Obai & Hill wins Startup of the Year!


cover photo 

Seef District, Manama – February 18th 2015 – We are absolutely ecstatic to announce that OBAI & HILL has won the award for “Startup of the Year!” The Kingdom’s first Bahrain Award for Entrepreneurship recognizes and celebrates the achievements of Bahrain’s entrepreneurs. The goal is to further encourage socio-economic development to help spur a private sector-driven economy. Enterprises are evaluated based on their ability to demonstrate vision, ambition and business acumen, and winners are recognized as being trailblazers who have brought new innovations to Bahrain.

Wafa AlObaidat, the founder and creative director of OBAI & HILL, started the company in 2010 and officially registered in 2012, a public relations and design agency that has not stopped growing, expanding and succeeding since its inception. Wafa’s Q and A session reveals her experiences starting a business, her plans for the future and her emotions after winning this prestigious award.

Q: Why do you believe that OBAI & HILL deserves the award for “Startup of the Year?”

A: Obai & Hill has been continuously growing since it began in 2010 with our first client, Khaleejesque. Now, we have served over 40 clients around the region, our team has grown to 11 members, and we have more than 6,000 combined followers on social media. This award really gives us the extra push, serving as our first highly prestigious award as well as some added financial support in order to grow and develop the company further. We sincerely hope that this recognition allows Obai & Hill to set the example for future startups in the GCC.

Q: How has OBAI & HILL helped the socio-economic development of Bahrain?

A: Obai & Hill has hired a team of locals to take on the challenge of standing out among other more established and recognized brands in the region. I have offered employment to young, creative Bahrainis who are full of energy and fresh perspectives. In addition to the “basic” services that my agency provides, we have also started two separate product lines, Barrel and Drum and Sukkar, and a talent management subsidiary to the company. We are constantly expanding by requesting and providing services simultaneously to strengthen the Kingdom’s economy.

Q: Do you believe the Bahrain Award for Entrepreneurship will make a difference in Bahrain’s private sector? How?

A: Absolutely. I think the fact that the Bahrain Award for Entrepreneurship takes the time to investigate and assess all potential winners and their respective enterprises proves the Kingdom’s interest in the private sector. The recognition of few individuals for their success not only sets an example for other startups, but also encourages those who are thinking of starting their own business.

Q: Do you think the Bahrain Award for Entrepreneurship is strong enough to carry on for years and years to come?

A: I think the turnout at the event speaks for itself. It is obvious that people appreciate this type of friendly competition and will work harder to prove themselves. With these types of awards, it is crucial to maintain consistency to always give people hope. I believe the Bahrain Award for Entrepreneurship was a success right from the very start, and thus will continue on for many years as a mark of Bahrain’s support of the private sector.

Q: Have the last few years of your professional life lead up to this moment? Why?

A: Even though I could not be more proud to win this award, I have started and grown my business to invest in myself and in the Kingdom of Bahrain, not merely for the purposes of recognition. Having said that, I see this award as a symbol of encouragement and a reminder that I have made a difference. Now, I am more driven than ever to further excel and expand my business in hopes that one day it will become the name people recognize for top-notch services in PR and design.

Q: Looking back from the first day you decided to start your business till now, is there anything you would have done differently?

A: If I could start all over again, I would hire an accountant first and foremost. When I first launched Sketchbook Magazine, we were getting funds from events and advertisements, but they were not managed well. There was no budgeting or fixed allowances and salaries being given out. When I started my agency, my first investment was an accountant who made it his priority to control spending, handle budgeting, and negotiate production fees. Now, my accountant is my right hand man. I speak to him before making any decision, and we have been in a great place financially ever since.

Q: In regards to your enterprise, what are you most proud of?

A: In general, I am so proud of my team and the agency. We have come a long way in a short amount of time. However, I think I am most proud of the branding of my agency. I had a vision that I would hire young, creative, fresh minds that would offer clients that little extra something that could not be found anywhere else. I feel Obai & Hill has achieved this goal, and this branding helps us stand out from the crowd.

The Bahrain Award for Entrepreneurship is an annual event that offers specially designed prizes for winners in order to help further their business. More information can be found on their website.



