_3660615.jpg
_3590780.jpg
_3580472.jpg
_3660615.jpg

The Coolest Sport on Ice: Welcome to the Snow Polo World Cup games


Discover the unique sport of snow polo in Europe's winter playground for adults: St. Moritz. 

SCROLL DOWN

The Coolest Sport on Ice: Welcome to the Snow Polo World Cup games


Discover the unique sport of snow polo in Europe's winter playground for adults: St. Moritz. 

wintertime bliss - defined

St. Moritz, colloquially referred to by its Romansh name Engadin,  is a wintertime gem nestled well within the romantic alpine terrain of south-east Switzerland. Characterized by its warm embrace of leisure, affluent sporting activities, and high-street wellness offerings, it's the choice host for this year's 34th Snow Polo World Cup. And, it should come as little surprise that such an engaging high stakes sport was born out of this idyllic Swiss village decades ago. Since then, each year in the last week of January, the picture-perfect town transforms into a welcome party for many of Europe's foremost equestrians, showmen, and members of society looking to be a part of the fanfare that surrounds this beloved ice sport.

 
a member of the Cartier snow polo team with his pony

As fans of snow polo's mature and familiar cousin - matches played out on grass turf,  we're no strangers to the game - especially when spring gives way to summer and The Commonwealth engages in fun weekend-long festivities and championships in the name of philanthropy. Nowadays, in the colder months, we're looking to reinvigorate ourselves by celebrating the best that wintertime has to offer. Where better to do that than in the Swiss Alps?  With a mutual fondness of mountain living and a sport we can't get enough of - Polo -  we've headed to St. Moritz. In-between chukkas, Travlr Blog's correspondents will most likely caught warming up on the lake's Polo Village. After daily games, you can catch us at the laid-back Polo Bar in St. Moritz's legendary restaurant Chesa Veglia. Either way, We'll never be too far from the action, because it's time to witness the coolest game on ice and take in the local atmosphere in style: welcome to the 34th Snow Polo World Cup in St. Moritz!

Let the Games begin! #snowpolostmoritz

Played on the lake of St.Moritz itself,  the excellent make-up of the underlying ice means that a savvy team of 100+  infrastructure professionals are able to swiftly set up facilities just a couple weeks before the tournament each year. This season, demand for tickets is exceptionally high. Access to the VIP tent on Saturday and Sunday almost sold out days before the tournament; and, the exclusive Polo Gala night is only attainable if you snagged a spot last fall. If you're considering these games for next year's tournaments, it's worth noting that the well-kitted partner hotels book-up even sooner, not to mention the ample wellness offerings that make St.Moritz the sought after refuge that it is. From our polo hand-book to yours, take a suggestion from us and plan your travel arrangements in advance to secure the best that this weekend has to offer.

a view of the Swiss alps near Zermatt with golden retriever looking onwards

what to expect in edgadin.

Some 15,000 spectators from around the globe are expected to attend the world's only high-goal polo tournament on snow—admission to the action-packed tournament is free which means everyone can partake in the affair. Surrounded by snowy mountains and sunny skies, St.Moritz quickly fills up this time of year with colourful guests who are ready to relax while steeping themselves in a truly unique culture and  lifestyle - not to mention the contagious spirit of the game. 

This year, four top-tier teams defined by talented players from nine countries will once again compete for the coveted Cartier Trophy. The competition kicks off with a riveting encounter on 26 January (Friday) at noon and completes with only one true victor on 28 January (Sunday) in the early afternoon..

ski life as seen through the forest in Kitzbühel, Austria

Interested in heading to St.Moritz soon? Fancy a match of snow polo? Stay tuned to our Reviews section for insider-reveals of the best restaurants, exclusive events, and a guide to the slopes of Edgadin. 

And we're just getting started. After the event we'll publish our  editorial-reveal where  you'll discover how to spend your multi-evening stay in St.Moritz - spoiled with plush amenities, alpine vistas, and full-spa access.

snow polo horses take a break between games in the mountains of Austria

It's a horses life...

