Boutique café group Ralph’s Coffee joins Dubai’s booming specialty coffee scene

US fashion brand Ralph Lauren now operates 28 boutique cafés across 12 markets globally following the launch of its Mall of the Emirates outlet with franchisee Al Moajil Hospitality

Ralph Lauren now operates 28 Ralph’s Coffee outlets across 12 markets | Photo credit: Karan G


Boutique café group Ralph’s Coffee has launched in the UAE with a store at the Mall of the Emirates shopping centre. 

The coffee chain entered a franchise partnership with Saudi Arabia’s Al Moajil Hospitality in June 2023 to facilitate its launch in the UAE and Saudi Arabia.  

The Mall of the Emirates store, located next to Ralph Lauren’s Polo store, is the specialty coffee chain’s third in the Middle East – alongside two sites in Doha, Qatar. Ralph’s Coffee plans to open its first outlet in Saudi Arabia in the first half of 2024 in Riyadh’s King Abdullah Financial District. 


Read related content: Branded coffee shops become big business in the Middle East 

The first Ralph’s Coffee café was opened in August 2014 on the second floor of Ralph Lauren’s Polo store in New York. The fashion brand now operates 28 coffee shops across 12 markets, including eight in the US, six in Japan and three in China.  

There are myriad opportunities for specialty coffee operators in Dubai which has one of the fastest growing economies and most developed premium retail footprints in the world. 

Industry leaders surveyed in World Coffee Portal’s Project Café Middle East 2023 report cited the growth of specialty coffee as the most important consumer trend in the Middle East, considerably ahead of price consciousness and the growth of drive-thru and delivery channels. 

International specialty brands such as Japan’s % Arabica, the UK’s EL&N and Germany’s The Barn have all garnered a loyal customer following, operating alongside premium domestic chains including Boon Coffee, SHOT and Absolute Zero Café. 

The UAE is also a hotpot for luxury fashion- café brand tie ups, with Giorgio Armani’s Armani/Caffè, Maison Kitsuné’s Café Kitsuné, Tiffany & Co.’s Blue Box Café and Zara’s first-ever Zara Café all launching in Dubai within the last six months. 

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