being a presenter, I absolutely adore it. I love being able to communicate messages. Being an Emirati and being a woman in this country, I’m glad I can do this in English because I can speak to a lot of people.

Do you see yourself doing more chat shows – becoming the Chelsea Lately of the Middle East?
Absolutely. I’d love to work on a talk show about social issues, something very Dubai-based. I want to be on the local channel so European expats, Indian expats, everybody can tune in and feel they’re being represented.

What has been the best moment on the show so far?
The best guest I’ve had was a contortionist, from a US circus called The Birdhouse Factory. Her performance on the show was both strange and amazing!

Have you always lived in Dubai?
I am Dubai born and bred.

What’s the biggest change you’ve seen in Dubai?
It’s funny, because all the people I went to school with are changing Dubai in their own way. For example, I have a friend who was the first international female photojournalist; I have a friend who was the first English-language TV presenter; I have friends in every circle who are creating an urban lifestyle, from politics, to social economics, to the arts. We were born at just the right time. Now it’s so easy to do things here: you can have an idea and somebody is going to find it interesting. It’s all about collaborations.

Who is your personal hero?
My mum. She’s a single parent: she raised me and my sister by herself. She put us through the best schools, universities and provided everything. I come from a family of chicks: my mum, my aunts, my sister, a wolf pack of she-wolves.

What can we expect from City Wrap in the near future?
Something really fabulous is going to happen, but I can’t say what. You’ll just have to tune in!

City Wrap is on Dubai One every Friday at 6.30pm

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