Lights, cameras and step-and-repeat action were in full swing at Lux Afrique on Saturday 31st July — Europe’s premier African polo event. Nestled within the picturesque grounds of Hurtwood Park Polo Club in Surrey, the event saw polo aficionados and snappy dressers join forces while bringing a taste of Africa to the fashion and sporting forefront. In its third year, Lux Afrique saw many celebrities, politicians and other talent mingle in lavish African attire, showcasing a plethora of vibrant colours, prints and styles, which set the tone for the much-anticipated event.
The African community’s unprecedented wealth, class and beauty are often under-represented through the prism of mainstream media. Events like Lux Afrique help break down stereotypes and change the narrative around African culture and what it offers. Besides spotlighting world-class African polo players, Lux Afrique honoured the significant role African print design plays in defining a particular tribe, marriage and social status. As I expected, Lux Afrique was a celebration of patriotism and heritage in addition to courageous fashion and sport. It was challenging to whittle down my favourite outfits to ten due to fierce competition. Here are my top choices.
The only downside of the event was the weather which may have put a damper on divot-stomping – a half-time tradition at polo – but it did not hinder the cheerful ambience of Lux Afrique. A rainbow of vibrant yellow, royal blue, purple, pink and emerald green shone vehemently across acres of parkland — that is the power of African fashion. I felt increasingly excited to converse with guests about their outfits. Furthermore, the latter stimulated intrigue and fascination. Admittedly, I paid more attention to the styles, small servings of African cuisine and traditional music than the polo tournament itself. However, I am now familiar with such jargon as chukkas.
I had a whale of a time for my first post-freedom-day event, although there appeared to be a limited supply of complimentary food and beverages for press and VIPs. The hospitality was a disappointment in comparison to similar events I have attended in the past. On the whole, the few glasses of champagne in which I indulged among great company and glamour sated my creative appetite. A luxury shopping lounge, which included Clive Christian and Zenatti UK, provided a dose of retail therapy. Supercar enthusiasts also had the opportunity to view a spectacle of iconic supercars.
There were notable performances by DJ & Entertainer DJ Cuppy and soul singer Omar (Lye-Fook) MBE known professionally as Omar. Other talents in attendance included Akala, Patricia Bright, Levi Roots, Labour MP Dawn Butler and Brenda Emmanus OBE, to name but a few.
Ticket prices ranged from £59 for Standard tickets to £420 per person for Platinum tickets.
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