Jason Rose, founder and owner of the Bentley Scottsdale Polo Championships: Presented by Talking Stick Resort (thepoloparty.com), fills us in on what to expect from this year’s event, happening Nov. 5 at WestWorld of Scottsdale.
An overhead view of The Polo Party PHOTO COURTESY OF THE POLO PARTY
Luxury vehicles provided by the event’s title sponsor, Bentley Scottsdale PHOTO COURTESY OF THE POLO PARTY
What can readers expect overall from this year’s polo event? Last year, we set a record for ticket sales and nearly a quarter mile of tents. So far this year, we are on pace to top that. This community—and people around the country—continue to respond to our unique lifestyle event that has become the most attended day in American polo. Many years ago, we set out to become the ‘Phoenix Open of USA polo’ and we are grateful to the many people that have helped us do that.
Shane Doan is making his polo debut this year. SHANE DOAN PHOTO COURTESY OF KELSEY GRANT/THE ARIZONA COYOTES
More specifically, what will some of this year’s highlights be? Besides some terrific polo matches, the strength of the event is that there is always something for everyone. We provide many diverse experiences beyond polo. This year will include not only fashion shows—including those of the canine variety—but performances by the Phoenix Boys Choir, the Arizona Opera, a top saxophonist, jazz bands, DJs, and displays of dozens of collector and exotic cars led by Bentley Scottsdale and Barrett-Jackson.
Natalie Grancharov Camacho and Alejandro Pombo PHOTO COURTESY OF THE POLO PARTY
Are there any specific players to watch this year and any specific matches to pay attention to? It’s always terrific to have Nic Roldan, the best and most well-known player in the U.S. playing. We are very happy he will be back leading the Aspen Valley Polo Club. In addition to Nic, there are two excellent surprises on tap. From across the pond—and for the first time in several years due to COVID—we will see the Wales Polo Team play the Royal County of Berkshire Polo Club. Both teams count King Charles as a member, thus this marks our new King Charles Salute Match in honor of the new king, and the return of two of our favorite teams who have played in the event before. Then, there is something unique—the polo debut of former NHL and Arizona Coyotes star Shane Doan. He’s quite an equestrian but has never played polo before. That’s why he is training in the weeks leading up to the event to debut his ‘horse hockey’ skills with the Arizona Polo Club team Nov. 5.
Nic Roldan PHOTO COURTESY OF THE POLO PARTY
What are some things about this event that may surprise readers? This year, you can get a prosecco and popcorn combination via Harkins Theatres, or party the entire day away in a dayclub activated by Talking Stick Resort and Scottsdale nightclub Riot House. Their tent is kind of like our Bird’s Nest. For years, the Sanderson Lincoln Black Label Lounge has been a staple of the event, and this year, a wine tasting element will be added to accompany the acoustic guitar showcase they added a couple of years back. We are also thrilled that the purveyors of spring training in Scottsdale, The Charros, will again be bringing the energy and experience they do at the San Francisco Giants spring training games to an expanded Charro Lodge, which debuted on-site last year. Finally, this will be the third year that former NFL star Ac Caswell hosts his ‘Million Dollar Mingle’ on-site, which provides even more energy for a day like no other in Arizona.
A group of well-dressed gents at a prior Polo Party. PHOTO COURTESY OF THE POLO PARTY