A GRAND celebration was held at Istana Nurul Iman on Tuesday to mark the first day of Hari Raya Aidilfitri as His Majesty the Sultan and Yang Di-Pertuan of Brunei Darussalam and Her Majesty Raja Isteri Pengiran Anak Hajah Saleha hosted an extravagant Hari Raya gathering for special VVIP guests.
His Majesty entered the reception hall wearing a red traditional Baju Melayu, joined by members of the royal family, smiling while happily greeting each and every one of the male guests and foreign dignitaries personally.
The monarch arrived at the event accompanied by His Royal Highness Prince Haji Al-Muhtadee Billah, the Crown Prince and Senior Minister at the Prime Ministerís Office; His Royal Highness Prince Mohamed Bolkiah, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade; His Royal Highness Prince Haji Jefri Bolkiah; His Royal Highness Prince ĎAbdul Malik; His Royal Highness Prince ĎAbdul Mateen; His Royal Highness Prince ĎAbdul Wakeel; and His Royal Highness Prince ĎAbdul Muntaqim.
Meanwhile, Her Majesty Raja Isteri Pengiran Anak Hajah Saleha greeted each of the female guests along with Her Royal Highness Paduka Seri Pengiran Anak Isteri Pengiran Anak Sarah, Her Royal Highness Pengiran Anak Isteri Pengiran Anak Hajah Zariah, His Majestyís daughters and other members of the royal family.
The reception hall carried an air of festive cheer, with a welcoming, joyful atmosphere accentuated not only by the decorations but also the smiling guests, all of whom eagerly awaited the opportunity to wish His Majesty and the royal family a Selamat Hari Raya.
Among the guests in attendance were Cabinet Ministers, state dignitaries, foreign diplomats and senior government officials. The guests were dressed in formal and traditional attire, some from their own respective countries, which added to the colourful nature of the celebrations.
As the reception went on, guests mingled and shared light conversations, while also taking photos.
Guests were treated to an incredible feast of exquisite food. The vast array of dishes on offer was spectacular, with delicacies both local and foreign, ranging from lobsters, oysters and sushi all the way to rendang, satay, nasi lemak and others.
The reception held on the first day of Hari Raya for VVIPs is part of the palaceís annual Hari Raya gathering, which continues for three more days as Istana Nurul Iman opens its doors to public, giving the people of Brunei the opportunity to see and extend their own Hari Raya Aidilfitri greetings to the monarch and the royal family.
- Borneo Bulletin
(31 July 2014)