EDITORIAL

Europe had many polo highlights to offer this summer. One of them is just being built – in Alentejo, Portugal.

A magnificent busy polo season is drawing to a close in Europe. The Berenberg German Polo Masters on Sylt was one of the major highlights. Now in its 21st year, the tournament is one of the traditional annual fixtures in the German and indeed, European polo calendar. The record number of visitors together with the international line-up of teams who attended are testament once again to the increasing interest and appreciation of the sport on Germany´s northernmost island.

In Switzerland, the polo classic, Hublot Polo Gold Cup Gstaad once again lit up the polo stage in August. At 1,050 metres above seal level, amidst the Bernese Oberland mountains, team captain Dr Piero Dillier and his team: Lucas Labat, Bautista Beguerie and Juan Manuel González really showed the competition what winners look like. We can already look forward to August 2020, when this unique polo event will celebrate its 25th anniversary. With Pierre Genecand and his team at the helm, this jubilee is sure to be a truly memorable occasion.

The Open de France is well-known to be the most important, prestigious polo tournament in France. This year, after a hugely successful international polo season in Chantilly, the Chantilly “newcomers” from the Spanish team, Marqués de Riscal were able to demonstrate their skills on the pitch. The final of the Paprec Open de France 2019 also delivered on all expectations for the women´s competition.

In Three Roses, just 20 minutes away from Sotogrande in southern Spain, we visited the Iridike Polo Club. Thanks to the ideal winter climate in Andalucía, it is an excellent year-round polo destination in which to play, learn from experienced polo professionals and accommodate the horses.

Finally, we come to Portugal, just across the border from Spain. About an hour´s drive south from Portugal´s lively capital, Lisbon, lies the Alentejo. A little-known region that is making its mark on the map as the new “place to be”, as the new “Hamptons” of Portugal. Some prominent millionaires are already there. This is the just the beginning of a project that is set to transform the small country in the far western reaches of Europe into one of the polo hotspots of the continent and indeed, of the whole world. Project developer, Stefan Maria Gast knows what it takes to make the dream of creating the world´s best polo club in Portugal come true. We are looking forward to it.

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Thomas Wirth, Founder, thomas@poloplus10.com
© Thomas Wirth