What better way to spend a 22nd birthday than with hats, horses, good friends and a bit too much champagne (is there such thing?).
As much as I adore horses and horse-riding, I know next to nothing about the racing world. My only betting tactic for the day was to trust the Irish, as they seem pretty au fait with producing race winners. They did not let me down, as I backed two winners and broke even. An excuse for more champagne? Of course!
The competition is just as hot off the race course, as the ladies and gents don their best outfits in a bid to be the best dressed. When it comes to the style stakes, Royal Ascot really is the jewel in the crown, so the pressure was on to find the perfect ensemble. I turned to my favourite high-street designer, Ted Baker, who did not disappoint. I am rather enchanted by Ted’s 2017 summer prints, and knew the minute I saw this dress that it would be my number for the big day. When it came to the hat, I was rather shy and opted for a quaint pastel pink fascinator. Although, meeting Brazilian hat designer Graciella Starling in the enclosure, who was exhibiting an entrancing, 2 feet tall, diamond studded, feathery white crown has inspired me to go for a more elaborate head-piece next time.
This year’s Royal Ascot fell on the hottest June week in over 50 years. After the sunshine must come the rain, and of course, we got caught in it. Luckily, the downpour came during the after-party, which meant hundreds of suited and booted racegoers became soaked while belting out You Got The Love. Oddly, it was the perfect end to a wonderful day.
Windsor boasts so much classic beauty and seems the perfect place to stay for a weekend away in the English countryside. I instantly fell for the charm of this quintessentially English town as we strolled through the grounds of Windsor Castle, wondered from pub to pub, and enjoyed a rather hungover row up the Thames.
If by magic I could have postponed turning 22 by another year, I would have jumped at the chance. 21 sounds so much more youthful and I wanted to hold on to that for as long as I possibly could. But, ultimately, I would not have wanted to spend my birthday weekend in any other way and cannot wait to return again next year. I feel a tradition starting…