Kristy Servati, the marketing director for the Horseshoe Club and an active member of Carson City's Downtown Business Association, will be moving to Dubai in the United Arab Emirates this summer with her fiance, Trevor Ibbotson.
She moved to Carson City eight years ago and found work with the longtime Carson City casino.
Servati, who is no stranger to the Middle East, will move with her husband-to-be to the cosmopolitan desert city later this summer. She said they will stay there for at least two years.
The Nevada Appeal sat down with Servati last week to talk about her upcoming wedding, her move to a new country and her last eight years at the Horseshoe Club.
Nevada Appeal: Looking back on your time at the Horseshoe Club, what will you miss?
Kristy Servati: "We started a big art project because the place needed a refurbishing. So we really spent a good six, seven years really refurbishing it. All this is new, the restaurant is new, we raised the ceilings, we exposed the natural brick walls, redid the bathrooms, put in a much larger kitchen ... so that's going to be the hard thing is leaving here. It's been like our baby. It's still a family run business, it's still run like a family and that's what's really nice about this casino.
Appeal: How did your move to Dubai come about?
Servati: (My fiance and I) started dating in December and he is a senior project manager for Parsons in Dubai ... I actually went to Dubai a couple months ago and just loved it. He proposed and so I'll be getting married July 3. And then we're going to go to Paris for a few days for a little honeymoon and then head back to Dubai. And when I was younger I spent a lot of time in Iran, I was married to an Iranian for 10 years. I'm quite familiar with the Middle East. Dubai is a very interesting city because it's so international.
Appeal: What type of cultural changes will you face when moving to Dubai?
Servati: I do drink alcohol, and there are a few small shops, they're hidden, but you can go drink it in your house. The restaurants that are owned by the Emirati serve alcohol, but the rest of the restaurants are not allowed to serve it... One thing is you cannot be physical with your partner (in public). You think it's an easy thing, but it's hard. You just reach over without thinking about it and grab somebody or kiss somebody, so you have to be a little careful in that area because you want to respect their laws. I just went and saw the new movie "Sex and the City," and I was really glad they put that one scene in there where some women pull them into a reading group that they have... and they took their veils off... Yes they wear their veils on the outside, but when they go home they're in their jeans and T-shirts and they're very stylish... (While in Iran) I would always wear a veil, but I would remember going to the store in my jammies. It's not as serious as the West takes it.
Appeal: Will you be wearing a veil in Dubai?
Servati: No, I was surprised I saw young girls in shorts. They're pretty lenient over there, in Dubai, as long as you don't get physical. I'll be dressed just as I am.
Appeal: Dubai is known for some breathtaking architecture, including the world's tallest building, the Burj Dubai. Did you tour them while there earlier this year?
Servati: I saw all of the buildings, it's totally amazing. I keep telling everybody, I don't know if you've ever read "The Fountainhead," but if Howard Roark died, he's in Dubai. They've come up with this new core technology, meaning the elevator is the strong core. So once they came up with that they have a round building that looks like cord and buildings that swerve and buildings that do all sorts of things. It would be worth going there just for the architecture.
Appeal: Do you have any concerns about Dubai's fiscal crisis that came to a head earlier this year?
Servati: They're definitely feeling the recession there, it's finally hit them a little bit. But they're still building and the one thing about Parsons, they build most of the roads and highways and everything there. But it's slowed down a lot. I remember my finance telling me, if we came two years ago they had 800 positions to fill and they could get them filled and now they've been laying people off because it's slowed down a little bit.
Appeal: So besides marriage and moving to Dubai, what's next?
Servati: I had a marketing and graphic design business in La Jolla, Calif., for those many years... but I'm hoping to get back into a lot more graphic design, working with some of my older clients. When I had my business I had several artists working for me, but I ended up doing a lot of artwork my self... I work with a lot of nonprofits, San Diego Opera, UCSD Cancer Center...
In the month I'm renting my house out, moving all my furniture, planning a wedding, reorganizing my whole life. But it will be worth it, he's a wonderful man.
Servati said the can be contacted at Kristy.email@example.com.