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Polo, Mansions, and Chauffeured Transportation

Published: January 2, 2018

There was a show in the 1980's and 1990's hosted by Robin Leach called "Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous", and it shamelessly promoted lifestyles of the very rich. We figured it's a brand new, and we should set some goals for 2018, so why not talk about some fun things that the rich do, so we can use it as motivation in the coming year.

3 fun activities only the fabulously rich can afford

We all have our hobbies and our favorite activities, but sometimes it can be fun to see how the other half lives. While your hobbies may give you a break from the grind of work or school, the truly wealthy have hobbies that few could even dream of pursuing because of the fabulous costs associated with their pursuit. Let's take a look at three such activities that really break the bank.

Polo

It isn't called the sport of kings for nothing. Polo is played on horseback, so it should come as no surprise to anyone familiar with the onerous costs of equestrian pursuits that this is a very expensive activity. Club fees alone can be up to $8,000 per year and a horse that is bred and trained for the demands of the sport can cost $35,000 on the low end just to purchase. Add the budget for quality equipment and the costs to stable a horse and you have one extravagant hobby.

Ballroom dancing

While taking an occasional ballroom dancing lesson is not that expensive, if you actually want to break into it in a competitive sense you better be prepared to open your wallet. The budget expenses such as fees, lessons, and transportation for top performers can cost the dancer $100,000 per year of competition.

Mountain climbing

There are no shortage of mountains to climb for the thrill of it, or just for a little exercise. However, expeditions up the most challenging slopes will cost you. Often requiring employment of expert guides and even the establishment or maintenance of a base camp, expeditions up Mount Everest, K2 or the Matterhorn can cost over $11,000 per climber. Even a modest expedition can easily run the climber over $35,000 for a single trip.

Let's just sample their lifestyle

Whether you've lived in the area all your life or you're just visiting for the week, one of the best ways to get acquainted with New England and its history - while at the same time sampling the affluent lifestyle - is to tour any number of its historic mansions. Largely built during the post-Civil War Victorian Era and lovingly preserved, they offer a decadent step back in the past.

Here are three of the most impressive Victorian mansions in New England.

Lockwood-Mathews Mansion – Norwalk, CT

Built in 1864 and designated "America's First Chateau", this sprawling 62-room Victorian mansion is one of the most significant examples of Second Empire Style country homes in the country. Built with plumbing to accommodate hot and cold water, gas lighting, advanced ventilation, and a coal heating system that burned through a literal ton of coal per day, it was extremely technologically advanced for its time. It continued to be inhabited through the Great Depression, and was designated a public park in 1941 before earning the distinction of being named a National Historic Landmark in 1971.

Newport Mansions – Newport, RI

Stretching along the scenic Narragansett Bay are ten lavish summer "cottages" that housed the New York elite at the end of the nineteenth and start of the twentieth centuries. Fully outfitted in the Victorian architecture of the period, any one of the Newport Mansions is a fascinating day trip; visiting several of them provides a unique window into the lives of the wealthy at the turn of the twentieth century. For a taste of this luxury yourself, consider hiring a limo to transport you in style from one to another.

The Vanderbilt Mansion – Hyde Park, NY

Designated by the National Park Service as a National Historic Site, this former home of the Vanderbilt family is an exquisite example of American Beaux-Arts architecture. Built at the end of the eighteenth century, the Vanderbilt Mansion is one of the oldest Hudson River estates, housing the Vanderbilt family when they were not inhabiting their summer house in Newport. It provides a glimpse into the luxurious lives of American millionaires during the Gilded Age as well as insight into the increasing social stratification of the period.

To add the icing on top of the cake, why not have Sentinel Limousine drive you and some friends to any one of the mansions for the day. We've got great rates, and if you ask nicely, maybe your chauffeur will do their best Robin Leach impersonation, so you'll truly feel like you are in the lap of luxury for the day.