Rabih Arabi: Expat hospitality guru is making waves in Dubai’s food and beverage industry

“I am a Syrian, but Filipino by heart.” 

A Syrian national Rabih Arabi makes waves in one of the busiest cities globally, Dubai, by creating his taste of delicious cuisines from integrating various cultures of different countries. 

Rabih is the owner of Barako Art Café and Pinoy Word located in Al Rigga, Deira, Dubai. His intelligence gave him a margin to target many nationalities for his businesses. And now, he bent his move to participate with the Filipino community’s desires. 

This innovative man started working in Dubai as a chef before coming up with his business concept. As a resident and employee of Dubai for the last 24 years, he built a network and learned how the emirate’s business changed.

Living in Hospitality Industry

His background in the hospitality management realm is a mix of further studies and a time-based experience. He graduated from a university with a degree in hospitality. His theoretical ideas turned to reality when he started working after his education. 

For a long period of working in Dubai, his first work as a chef led him to be a man of courage, determination, and ambitions. His aspirations to grow and cultivate his visions never stopped, even he had good work at that moment. 

According to him, loving Dubai makes him happy and contented. He also considered Dubai home of productive individuals who believe that everything is possible. 

“In Dubai, time is moving very fast. I love Dubai, and this place is a home for me. As long as I feel happy, I will stay in Dubai. Dubai is successful,” he said. 

Rabih considered himself a concept builder. Aside from being an expert in hospitality, he also loves to intellectualize and revolutionize the world of food and beverages. 

“I am a concept builder. I make a perception of the world. I have many notions of food and beverages from Italian and now Filipino cuisines and coffee,” he shared. 

Filipino spirit

According to Rabih, Barako Art Café is like a small house of Batangas in Dubai. It offers a variety of Filipino foods and their best seller Barako coffee (a coffee bean from the Philippines). 

“Filipino friends helped me developed the concept of Barako Café and Pinoy Word. I selected the Filipino idea because the community has a vast audience in Al Rigga, Deira. I love Kabayans (Filipinos); they are so peaceful and intelligent. 

Currently, his business is a home of many Filipinos and other nationalities who love to try variants of coffee proudly made by the Barako Café itself. 

This story has been featured in the 11th issue of Dubai Vibes Magazine. To get a copy, you may contact Ms. Elaine “Bella” Marbella at +971503196856. If you have an inspiring story or know someone with one, please send an email to us at eic@dubavibesmagazine.com

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