The polo ponies are priority-one here and their majestic stables were the first installation for the tournament's spectacular infrastructure set up - imagine oversized white linens bundled together, hanging like curtains to mark each stall. Left to gently blow in the snow-speckled breeze between chukkas, it's safe to say the horses are well taken care of here. But the stables are not the only tenting to write home about...

snow polo teams Cartier and badrutts at the st. Moritz World Cup

The VIP tent  (which officially opened its flaps on day one of the tournament) is a sight to behold. Though general admission to the game is always free outside; inside access comes at a cost but for those who enjoy the finer things in life, it's an easy one to justify. Imagine access to premium stands enhanced by champagne showers (thanks to official sponsor Perrier-Jouët.  

As can be expected, tantilizing and delectable morsels are abundant here as celebrity chefs demonstrate their prowess during scheduled cook-offs. Within moments, it becomes difficult to imagine life before snow polo in St.Moritz.

_3590780.jpg

CORFU MEETS CZECH...


Tucked into the hillside of north-western Corfu, beer connoisseurs will notice a modest, organic microbrewery. And, should they find themselves in its midst come late September/early October, they'll be treated to a festival quite unlike any other.

CORFU MEETS CZECH...


Tucked into the hillside of north-western Corfu, beer connoisseurs will notice a modest, organic microbrewery. And, should they find themselves in its midst come late September/early October, they'll be treated to a festival quite unlike any other.

Jamie the Hotel Blogr at Travlr Blog gets to know the mayor of Corfu and his fellow beer aficionado at the Corfu Beer Festival in Arillas. Her beverage of choice? The 'Real Ale'.

Jamie the Hotel Blogr at Travlr Blog gets to know the mayor of Corfu and his fellow beer aficionado at the Corfu Beer Festival in Arillas. Her beverage of choice? The 'Real Ale'.

Something incredible happens in Corfu during the fall. In a quaint, all but forgotten beach town to the north-east corner of the island, a small brewery with a big mission celebrates all things Corfu. The Corfu Beer Fest inspires young and old, local and foreigner, host (Corfu Beer) and guest (brewers from the Czech in 2017) alike by celebrating the finer things in life.

What's that you ask?  It's that all things organic and sustainable. It's tradition meets craft. And it all comes together to make for an integral, pride-filled pint.

trivago has a blog for travel in greece called room 5

This year we paired up with our buddies from trivago's Room5 inspirational digi-mag. In the evenings we talked travel, hotel search, and the best of Greece. Read their Corfu Beer Fest coverage here (in Greek).

bartender fills a pitcher of corfu beer at coprfu beer fest

Corfu Beer is a microbrewery delivering a million liters of beer per year through the use of high-quality, locally sourced ingredients that are organic and handeled with care. So much so, that the beer need not be, nor is it, filtered or pasteurized. In fact, the active yeasts are left to do their thing, making it all the more enjoyable to drink. 

greek food at corfu beer fest
_3child watches traditional greek dancers in corfu
traditional corfiot dancers at the corfu beer fest
Greek girls don’t twerk, they Tsifteteli ;)
— Greek Gateway
bartender at corfu beer fest

The Corfu Beer Fest celebrates all of Corfu, and the island's businesses work together in the name of sustainability, demonstrating a cohesion quite unlike anything we've seen before.

Attend and you're likely to notice that the guest brewers also come from a different country each year, typically those with a rich-beer culture.

Joining their ranks are master chefs, bartenders, and tradesmen; making for a rich multi-cultural experience that delivers a sense of solidarity among serious gastronomes pan-europe. In 2017 Corfu paired with Czechia. In 2018, the emerald island will open its mash tuns to a select bunch of English micro-brewers.

travel czechia brochures

With a movement in favour of sustainability, Corfu Beer doesn't just want to bring fine suds to the people, rather they want to impart a new way of life on the Grecians of today, their friends, and visitors of tomorrow.

The festival is further characterised by its numerous pre-parties, symposiums, and competitions.

Not to mention, the after-parties which continue to impress guests with a penchant for fine ale and a heaping helping of European culture. 

To do this, they've teamed up with some of the biggest organizations, personalities, and musicians to make the festival bigger and better each year.

 

jamie patterson von richtofen and matt chojnacki in traditional corfiot dress

This year we were able to sport traditional Corfiot dress thanks to the island's Cultural Institute: embracing corfu in mind, body, and soul.

dancers at corfu beer fest in arillas

Come in the early evening (8:00-9:00 PM) to witness the traditional dances of Corfiots and their guests. A favourite among the local collection of Yaiyas (grandmothers), though many foreigners deem this to be a must see as well.

czech traditional dancers at corfu beer fest

In 2017, men and women from Czechia joined Corfu as the honoured guests. Performances began with dancing, and concluded with traditional music playing from the brewery's rooftop into the wee hours (invite only). Throughout the festival food tastings, handywork, and travel tips on the best of Czechia were provided by their cultural ambassadors steps from the main tent.

czech woman makes traditional dolls at corfu beer fest

Falling even more in love with this Ionian island? We don't blame you, it can't be helped. Check out the unique restaurants, hotels, and attractions that further define the island here (click link and scroll down).

