Polo, anyone? The sport of kings requires a large grassy field and horses traveling at high speeds, so space is a consideration. Therefore, only a couple of venues are actually in London, with others located further out.
Hurlingham's home is Fulham, West London. MINT Polo in the Park features three matches per day, June 8-10, 2012. Grandstand tickets start at £20 per person. Teams come from Delhi, Dubai, Sydney, Buenos Aires, Moscow, and London. Friday night is 'Twilight Polo' with tickets from £10, Saturday is 'Ladies Day' and Sunday hosts the finals. Hurlingham is a see-and-be-seen venue with a dress code.
Ham Polo Club
Eight miles west of Central London, Ham Polo Club has matches every Sunday with tickets from £20 per car or just £5 for walk-in spectators. A tournament schedule runs May through September. Check out the rules of the game to brush up on the spectator action. Tickets for £15 are available when world class teams from Pakistan and India compete in the July 14, 2012 CST Polo Classic. Definitely less formal than Hurlingham.
Guards Polo Club
Cartier International Polo Day on July 22, 2012 is one of the highlights of the English social calendar, attracting 25,000, including Hollywood celebrities. Tickets go on sale May 1, 2012 with prices to be announced. Smith's Lawn in the Great Park at Windsor, near Ascot, is home to Guards Polo Club, with HRH Prince Philip as President.
Tickets are available for The Cartier Queen's Cup, a who's who of polo, from May 22, 2012 through June 17, 2012. A £20 day ticket is required for each car entering the park near Windsor Castle. Close by, Coworth Park, the only hotel in Britain with its own polo grounds, partners with the Guards Polo Club to provide polo access for hotel guests.
Hurtwood Park Polo Club
Experience the excitement of the game, beautifully groomed horses and the pretty countryside. Set in the glorious Surrey countryside an hour southwest of London, Hurtwood Park Polo Club has weekend polo fixtures throughout the season. Tickets can be purchased in advance or at the gate.
Cirencester Park Polo Club
Approximately 90 miles northwest of London, in the heart of Gloucestershire, historic Cirencester Park Polo Club welcomes visitors at £20 per car entry fee. Join the tailgaters or pay an additional £5 per person for a day membership to the grandstands, dine in the clubhouse, take afternoon tea or drinks in the Thatched Bar while the sun sets over 3,000 acres of parkland. Gates open at 12:30 p.m. every Sunday and on holidays May through September. Occasional weekday matches also take place.
Ascot Park Polo Club and Epsom Polo Club
Perhaps you fancy having a go at it yourself? Operating year-round as training facilities, Ascot Park Polo Club teaches 2,500 men and women in the sport each year. Epsom Polo Club offers learn to play days throughout the year, where 85% of the participants are first-timers.
Laurie Jo Miller Farr