For hundreds of years “The Season” was an annual relay of balls and dinners attended by the social elite, a chance for the aristocracy and gentry to meet and be seen. The twentieth century brought some dramatic changes to the way in which The Season is conducted, but there are still some fixtures to the English calendar that make summer in England unique. Picnics, sport and high fashion combine to form our inimitable Summer Season.
The British obsession with all things equestrian means we love a day at the races. For pageantry, colour and outstanding millinery Royal Ascot can’t be beaten. As if exhilarating racing isn’t enough, high fashion, the finest cuisine, an abundance of champagne and one or two Royals have made Ascot a high point of the season for generations.
Dressing appropriately is a requirement, but also part of the fun. Top hats and the most elegant of dresses mark this occasion as uniquely British and utterly unforgettable. As well as Ascot there’s Goodwood – arguably one of the most beautiful racetracks in the world. Against the dramatic backdrop of the Sussex Downs, Glorious Goodwood is a less formal occasion than Royal Ascot but by no means less chic.
Whether you’re enjoying a delectable picnic or afternoon tea in their charmingly English Secret Garden, let the Pimms flow before having a flutter or three on some of the world’s finest thoroughbreds.
If you like your equestrian sports then be sure to attend at least one polo match this season. Pack a picnic to enjoy pre-match, and even if you don’t know your chukkas from your bumps, the action and high energy won’t fail to entertain.
The world class sport continues at Henley Royal Regatta. This is the best opportunity of the season for the gentlemen to outshine the ladies in the fashion stakes. Panamas, club blazers, ties and socks brighten the banks of the Thames as spectators gather to support the rowers for over 200 races over five days of thrilling competition.
Glyndebourne is only a short journey from London but once you’re there it feels a world away. The unique combination of the South Downs at sunset and outstanding opera make Glyndebourne Festival one of the most romantic events of the Season. There’s much more to this occasion than the evening’s performance. Arrive in the afternoon and you can take tea on the terrace, explore the grounds and then picnic in evening dress. Watch the sun go down before enjoying some of the world’s most beautiful and celebrated opera.
None of these events can fail to entertain; each is a chance to escape the everyday and to make the most of summer in Britain. So gather a group of friends, choose your outfits and make the most of the excuse for a long weekend or a week’s break. We have lots of properties close to the season’s events, take a look at www.exclusiveuse.com