_3580472.jpg

ENJOY The Tranquility of Rural Belgium


A regal Limburg farmstead has been reimagined. Discover Kamerijck B&B, a modern day bastion of organic agro-tourism in the heart of Belgium. Call it home as you discover your more playful side: picking apples, frolicking through fields, and indulging poolside.

ENJOY The Tranquility of Rural Belgium


A regal Limburg farmstead has been reimagined. Discover Kamerijck B&B, a modern day bastion of organic agro-tourism in the heart of Belgium. Call it home as you discover your more playful side: picking apples, frolicking through fields, and indulging poolside.

Peaceful. Elegant. ENDURING.

Welcome to a 17th century Belgian Hesbaye square farmhouse.

Aside from the working farm, the surrounding landscape, fields, and parks are full of character and open to guests for leisurely strolls. Fancy a picnic? Of course you do.

Aside from the working farm, the surrounding landscape, fields, and parks are full of character and open to guests for leisurely strolls. Fancy a picnic? Of course you do.

main dining room at kamerijck

Kamerijck B&B, in the easternmost portion of Belgian Flanders, is a peaceful-historical haven just outside of the nearby towns. The centuries-old brick-and-ivy facade, barn-wood floors, and regal bed-treatments leave guests in awe. High-cielinged rooms have been designed with both a nod to tradition and the comforts of modern luxuries in mind. Full baths, oversized-glass-showers, and plush towels can be expected. Not to mention the farm-fresh produce that defines the breakfast offerings each morning.

Click on the photo below for a sneak-peek of life at Kamerijck.

Once belonging to the Prince Regent, Baron de Chokier, lodging ranges from Standard to Comfort rooms: each sporting a unique style and luxurious decor. The French oak boards and panelling along with the minimalistic single tapestry of the Standard rooms are elegant and understand. In contrast, a pair of rain boots can often be found steps from the entrance to these first-floor lodgings. The antique painting-and lantern-adorned walls of the oversized Comfort rooms above allude help fill the generously-portioned quarters; further defining a country residence that the royals would be proud to call their own, even to this day.

kamerijck in Belgium is a fully functional farm and tastefully decorated bed and breakfast

Guests of the farm's bed and breakfast are treated to an array of farm-fresh products in the mint-green and fireplace-clad dining room. In warmer months many opt to take breakfast on the adjoining patio by the rose bushes. Aged, salty cheeses, home-made preserves, airy bread, and a variety of preserves are onto the beginning. In the evening, you'll often find this nook outside the dining hall made all the more cozy as guests lounge in light sweaters, taking in the last rays of sunlight whilst sipping on the farms own Belgian Ale, Baron de Chokier (pictured to the bottom right). 

apples on a tree ready for picking in rural Belgium (Limburg)

Snuggled in the midst of pear farms and apple orchards by the hamlet of Gingelom (South Limburg); Brussels, Liege, and Maastricht are all within reach (45 minutes or less drive). The Kamerijck farmstead also boasts proximity to the humble Bink Brewery, numerous bike paths, and the farm's De Chokier ale house. Visitors can take advantage of the farm in the spring by joining in on harvest activities and tours as well, an educational endeavour suitable for friends and family, young, and old alike.

belgian countryside and farm home kamerijck bed and breakfast
belgian craft beer from organic farm and bed and breakfast kamerijck
Travlr Blog's Matty relaxes poolside at Kamerijck taking in the last of the warm winds before Autumn was in full force. Serenity is top of mind here, in an area that looks more like an Alex Coleville paining   

Travlr Blog's Matty relaxes poolside at Kamerijck taking in the last of the warm winds before Autumn was in full force. Serenity is top of mind here, in an area that looks more like an Alex Coleville paining 

 

farm fields of Belgium

Photography and Styling Jamie @HotelBlogr

To reveal more off the beaten path destinations near Belgian Limburg, check out “Discover Holland” here.