For media enquiries, please contact:

Obai & Hill

Design and PR Agency

Nada El Barshoumi




Vapiano – Iced Tea In Town!

The restaurant that serves old-fashioned italian recipes using local meat , produce and cheese has now launched its exclusively manufactured ice tea.

Screen Shot 2015-02-05 at 9.54.45 AM

It comes in four fruit flavors, including Green Tea (Lemon Prickly Pear), Red Tea ( Pomegranate) , White Tea (Elderflower Mint) and black Tea (Peach Vanilla). Each flavor is available in a 500ml glass bottle and is made with carefully selected ingredients to provide a quick jolt of refreshment.

Vapiano Gets The Excellent Service in The Region Award

Vapiano Bahrain closed off 2014 on a high note after being awarded “Excellent Service in the Region” by Vapiano International. Vapiano and their staff, known as Vapianists, live by the Italian proverb “Chi va piano, va sano e va lontano” which means, “if you have an easy-going and relaxed approach to life, you’ll live more healthily and longer” and that attitude, earned Vapiano Bahrain this award. In addition, they’ve been awarded for their excellent, friendly, and welcoming service, dedication, and expertise in their trade with specialists dedicated to their stations of pasta, pizza, and salads freshly prepared to order.

The Weekender Vapiano is a casual dining Italian restaurant with made-to-order fire roasted pizzas, fresh house-made pasta and hand tossed gourmet salads. Vapiano Bahrain, located on the first floor of City Centre, puts a new spin on the dining experience with its urban upscale Italian decor and its modern customer service. The food is made in front of your eyes, using only fresh made pasta and ingredients to create exotic and mouthwatering dishes.


JANUARY 28TH 2015 – Manama, Bahrain: Barrel and Drum proudly announced the launch of their inaugural collection of wooden sunglasses, after an exciting launch party that took place on the 28th of January at Ezmeel in Riyadat Mall, Aali.

Founded by a group of young and passionate design professionals, Barrel and Drum is the brainchild of a desire to bring a fresh, contemporary and environmentally friendly eyewear alternative to the GCC.Barrel and Drum Sunglasses (1)
This debut collection, dubbed “The Classic Collection” consists of tried and tested styles, repurposed with their signature wooden frames. Each piece highlights the beauty of natural wood, in the form of iconic styles that can suit any gender. The collection includes timeless styles such as the Black Sandal Wayfarer, Bamboo Wayfarer, Zebra Wood, Ebony Wood Metal Rimless and Ebony Wood Rims, all brought together in a perfect fusion of form meets function.

Barrel & Drum’s glasses are constructed meticulously out of high quality eco friendly materials like bamboo and natural wood.

“I am so thrilled to finally announce the launch of Barrel and Drum! We live on an island that has rich natural resources, and we wanted to create a brand that was earthy, natural and would offer a cool local eyewear alternative in Bahrain and the GCC. My team was really passionate to brand, market and create a full collection that would appeal to the younger generation ” – said Wafa Al Obaidat Creative Director of Obai and Hill and chief founder of Barrel and Drum.

Outdoor Seating


Barrel and Drum is a brand that goes back to basics. Believing in stripping back the pseudo-glamour and grandeur of designer eyewear to create pieces that are grounded, natural, yet still utterly stylish. Designed with contemporary and simplistic sensibility – Barrel and Drum can be worn by people from all walks of life who seek to do things a little differently.

Barrel and Drum sunglasses will be available to purchase online at www.barrelanddrum.me as well as select retailers across the GCC.



Barrel and Drum Team


Follow them on social media for the latest updates on Instagram – @barrelanddrum and Facebook – www.facebook.com/barrelanddrum and Twitter – @barrelanddrum



Juffair, Bahrain; January 27, 2015: ZOOM Market, the distinctive supermarket concept that has been sweeping through the United Arab Emirates, is finally opening its first outlet in Bahrain at Al Fateh Service Station in Juffair.

Defining the future of grocery shopping, ZOOM Market has won praise for its 24-hours service, 7 days a week, wide selection of quality products that meet the complete range of home needs and convenient delivery services. The new branch will also have dine-in options for customers. ZOOM promises to deliver a fast, easy shopping experience to customers seeking convenience and value.

