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Royal winners at 2019 Sentebale ISPS Handa Polo Cup in Rome

HRH, The Duke of Sussex and St. Regis Connoisseur Nacho Figueras, both playing on the Sentebale St. Regis Team, celebrated the annual invitation-only Sentebale ISPS Handa Polo Cup, along with Lisa Holladay, Global Brand Leader, St. Regis Hotels & Resorts.

St. Regis Hotels & Resorts, sponsor of the Sentebale St. Regis Team, joined Sentebale for the highly anticipated 2019 Sentebale ISPS Handa Polo Cup, with the match taking place at the Roma Polo Club on May 24. The annual fundraising event raises money and awareness for Sentebale, the charity founded by The Duke of Sussex and Prince Seeiso, which supports vulnerable children and young people affected by HIV in Lesotho and Botswana in southern Africa.

In one of the most anticipated events of the polo season, Sentebale’s Founding Patron, The Duke of Sussex, played on the Sentebale St. Regis team, captained by St. Regis Connoisseur and Sentebale Ambassador, Nacho Figueras, against the U.S. Polo Assn team, captained by Malcolm Borwick. In an exhilarating match, the Sentebale St. Regis teamclinched victory over the U.S. Polo Assn team for a final score of 9 to 6.  

Throughout the event, guests were granted access to prime viewing from an exclusive St. Regis pavilion while enjoying signature St. Regis Butler Service. A St. Regis bar offered the best in Italian hospitality, featuring a cheerful wall of lemons and hand painted ceramic tiles. Guests enjoyed libations from Belvedere and Chandon such as a Spritz, Ruby Tonic and Polska Mary, in addition to rosé and champagne. Celebrating the brand’s gilded age heritage and modern glamour, St. Regis created an exquisite environment to socialize while cheering on the teams complete with chic and colorful hand fans and verdant floral displays. Nestled outside of the city center, the Roma Polo Club is Italy’s oldest polo club, with guests of the polo match enjoying grounds that include stables, a swimming pool and colonial style Club House. Prior to arriving at the polo field, St. Regis guests were treated to a hospitality suite at The St. Regis Rome, featuring the brand’s signature Bloody Mary Cocktail (a St. Regis brand ritual as the cocktail’s original recipe was perfected at the King Cole Bar at The St. Regis New York in 1934) while enjoying being fitted for bespoke sandals.

Following the polo match, attendees experienced a traditional St. Regis Midnight Supper at The St. Regis Rome, which recently completed a 40 million euro full scale renovation.

The Midnight Supper is a St. Regis tradition reimagined for the modern times. The founding family of St. Regis, the Astor family, epitomized New York high society at the turn of the twentieth century and Caroline Astor, family matriarch and doyenne of glamour, was well known for her exclusive, late-night gatherings. Guests sipped Ruinart champagne before entering the iconic Ritz Ballroom at The St. Regis Rome, which opened in 1894 as the city’s first public ballroom, and which provided the backdrop for the Midnight Supper. Draping greenery and seasonal florals provided the perfect accent to the room’s historic Mario Spinetti frescoes while colorful patterned plates and fresh fruit adorned the tables. St. Regis Rome Executive Chef Francesco Donatello, in collaboration with 3-Michelin starred restaurant Da Vittorio, created the menu, which featured the signature Da Vittorio tuna spaghetti and pasta Da Vittorio style. Following the dinner, guests were treated to a family style grappa tasting in The St. Regis Rome’s LUMEN Lounge.

St. Regis, partners of Sentebale for tenyears, has long been associated with the world of polo, beginning at the turn of the last century when the Astor’s, were a prominent fixture at the matches on Manhattan’s Governors Island.  That association continues today, expanding around the world alongside the brand’s growth, and the past few years have seen St. Regis hosting spirited polo matches in Aspen, the United Kingdom, India, Thailand, Singapore, Dubai and South America, among other global destinations.

Nacho Figueras has been a St. Regis Connoisseur (brand ambassador) since 2010. In this role, Figueras helps shape future guest experiences for the brand and cultivates the next generation of St. Regis guests, while bringing awareness and appreciation to the iconic international sport of polo.

St. Regis, which today has more than 40 hotels worldwide, recently debuted the beautiful renovated St. Regis Rome, a short drive from the match at the Eternal City’s best address.

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