Meet The Retro Console Collector Who Has A House Full Old-School Gameboys And Nintendos

BY Olivia Phillips / Dec 10 2019 / 14:12 PM

Meerah Habtoor, the collector, the millennial sibling, and the retro game-lover...

Meet The Retro Console Collector Who Has A House Full Old-School Gameboys And Nintendos
Eva Kruiper
Meerah wears: Sunlight Pendant, Dhs63,500; (RH) Possession Open Bangle Bracelet, Dhs21,700 (two pieces); Possession Open Bangle Bracelet, Dhs40,500 (two pieces); Possession Ring, Dhs66,500; (LH) Possession Open Ring, Dhs15,900; Possession Open Ring, Dhs10,700; Traditional Watch, Dhs166,000, all Piaget. Abaya, Dhs1,700, Amal Murad

Meerah is all smiles, grinning ear-to-ear as she shows us a picture of her retro console collection in the family majlis at home. Old-school Gameboys, Nintendos and the like are stacked on top of each other like colourful vintage candy.

“I collect these pieces because of the memories that they bring back to me,” she explains wistfully. “I started playing video games at a really young age. My mother, God rest her soul, bought me my first Gameboy – one of those big, bulky, grey ones – and now my collection always takes me back to what I believe was the best part of my life. She got me one, and she got herself one, and we would sit and play together. She would always be the one updating me on new things.”

Delving further into the memories of when her love for gaming started, she radiates with the excitement only a real passion can conjure – but more than that; a passion that is doubled when you can share it with someone else.

And we completely get it. Childhood toys, your mum’s cooking, an old favourite film… they’re all so strongly intertwined with sentimentality, each with the power to immediately transport you straight back to a time and place.

Jewellery and watches provide the exact same feeling for me,” Meerah continues of her love of nostalgia. At 27 – firmly in the card–carrying millennial camp – she epitomises her generation’s love of looking back with rose-tinted glasses.

“With jewellery, it always has a story behind it, and the person who wears it in the next generation will just add on to that story,” she explains, rather romantically. “It doesn’t just hold beautiful memories, but it creates history as well.”

So which pieces in particular hold the dearest memories for Meerah?

“One of my mum’s vintage gold watches. I have a few pieces from her that I wear every day, as well as my Piaget Gala watch. I hope I can pass them all down to my children in the future – but only when I know they’ll truly appreciate the value of them!”

From the December 2019 issue of Harper's BAZAAR Arabia

Photography by Eva Kruiper
Styling by Anna Castan
Words by Olivia Phillips

Hair and Make-up: Sharon Drugan. Videographer: Augusta Quaynor at MMG Artists. Digital Direction: Elizabeth Kelly Photography Assistant: Reymund Ronald Lozano at HotCold Studio. Fashion Assistants: Anna Smolenko, Joyce Gereige and Zach Nouri. Producer: Elle Hutchinson. Producer’s Assistant: Brian Timmer