Khalaf Ahmad Al Habtoor, Founding Chairman, Al Habtoor Group hosted more than 200 guests at the official opening of the Al Habtoor Polo Resort & Club in late September. Joanna Andrews reports on the glamourous occasion.
Guests arrived in their Sunday best at the world’s first-ever equestrian-inspired St. Regis hotel, part of the sprawling six million square foot Al Habtoor Polo Resort & Club, opened in style.
In his welcoming speech, Khalaf Ahmad Al Habtoor, Founding Chairman, Al Habtoor Group said he was proud to bring a new landmark destination to Dubai.
“The Al Habtoor Polo Resort & Club is unlike anything else we have in our portfolio. It offers the UAE something truly unique. The St. Regis Dubai, the centerpiece of the resort, is surrounded by lush greenery, four world-class polo fields and premium stabling for more than 500 horses. The riding school offers multiple riding disciplines from polo, dressage and show jumping to traditional horseback riding.”
He added, “The Al Habtoor Polo Resort & Club is the home ground for the Dubai Open, a high-goal tournament that has already established itself as one of the world’s top polo events, and reinforced Dubai’s standing within the global polo circuit. The Polo Season Opening will be an annual event to rival other large-scale polo events around the world.”
A marching band opened the event with the UAE National Anthem, after which there was an equestrian show to demonstrate the varied skills offered by the Polo Academy and Riding School. Guests were treated to a polo and showjumping demonstration as well as a dressage taster session.
The centerpiece of the Al Habtoor Polo Resort & Club is the Andalusian-style Regis Dubai, Al Habtoor Polo Resort & Club which boasts 151 luxury rooms including 30 St. Regis-branded villas. There are an additional 122 luxury villas surrounding the equestrian development. The gated community consists of 3, 4, and 5-bedroom homes directly overlooking the stateof- the-art polo fields. Each villa has a unique view of exquisitely landscaped development devoted to all aspects of equestrian life. Residents can enjoy all the equine offerings in state-of-the-art facilities or simply watch the world go by from their luxurious private haven.
In addition, the luxury development consists of 516 stables, a polo academy and riding school offering riding lessons for adults and children from new riders to experienced equestrians. An expert team of fullyqualified professional instructors are on hand to provide an array of lessons including polo, dressage, show jumping, and traditional riding.