Preview: The Veuve Clicquot Polo Classic
by Alexandra Calamari
The third-annual Veuve Clicquot Polo Classic comes to Califonia again this Saturday.
On October 6, the third-annual Veuve Clicquot Polo Classic returns to Will Rogers Polo Club at Will Rogers State Historic Park in the Pacific Palisades. The event, co-hosted by renowned Argentinian polo player Nacho Figueras and his wife Delfina Blaquier, alongside designer Rachel Zoe and her husband Rodger Berman, and president of Veuve Clicquot U.S., Vanessa Kay, draws some 6,000 guests, including celebrities and polo enthusiasts from around the world.
The champagne starts flowing at 11 AM, which should give you plenty of time to find a suitable guide to give you the play by play for the 2 PM title match between team Nespresso and Figueras’ team Black Watch. Tickets ($25) can be purchased online, and go to support the historic host park. Find our comprehensive preview of the event below, including what to expect, how to dress, and why Angelenos should tune in to this exciting sport.
Ticket holders will gather around the legendary polo grounds to watch the match, but that’s only a small part of the celebration on Saturday. With Veuve Clicquot Yellow Label and Rose champagne being poured at specialty bars all over the park, and bites being served by legendary food trucks like the Border Grill Truck, Coolhaus, and the Lobsta Truck, mingling is a must.
Meanwhile, VIPs will help pay tribute to one of the most renowned matches in polo’s history—the Epic Polo Match of 1922, a heated game in Delhi, India that saw over 150,000 spectators. Kay gave us the inside scoop on the tent, hinting that it will be donned in rich colors, beautiful marigolds, and is set to feature traditional belly dancers among other entertainment. Come half-time, all spectators will be invited onto the field to stomp the divots, a fun tradition that presents the perfect opportunity to flaunt your polo fashions (more on that later).
Polo in LA:
Although the sport of polo has a storied history throughout the world, its roots in Los Angeles are especially intriguing. LA boasted 22 polo fields in its heyday, but Will Rogers Polo Club is now considered the last remaining club in the county. Keeping that front-of-mind—and also honoring the fact that the Will Rogers Polo Club once welcomed famed Angelenos Walt Disney, Spencer Tracy, Clark Gable, and Douglas Fairbanks—Veuve Clicquot has teamed up with polo leaders like Nacho Figueras to bring the sport back.
“Polo is a great team sport that combines athleticism and passion,” says Figueras. “I love sharing my enthusiasm for polo with others, and my hope is that the people of Los Angeles learn to love the sport as much as I do.” When asked if we could count on another victory from Black Watch, Figueras replied, “I hope to lead Black Watch to another team victory! Both teams look forward to playing an exciting match in support of Will Rogers State Historic Park.”
The Dress Code:
For whatever reason, whenever horses are involved, big hats follow as the accessory of choice for women. The Veuve Clicquot Polo Classic is no different, so break out your caps and fascinators to match your upscale summer attire (who cares if it’s October?). For an alternate means of shade, Veuve Clicquot has partnered with LA-based Penelope Parasols to create a custom parasol for the match ($189, $99 at the match). The 100% silk accessory is smaller than an umbrella, with a luxurious hard-wood handle and an overall designed inspired by vintage parasols.
As for what colors complement that daring Veuve Clicquot yellow, Penelope Parasols designers Lynn Taylor and Teresa Connors tell us, “bottle green, navy blue, and aubergine—and white always works at polo! You can also have a little fun with stripes, polka dots, or florals, or find a great pair of heels or a chunky bracelet in the signature Veuve Clicquot color to bring it all together.”
For men, Figueras, who is a long-time model for Ralph Lauren, says, “Summer suits and light colors are a great and classic option. Men shouldn’t be afraid to take fashion risks at the polo field—at June’s Veuve Clicquot Polo Classic in New York, I wore white jeans and a blazer with a vintage t-shirt.” Guests can also pick up fashionable accessories at tents throughout the event, including Veuve Clicquot-branded sunglasses, panama hats, fans, polos, and more. For tickets ($25 and up), click here>> 1501 Will Rogers State Park Rd., Pacific Palisades, 310-454-8212
Photography by Charley Gallay/Getty Images (match, hats); Jason Merritt/Getty Images (Figueras/Zoe)
Cover shoot: September 2014 issue of Los Angeles Confidential magazine.