Page 105 - Simply Abu Dhabi Magazine II

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The thing about staying at the Emirates Palace Hotel is
that is you truly feel like you’re being treated like royalty
and the feeling extends to the facilities and attractions
located nearby. So it’s hardly surprising to discover that
many royal figures have frequented the Ghantoot Racing
and Polo Club. Being so close to this world renowned
Club there was no way we were going to pass up on the
opportunity to mix with the glamorous set and experience
a Polo match first hand. Exclusive days out don’t get much
better than this and it is a must for all fans of the sport
of Polo, like us. One of our favourite things about Abu
Dhabi is the open-mindedness and the fact that you get
the chance to mix with all cultures and religions. And
with celebrated attractions such as The Ghantoot Racing
& Polo Club luring key figure heads such as his Excellency
Natsagin Bagabandi, President of Mongoilia, the Price of
Bahrain, the Sultan of Brunei and Prince Charles, it’s easy
to feel like royalty, whoever you are, as you spend the day
in this elating club in blissful surroundings.
First class facilities
Inspired by the progressive vision of the late President
HH Sheikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan and run under
the patronage of his son HH Sheikh Falah Bin Zayed Al
Nayhan, this is the only Polo Club in the Emirate of Abu
Dhabi and as such, we could sense the prestige in the air.
The Ghantoot Racing & Polo Club hosts major regional
polo tournaments, such as the Tridex Cup and HH the
President’s Polo Trophy. There are also regular Chukka
tournaments and major international events from mid
October to April. The internationally recognised Polo
team participates in events and tournaments around the
world and has won prestigious medium and high goal
tournaments in Spain, Belgium and France. Basically,
the Polo club is a place where there is always something
thrilling going on and plenty of people around who want
to be a part of it. Now it was our turn.
The Sport of Kings
Set in 300 hectares of flourishing grasslands, with
seven grass polo fields built to international standards,
the Ghantoot Racing and Polo Club is the ideal
entertainment and conference venue with a 2000 seater
grandstand equipped with VIP entrance, media facilities
and business centre. Boasting three floodlit Polo fields,
Ghantoot prides itself on being the best polo club in
the Middle East and throughout the day we came to
appreciate just why.
Due to the exclusivity of the club and its stunning
location in Abu Dhabi we were immediately struck
by the realisation that we were privileged enough to
be experiencing something very special. Celebrities,
visiting kings and the Royal Family are amongst many
prominent personalities who have enjoyed the facilities
and discovered more about this internationally popular
sport and now we were lucky enough to have the chance
to follow in their famous footsteps.
With stables for over 200 top class polo ponies, it is the
first and only Polo breeding centre in the Middle East and
the club also breeds Arabian and beautiful thoroughbred
horses which horse lovers will be in awe of. We certainly
were as we looked around the six fully equipped stables,
five paddocks and the impressive outdoor training ring.
By this time we had worked up an appetite so headed off
to the Clubhouse for a spot of lunch and an exhilarating
afternoon of Polo spectating.
From the colonial style clubhouse we were treated to
marvelous views of the Polo field whilst we sampled a
delicious freshly prepared Italian style meal. We couldn’t
wait to relax and enjoy the World-class Polo facilities we
had heard so much about. You could feel the excitement
in the air and we definitely experienced a huge adrenalin
rush as we watched a thrilling Polo race unfold. Anyone
wishing to host a spectacular private function to make an
impact couldn’t fail to be impressed by the facilities at the
grand colonial style club house. We certainly felt like kings
as we sat back to watch a Polo match. Not that we were
sitting back for long – despite the relaxing environment
we were soon on the edge of our seats! Hanging out in one
of the VIP lounges at the exclusive Ghantoot Racing and
Polo club had to be amongst the highlights of our visit to
Abu Dhabi.
Ghantoot Racing & Polo Club also offers a variety of
sporting facilities including tennis and volleyball courts,
a fully equipped gym, a swimming pool and sauna.
Whether you’re hosting a product launch, a conference,
a concert or looking for a stunning setting to entertain
family and friends in prestigious style, the Ghantoot
Racing & Polo Club ticks all the right boxes. A&J would
like to express our warm thanks and sincere gratitude
to the lovely Carrie McNeill who is responsible for all
marketing for Ghantoot. Her humble, yet classy approach
and guidance not only to the club but Abu Dhabi in
general, was above and beyond exceptional. We enjoyed
a wonderful day at the club and thank Carrie and her
team for their unparalleled hospitality. We would also
like to thank Sheikh Falah Bin Zayed Al Nayhan because
without his passion and commitment to the sport and
his devotion to the club, our incredible day out would
not have been possible and believe us when we say we
wouldn’t have missed it for the world!
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