The Richard Mille AlUla Desert Polo, the world’s only modern polo tournament to be staged in a desert, will return to AlUla from January 26 – 28, 2023 in partnership with Polo Club Saint-Tropez – Haras de Gassin.
The tournament is organised in a collaboration between the Royal Commission for AlUla (RCU), the Saudi Polo Federation (SPF), Richard Mille – the title sponsor and tournament timekeeper, along with the legendary team La Dolfina Polo, and for the first time with Polo Club Saint-Tropez – Haras de Gassin, the summer destination of polo lovers from around the world, with AlUla being their distinct winter destination for the game of kings. The collaborations reflect the commitment of RCU to establishing long-term partnerships to develop the equestrian industry in Saudi Arabia and make the historic site of AlUla the premier destination for horse enthusiasts from around the world.
The eight competing teams will be led by an expert player from global polo icons, with the world-famous La Dolfina Polo team players back again joined by Facundo Pieres and Gonzalito Pieres and other professional players, while invited patrons and players drawn from both Saudi Arabia and the global polo community will make up the sides.
Widely regarded as the Sport of Kings, the one-of-a-kind tournament will guarantee guests first-class hospitality and unmatched beauty for a unique experience – perfect for polo, nature, lifestyle, and fashion enthusiast alike with more details to follow on exclusive events running alongside the tournament.
The Richard Mille AlUla Desert Polo forms part of the AlUla Moments calendar that includes five festivals and six marque events including the return of Winter at Tantora, AlUla Wellness Festival, AlUla Arts Festival, AlUla Skies presented by Saudia, AZIMUTH, Richard Mille Desert Polo, Endurance Cup Race, and the Ancient Kingdoms Festival. The polo is the first event of ‘Sports Events’ festivals alongside Saudi Tour Cycling (1-5 Feb), AlUla Trail Race (23-24 February), AlUla Endurance Cup 2023 (March 4), and more. The festivals offered a selection of experiences in art, culture, music, nature, wellness, equestrian, food, and astronomy. All of which were celebrating the culture, history, and legacy of AlUla and the civilisations that once called the land of AlUla their home.
Phillip Jones, Chief Destination Management and Marketing Officer, Royal Commission for AlUla said: “The Richard Mille AlUla Desert Polo kicks off our sporting calendar for 2023 and brings world icons from the polo world to AlUla once again. This is truly a one-of-a-kind experience that promises three days of first-class sport, stars, action, and style. Hosting and partnering with the world’s best supports AlUla’s ambitions builds in become a premier equestrian destination.”
“The success of the 2022 tournament deepened our involvement with the Royal Commission for AlUla and the Saudi Polo Federation, hence we are very proud to maintain our positioning as the title sponsor and official timekeeper of the Richard Mille AlUla Desert Polo. This year’s event is certain to be nothing short of remarkable as we will have the chance to witness some of the best polo players in the world in action as they compete against the iconic backdrop of the AlUla landscape” commented Peter Harrison, CEO of Richard Mille EMEA.
Alshair Fiyaz, Chairman of Polo Club Saint-Tropez – Haras de Gassin said: “We are thrilled to play an active role in the organisation of this year’s exceptionally promising edition. It will proudly mark the beginning of an ambitious partnership that will grow into an exciting long-term collaboration between our two international polo destinations.”
Located 1,100 km from Riyadh, in North-West Saudi Arabia, AlUla is a place of extraordinary natural and human heritage. The most well-known and recognised site in AlUla is Hegra, Saudi Arabia’s first UNESCO World Heritage Site. A 52-hectare ancient city, Hegra was the principal southern city of the Nabataean Kingdom and is comprised of 111 well-preserved tombs, many with elaborate facades cut out of the sandstone outcrops surrounding the walled urban settlement.
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