An established supermarket concept that further builds on the ZOOM convenience stores with over 165 locations in the UAE, ZOOM Market’s Bahrain branch brings with it a café-bakery concept – the first of its kind in Bahrain



ZOOM Market aims to providing home-based fundamentals, such as fresh food products to customers with the highest level of efficiency and service, in an elegantly designed environment. Their products range from fresh fruits and vegetables, to meat and poultry, as well as other household and grocery items.

The outlet aims to provide further convenience through its extended ZOOM services counter where customers can pay their various utility bills and avail a host of other services.

The brainchild behind ZOOM’s presence through a franchise agreement in Bahrain is Bukhowa Investments Holding Company, one of Bahrain’s leading organizations and pioneers in the food and beverage industry successfully operating Yum Yum Tree food court for the last two decades.

“We are very excited to be opening our first ZOOM Market location in Bahrain,” said Chairman of Bukhowa Investments Holding, Dr. Adel Bukhowa. “Bahrain is such an amazing country with many different successful concepts and we are confident there is a place for ZOOM and are excited by the challenge.”

Burhan Al Hashemi, ENOC’s Managing Director of Retail, said: “We are thankful to Bukhowa Investments Holding for the partnership that expands our ZOOM retail concept to Bahrain. ZOOM Market has redefined the concept of neighborhood shopping with our focus on delivering fresh, high quality products with efficiency and the highest standards of customer service. We are confident that ZOOM Market will set a new benchmark in retailing
in Bahrain.”


photo 4

ZOOM Market is located at Al Fateh Service Station, Juffair and opens 24 hours a day, seven
days a week.



MALJA – A Red Bull Space: Countdown To Opening on January 30th



First community hub in the Middle East to support and connect

all types of Art in the most innovative way


Bahrain 18th January 2015-


Nested under the trees at the entrance of Amwaj Islands, Malja, Bahrain’s first open creative space is set to open its doors on January 30th at 4 pm with it’s first show Double tap and live graffiti performances, followed by the opening ceremony at 6:00 pm.

After taking over Al Osra’s old supermarket, creative hands and minds have been working for the past three months to transform this hidden place into a communal location to create, promote and support Arts in Bahrain and the Middle East:

spoon Consultants are leading the design of the 350 sqm multi-functional project space featuring their unique façade installation. The indoor and outdoor space is brought to light by LumenArts Lighting Consultants who are responsible for all the illumination.

Jody Peck [Artist] and Noof Al Refaei [Sikkeh Gallery] contributed with some of the interior featured furniture, while Sara Valente [spoon] andReine Lahoud took lead on the Landscape side.



On the curators’ front, Tarik Omar and Hasan Hujairi are consulting on the sound room equipment and developing workshop ideas related to music and studio production. Meanwhile, Frances Stafford and Yasmin Sharabi art consultants, will manage the annual gallery which will be held in Malja’s main hall.

A team of story tellers are documenting Malja’s coming to life. Behind the camera, JEO’s Productions team of producers and cameramen are capturing every moment from the construction to the people involved.

In photos and writing, Noor Noorudin, Quentin de Pimodan, Melchior de Tinguy and Ali Haji are telling the story of Malja, on the blogwww.maljabahrain.com designed by Maroon Frog.




It will be a place for creative minds to learn, create, develop and perform by supporting and connecting all types of arts in the most innovative way.

For that Malja will be home to:

  • RBMA Quarter Tone Frequency Sound Space: 28.5 sqm dedicated for an Electronic Music Production facility and general music usage.
  • An Art Room: 33 sqm, room that gives space for special projects, creation and dance groups
  • The Gallery:  215 sqm with a stage available to host concerts for up to 250 people and art galleries

Part artist incubator, part gallery and art cultural curator, Malja’s core purpose is to give critical acclaim to involved artists, while breaking down regional barriers as well as financial and institutional constraints between them. It is a place to give artists a space, tools, and intimacy to unleash their creative side.

By mixing these different types of art, Malja wants to offer the creative minds with a unique experience and captivate art aficionados with concepts that take their passion to a whole new level.

