<em>Love is Blind, Habibi: </em>Actors Khaled Saquer and Elham Ali, seen here in 2021, will host the UAE edition of the popular Netflix dating series. Credit - Tim P. Whitby—Getty Images/Red Sea International Film Festival
Fans of Netflix’s hit reality dating show Love is Blind will soon have a new series to binge watch as the streaming giant has announced Love is Blind, Habibi, a UAE-based edition.
Dubbed as a social experiment, the show’s premise follows single men and women as they blind date in “pods” where they can only hear their date’s voice. The couples only meet if they build an authentic connection across 10 days worth of dates and decide to get engaged, “sight unseen.” The couples are then whisked away on a romantic holiday where they adjust to seeing their fiancé before them. They then have a limited number of weeks to get to know their partner in the flesh and decide if they are compatible enough to proceed with their wedding day.
The original U.S. version—which will air its sixth season on Valentine’s Day—first landed on our screens in February 2020 and was an instant success; a projected 30 million viewers watched the first season. Netflix capitalized on this popularity by releasing equivalent series in Brazil, Japan, and Sweden. And a U.K. edition is expected to air later this year.
The UAE spin-off will follow the show’s original premise with Arab singles looking to find love. Netflix’s MENA Instagram page teased a short trailer Wednesday, showing luxurious landscapes and hosts Elham Ali, Saudi actress and TV personality, and her husband Khaled Saqer.
The show joins a growing list of reality shows filmed in the UAE, such as Bravo's The Real Housewives of Dubai, Netflix’s Dubai Bling, and Discovery’s Say Yes to the Dress Arabia.
Here’s what we know about Love is Blind, Habibi so far.
What can viewers expect from Netflix’s Love is Blind, Habibi?
While few details are known about the show so far, The National reported that Netflix shared what viewers can expect from it. “On their journey, they will get the chance to meet other like-minded people who share their values and desire to build a family as well as a true partner who loves them for who they are and not what they look like.”
The streamer added, “They will have the opportunity to deepen connections, fall in love and even propose – all before actually seeing each other. But the question remains: 'Will they successfully tie the knot or will external factors and physical realities intervene?’”
The streaming platform has yet to announce a release date for the hotly-anticipated series.
What do we know about the Love is Blind, Habibi hosts?
Elham Ali is a 38-year-old Dhahran-born actress known for her roles in Arab productions such as Bashar Shorts (2022), Heart Crime (2023), and Saw filmmaker Darren Lynn Bousman’s horror film Cello (2023). She had her professional acting debut in 2015, starring in a short film Hope.
Ali is also renowned as a fashion figure, known for her glamorous red carpet looks. She married Khaled Saqer, also a Saudi-born actor, in 2019.
Saqer was born in 1990 and began his acting career in 2011, starring in local dramas before pivoting to short films. Ali and Saqer were both cast in Netflix’s dystopian series Bashar Shorts.
Write to Armani Syed at email@example.com.