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The Four Seasons of Rosario, OK! It’s not exactly, but that is what I felt upon arriving at La Ilusion Polo Club.  You spot the majestic gates from the turn off of the motorway and already you are reassured that this is a no expense spared, luxurious Polo Club.  We are greeted with a chilled glass of champagne and a friendly smile. You feast your eyes laterally over the vast land. The buildings are chic and the lawns immaculate. We hear a neigh in the distance as we are shown to our bedrooms. Wow! Huge rooms, gigantic bed with Egyptian cotton sheets and fluffy towels. Perfect!  Plenty of wardrobe space with plenty of hangers. Quality soaps and shower gels, everything you need to make you feel really at home.

After settling ourselves into our gently air-conditioned rooms, we then go and join the others to try horses. The beautiful Polo ponies are all ready for us, they have been preselected, following a brief questionnaire we were asked to fill in while booking.  They are neatly lined up, awaiting approval. We have chairs to sit on under the cool pergola with cold drinks on hand in the ice box. I was either very honest in my questionnaire or probably more likely; a professional eye was working out what kind of ponies we would like from chats in the car from the ride from the airport and a few carefully asked questions by our host. 

Great first stick and ball session! Horses selected with the reassurance that if we don't like any of them then there are more to try.  Happy professional grooms are ready with our ponies and we stick with the same guy throughout the trip. 

Hot from the session, but gently cooled by the breeze we head back to the clubhouse for more glasses of champagne or any beverage of our choice.  A great selection of alcohol and non alcoholic drinks served alongside a few tastefully selected snacks to keep us going until supper.

A long relaxing shower and we are ready for dinner. It’s a beautiful evening and the table has been set outside, the glowing lights from the infinity pool shine and highlight this amazing feature, a sequence of changing colors shows this amazing space, which is even equipped with a full DJ station.  The scene set, cool music pipes us through a very relaxing evening and yummy food served in a very relaxed way. You feel like you have joined one big family with everyone happy to help in any way you need.  We turn in for the night.

Breakfast has been laid out for us and is simple and plentiful, local pastries, healthy yogurt and fruits and decent coffee. Thank goodness! I spotted the European machine when I arrived!   Off to our first lesson.

We have one on one session, working on different elements that we either specifically want to work on or are suggested by our coach.  He has a great way of teaching without you feeling taught, breaking down the different shots and adjusting as you go.  Plenty of time at the end of the lesson to practice some more, there is no time limit here and no clock watching. You stop when you want to, the horses are many and are on hand.

Exhausted but happy, the pool beckons. Towels are laid out on the sun loungers; we are encouraged to help ourselves to the drinks and snacks but left in peace!  The pool is kept very clean and the water is just perfect!
Fully refreshed and well fed by another great meal at lunch we feel ready to play our first game. People are invited from the surrounding farms, shirts are handed out and there is a gentle buzz of competitiveness in the air. Teams selected well and we have a great game on this beautifully kept Polo field.

Once again the pool area transforms into a great lounge area to relax after chukkas. Drinks, snacks, swim if you want to cool down after the game or just relax and enjoy the post polo chat! An Asado is being prepared and a few others join us. Such a great evening amongst like minded people in a great setting! This is how we spent most days, mixed with a few trips to Rosario to sample some of their impressive restaurants. 

Our weekend trips to the Buenos Aires, we are advised on what hotels to stay in, someone has been sent in advance to get tickets and we look forward to finishing our polo holiday watching the Argentine Open. It’s very hard to leave the farm but we know for sure that we will be back. It’s the best and they just get everything right. And if you need anything out of the ordinary you just know that it’s not any trouble to ask and they will happily go and get it for you.

We learnt a lot and had great fun doing so, thank you once again and see you soon!

N Anderson
Conde Nast Publications Ltd

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