Last August, the headline on the cover of Polo Lifestyles read, Polo is Back, and it really was. The UK season was in full swing, albeit without spectators, hospitality or the usual fanfare befitting of it’s historical significance and proximity to The Crown. It felt disconnected. It felt forced. It felt lackluster. But, perhaps most importantly, it went on – it happened.
When the Argentine season kicked off and we saw the photos and videos of empty stands in Palermo, it still felt weird. Our photographers were under strict Covid-19 restricted access, but they prevailed with still-stunning imagery from that hallowed polo ground.
Then came the December-January lull. Maybe no one knew what was going to happen. Maybe the polo world was just being extra cautious, but it was quiet. Eerily quiet. Just days before the New Zealand BMW Polo Open, the national government shocked the nation when it announced that, despite best efforts and nearly 100 percent national lockdown, cases of Covid-19 had surfaced in the population. Lucy Ainsley, executive director of The Polo in New Zealand, was forced to cancel tickets and hospitality tents last minute.
So it should have been no surprise to me when the Florida season started, quietly and without fanfare at first. But in Florida, polo is gaining ground and making up for lost time. At the International Polo Club, teams completed the unfinished 2020 Gold Cup. For The Gauntlet of Polo, the U.S. Polo Association is selling their fabulous brunch tickets once again. As photos and results started rolling in, our team crowded around my laptop to look at the photos. “Those must be from last year,” someone commented. “I can see spectators in the background.” We’ve become to accustomed to spectator-less polo that seeing fans on-site felt jarring. It also felt like polo – because polo is a lifestyle, as we often are heard saying at our office, on the phone or over Zoom calls. Without the lifestyle, you don’t experience polo as it’s intended; never has been that been made clearer than in the last 12 months. It’s the cars, the fashion, the food and drinks, the people-watching and the divot-stomping.
If Florida is a preview to the 2021 polo season, then we’re moving in the right direction. In the meantime, we’re going to continue bringing all of the Polo Lifestyles aspects you know and love to you, each and every month. We hope you enjoy this issue about wealth: its power, its lure, its benevolence – and that you might be inspired to do something good with yours.
Best, Josh Jakobitz