The Royal Commission for AlUla and La Dolfina Polo Team has announced a long-term partnership created to support the implementation of AlUla’s equestrian strategy, which aims to make AlUla a reference place for horse activities in the region, and a must-visit destination globally for horse enthusiasts.Adolfo Cambiaso, founder of La Dolfina Polo and widely regarded as the best polo player in history, will also become a destination advocate for AlUla.
The team also announced that it will be returning to AlUla to compete in the 2022 Desert Polo event after a successful debut at the world-first competition in January 2020, the country’s first official polo tournament. Set in the unique, specially-built desert arena in the shadows of the ancient site of Hegra, AlUla Desert Polo (February 11-12 2022) is one of the most unique locations to ever host the sport and provides an awe-inspiring backdrop for the best polo players in the world to perform.
This new partnership is a step towards the implementation of AlUla equestrian strategy, which aims to make AlUla a reference place for horse activities in the region, and a must-visit destination for Horse enthusiasts.
The partnership, supported by the Saudi Polo Fedaration, will bring together unique expertise through a new model of sport partnership built around three main cornerstones: cultural and equestrian synergies, a shared commitment to excellence and the development of the sport of polo in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
The Argentine-based team, described as “a perfect team” due to its 40-goal handicap, made history by winning three consecutive Triple Crowns (Tortugas Open, Hurlingham Open and Argentine Open in 2013, 2014 and 2015). La Dolfina is the only team in polo history to hold this record.
“When we travelled to AlUla for the first Desert Polo, we were blown away by the breathtaking landscape of Hegra, Saudi Arabia’s first UNESCO World Heritage Site, and the entirely of the stunning desert of AlUla,” said Cambiaso.
“We learnt that the relationship of the Arabian Peninsula and horses extends for thousands of years as found in the archaeological inscriptions on the rocks in and around AlUla. Through the stunning intricately carved tombs at Hegra and the ‘open air library’ of Jabal Ikmah, we can understand how humans began to tame these magnificent creatures, and the role of the horse in the development of civilized human beings."
Cambiaso added “We were very lucky to be amongst the first to experience these sites before it was an open destination throughout the full year, and now we look forward to returning. Desert Polo was an incredible event that not only introduced polo to Saudi Arabia but also helped the polo world discover Saudi with new eyes through AlUla. Seeing the commitment and passion to develop in polo, and sports in general, is a mission we share and want to help with.”
Phillip Jones, Chief Destination Management and Marketing Officer of the Royal Commission for AlUla, added, “Our role is to preserve and develop AlUla as a global destination for cultural heritage and eco-tourism with a long-term plan that preserves the area’s natural and historic heritage, while establishing AlUla as an attractive location to live, work, and visit.
“Aligning with the number one polo player in the world allows us to fuse our history of horsemanship and Adolfo’s expertise in polo to preserve our heritage and promote equestrian sports in the nation. The horse heritage story is real and rich and deep in AlUla and we look forward to our role in raising the profile of the sport in the country,” he added.
“We are honored and very excited that La Dolfina, through their partnership with The Royal Commission for AlUla, will be part of AlUla’s visionary journey through time, as documented in their masterplan. We have had great support from Adolfo and all the La Dolfina players and look forward to continuing our collaboration to build the world’s most successful polo team.,” said Amr F Zedan, Chairman of Saudi Polo Federation.