Haute Event: British Polo Day Dubai

Last Friday Dubai’s Polo & Equestrian Club welcomed a glamorous and sophisticated crowd as British Polo Day Dubai returned for its third successful year. Sponsored by Hackett and organized by Dubai-based Tom Hudson, President of the Old Etonian Association Middle East, the event saw British polo players competing each other with teams from Oxford, Cambridge, Eton, Harrow, the Cavalry & Guards Club and The British Army. Partnered with some of the most esteemed British brands such as Hackett, Bentley, Connectjets, Backes & Strauss, The Hideaways Club, Intercontinental Park Lane, David Redman, Walpole, Fin’s For Him and Beulah London, the day became a celebration of the best of British culture and fashion.

The game kicked off first with camel polo with the Calvary and Guards Camel Polo players overtaking the Old Etonians. Next off Oxbridge (sponsored by The Hideaways Club) claimed victory over the Cavalry & Guards (sponsored by Thales) with a 4-2 win for The Redman Vase followed by Eton (sponsored by Backes & Strauss) who reversed last year’s defeat to Harrow (sponsored by Intercontinental Park Lane) in The Princes’ Cup winning 3-0.

The final match was played between the nations of Great Britain and the UAE: The Hackett British Army Polo Team versus Habtoor Polo (sponsored by Bentley Emirates). Habtoor Polo won the victorious Thesiger Trophy, a sculpture by George Bingham of HH Sheikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan which was inspired by a photograph Sir Wilfred Thesiger took during his visit to the Empty Quarter in 1950.

Players and extravagant guests partied the night away at the VIP After Party organized by Logsdail London at XL, the new beach club at the Habtoor Grand. An additional feature of the party was the launch of Lady Natasha Rufus Isaacs’ new fashion label Beulah London and local Dubai-based designer C by Clarissa unveiling her latest collection “The Legacy.” 

High profile guests included HRH Prince Rashid bin El Hassan of Jordan, Lord Astor of Hever, the Duke of Roxburghe, American rapper and singer Flo Rida, Sir Maurice Flanagan (Vice Chairman of Emirates Group) and Lady Audrey Flanagan, British Consul General Guy Warrington, Defense Attache Rupert Robson, Miss UK and Miss World Sport & Fitness Amy Guy, Lord Reading and his daughter Lady Natasha Rufus Isaacs.

One of the Middle East’s most prestigious social and sporting events, British Polo Day is about building bridges across cultures through sport. “I’m pleased to have transported a slice of Britain to Dubai for this weekend- polo, ponies and picnics are quintessentially British, and this year the event was even bigger and better than we could have hoped for”, said Tom Hudson, Co-founder of British Polo Day. The tradition of British Polo continues internationally with British Polo Days planned in China, India and Singapore later this year.