An Interview with Nacho
Beauty Defined: Horses & Architecture
Perhaps the highlight of my year so far was being part of and attending La Biennale Di Venezia 2016 in May. Delfi and I were honored that the Figueras Polo Stables was chosen to be one of the architectural exhibits on display at the Biennale – and being able to share a manifestation of our vision, that beautifully and sympathetically showcases our polo ponies within our Cria Yatay breeding program. The stables have taken 3 years to build and include eco-friendly elements, as well as being fully functional to stable 44 horses. As a family we love nothing more than to play polo with our friends, care and tend to the horses and then relax in the tack room and lounge areas after a game. Needless to say the horses seem to love their new home! Being at the Biennale was fascinating and a welcome insight to one of my favorite disciplines: architecture. While Delfi and I were in Italy we spent a few days in Rome – helping to make the SPG TV ‘Destination Rome’ film which was a lot of fun and gave us interesting insights in this great city’s hidden treasures.
May continued to be an immensely fulfilling month thanks to the American release of my new trilogy, The Polo Season series. In an interview with CBS This Morning, I spoke about my intentions behind the novels. My hope is that they will popularize the sport of polo in a way that is accessible to anyone reading them, providing some lighthearted entertainment along the way! Polo is truly accessible and the characters in the books help bring to life the sport and the people and places where it lives.
It is an honor for me to be the first St. Regis Connoisseur since we share the same passion for Polo.
Ignacio Nacho Figueras
One of my favourite events is without a doubt given its historic and iconic location is the Veuve Clicquot Polo Classic, to which I returned in June for the ninth annual event. As always, VCPC drew an enormous crowd to watch polo against one of the most iconic views in the world – the New York City skyline. From there the entire family moved to California to Santa Ynez which is arguably one of the most beautiful places on earth. Huge sky, mountains and sunsets that just set the sky on fire. Polo is fantastic – and Hilario and I got to play together a lot; he is really coming along. Trail riding has become a family event – as a parent and spouse it is a truly wonderful feeling to be able to share our passion for horses and riding. Even little Alba hops up and sometimes takes a nap along the way. Something we have noticed as a family is the simple pleasure of good food, cooked from scratch, and preferably eaten out of doors! Delfi loves to prepare meals using local ingredients – fish, meat, vegetables and then invariably creates a delicious desert or two. And, of course there is always ice-cream!
Later in June I arrived in London for The Sentebale Concert at Kensington Palace, an event spearheaded by my friend and founder of the Sentebale charity for which I am an Ambassador. Sentebale carries out incredible work across a range of needs affecting children and young adults and in particular adolescents affected by HIV. The geographical focus is Lesotho, a country whose population suffers greatly at the hands of the disease. The Sentebale Concert raised funds which will go towards some special projects next year. The crowd enjoyed an evening singing and dancing in the rain to Coldplay, fellow Sentebale Ambassadors Joss Stone and George the Poet – in what can only be described as a truly British affair.
July was a month with less international travel which meant I could spend most of my time in the Hamptons with my family...
The Hamptons is such a beautiful part of the world – a place my family is lucky enough to call home for the summer. The children spend days on the beach, at the riding stables, and with their cousins. With the constant travelling that we all do, it is important for the children to have a base during the summer months. We cook, swim, surf, makes s’mores on the beach around camp fires – and play polo!
After this hiatus, August proved to be the busiest month of the summer. Between trips to Israel and Sardinia, Hilario and I took a father-son trip to Aspen to play in the Family Traditions at St. Regis Polo Cup, at the Aspen Valley Polo Club. St. Regis butlers were on hand at the intimate event to provide guests with the very best hospitality. Being able to share my favorite sport with my son is always a wonderful experience, and I am so proud of him, even when he eyes up my horses! Back in the Hamptons, this time without Hilario as my teammate, I played in the Piaget Hamptons Cup, raising money for Robin Hood, New York City’s largest organization against poverty. Delfi and I were invited by Palm Beach Illustrated magazine to appear in a feature for their January issue which was shot at The St. Regis New York – we love being in the city and it was a pleasure to see our familiar friends who work at the hotel.
September sees our return to Argentina from the US, where Spring is well and truly on the way – our young horses are growing up, and mares in foal are looking bigger than ever…and we are excited to welcome our first foals for the 2016/7 season who will be born in the coming months.