Plans to open a second outlet of a controversial ‘sex shop’ in Bahrain are likely to irk the Gulf state’s conservative Muslim population, a news website reported.
Al Arabiya said that following huge demand for products, including sex lubricants, Khadija Ahmed, owner at Khadija Fashion House in Manama, has signed a three-year lease for a second store in the capital.
The 32-year-old, whose shop sells more than 1,800 varieties of sex toys and lingerie, is also considering opening outlets in Dubai, Qatar and Lebanon, Al Bawaba added.
Ahmed said that while her concept had received some opposition from conservative parts of the community, it had proved popular with couples.
"I personally feel that the mindset of people has definitely changed, but there are some people who have their objections," she told the news site.
"The sheer fact that I am opening a second store in Bahrain means there is a clear demand for my products," Ahmed added.
She said that many of her customers came from outside of Bahrain, including from neighbouring Saudi Arabia.
However, Ahmed said that importing sex toys had become harder following a ban from Bahrain’s Industry and Commerce Minister. "I have ensured that my products, imported from the US, are not illegal and are sold to genuine couples whether in Bahrain or Saudi Arabia," she said.
"I have not done anything wrong and am only helping couples lead happy lives," Ahmed added.
She said that investors from other countries in the Middle East were eager for her to export the concept. "I have been approached by investors from Lebanon, Dubai and Qatar who want me to open outlets in their countries," Ahmed said.
Sex shops are by-and-large not seen across the region, except for in Turkey, where they are commonly found.