On the opening week (Jan 30th – Feb 4th), Malja’s program will feature several artists from different disciplines who will give a sneak peek into the type of programs to expect at Malja.

To learn more about the opening and the full program visit:www.maljabahrain.com and join the conversation on social media;

Mustafa and tarek


Conor + mustafa

Facebook: www.facebook.com/maljabahrain

Instagram: @maljabahrain

#Maljabahrain #Bahrainculture


Screen Shot 2015-01-27 at 11.55.31 AM


Malja is a non for profit venue and is opened from 12:00pm to 10:00pm 7 days a week. For more information you can call: 32-323-000

Malja partners include: BMMI; Amwaj Islands Management, Batelco, Virgin Megastore, Likwid Productions, Hala Bahrain Show and Time Out Magazine.


Barrel and Drum Event Invitation

It’s finally happening! We are super excited to share with you all this great news about our first brand lunch!

Barrel and drum invites you to celebrate it’s lunch party on the 28th of January 2015 at Ezmeel in Riyadat Mall Bahrain at 7:00 pm!

Join us for a night of grub, fun and music by the local band ‘The Relocators’ Don’t miss out!



NEW CLIENT: Bahrain Livestock Company



Based in the Kingdom of Bahrain – BLSC is the sole provider of subsidized live, fresh and chilled meat. A subsidized imitative, BLSC was borne out of the need to privatize the meat industry in Bahrain. Obai & Hill is pleased to announce Bahrain Livestock Company as their latest client, for whom they will be providing a full re-brand and identity design. Stay tuned for more news on this exciting project!

Pure Adrenaline: Al Haddad Motors holds Mercedes-Benz Off Track Drive Day


MANAMA (ISA TOWN): Al Haddad Motors gave members of the Bahraini Media an opportunity to experience the performance of the dynamic Mercedes-Benz SUV range during an exhilirating all-day drive event held on Saturday the 13th of December at the off track course at the Bahrain International Circuit. Among the vehicles tested were the ML 63, ML 400, ML 500, GLK 250 as well as the the GL 500.

Graeme Newport, General Manager of Al Haddad Motors said: “Within the Mercedes-Benz Driving Events, this new initiative of the off-track drive day will expose the media to the performance of our powerful and versatile SUV vehicles. It takes a circuit like this one to experience the full capability and agility of a car like the all new ML 400 or the GLK 250, for example. ”

The Off Track Drive Day event which lasted from 8:00 AM until 4:00 PM was one to remember above previous test drives because Al Haddad Motors provided 6 cars for the media, making it a major test drive of contemporary luxury SUV vehicles from Mercedes-Benz Bahrain.

Particpating members of the media were able to witness first hand the optimized and upgraded features that the range is equipped with, including AVS, a computer-controlled system that continuously adjusts shock absorber damping rates to inmprove ride comfort and handling on steep declines. The V6 GL-Class has options like the AIRMATIC package for better ride control which helps in getting over the toughest of roads and worst terrains.


Among the obstacles that the media hand to maneouver around were 70, 75 and 85 degree slopes, ditches as well as a seesaw on the water.

In addition, the test venue at the Bahrain International Circuit, is certified by FIA as a Grade A obstacle course, so participating media became fhte first group of general individuals to test this world-class racing circuit, with driving instructors from Mercedes-Benz as their mentors.

The launch this iniative highlights Al Haddad Motors unfaltering commitment to showcasing the passion and performance in their automobiles.




Behind the Brush: Make-up Extravaganza Event at Salad Boutique


Mai Al Moayyed – The Make-Up Manual

Azhar Hubail – AH Make-Up

Marwa AlJaber – Mad Cosmetics


You are cordially invited to join us for this exciting event alongside the launch of Salad Boutique’s Afternoon High Tea.


Date: Wednesday December 10th, 2014 at 7pm.

Location: Salad Boutique restaurant, 338 district, Adliya


The panel discussion will be followed by a live make-up demonstration by the panelists as well as two exciting pop up shops.


Join us for a fantastic evening of festive fun and glamour!


Spaces are limited, please RSVP to accounts@obaiandhill.com or call 17536092 to book your spot.