Lure of Oriental Park: Racing of Cuba Carried on in a Real Garden of Flowers, Daily Racing Form, 1924-12-10


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LURE OF ORIENTAL PARK 1 Racing of Cuba Carried On in a Eeal Garden of Flowers. Fascinating: Beauties of Havana Mingling of the Orient. "Lavish in Its Scheme " J of Color and Form. j "HAVANA. Cuba. Dec 9. The thorough- 1 bred racer receives from the elite of Havana ! whole-hearted tribute. The president joins in ! this homage to the turf. In Oriental Parks grandstand, facing tha I judges, also the spot -where a royal palm grows through the roof of the timers stand, j is the box, railed and furnished in mahogany i and walnut used by the leader of the Cuban f Republic, his own family, including the mem- bevrs of his immediate staff. Over the chair of the executive floats the flag of Cuba. j From this elevated position one may. vision the most fertile island in the -world. Havana, city of charm, the name of which. Indian in origin, conjures up a historical panorama of four centuries crowned with tragedy, pathes, adventure, cruel crimes and noble sacrifice on , whose rapidly moving canvas, fate has printed every form of human effort from the i time of the landing of Columbus to the day of j the Sfboney suicide, who preferred death to 1 slarery. CITT OF ItAETBOW HUE. Hiding to the plant of the Cuba-America i Jockey Club imagination is stirred to the depths by fascinating leauty. Havana is the city of the rainbow hue. Her houser. thick -walled, ponderous structures, built of stone, . "brick or concrete, are plastered within and -without with the smoothest possible finish, then tinted in shell pink, cream, gaslight green., lilac and magenta predominating. .Houses of two stcries each, with excep- tiomally high ceiling, flat roofs with ornamental parapets, are almost universal. All -windows, as well as doorr. wide and tali, run tD the floor. These are protected frcm intrusion by beautiful irooa grill work. It is not beauty -of design or decoration that gives to thic city of more than a half TOiUion people its pictnre3iTueness. It is xather In that delightful mingling of a semi-oriental presence, lavish in its scheme of form and colon, Its quaint, medieval nooks :and corners- huge, thick, polished walnut, cedar and mahogany doors with brass knock-exs,- doors wide enough whin open to admit m. coach and four-in-hand- Its grim, grey lorts of the sixteenth century. Its walls tur-xeted and capped as in days of old are here. In Havana," at Oriental Park, all about, one cannot escape this Tivid reminder of cahruries gone, the picture unfaded in modern surroundings, with nature adding the -Kupreme touch of artistry. Oriental Tark. possessing so marry muring features, is a ssrarcE of amazement to jui American. The main entrance presents a landscape and floral display, probably without duplicate In point o fantastic artistry. Everywhere is evergreen, with the poinsetta flaming in contrast Rossis run riot, in truth every plant of charming color characteristic of Cubas exceptional climate, lloyal palms :and towering bamboos sway In the breeze Tolling from the sparkling Gulf of Mexico, not far away. It is all a floral paradise in-.describiible in its rich beauty. BEAUTIFUL CLUBHOUSE. Ths clubhouse, finest of all ths equipment of Oriental Park, is the Mecca of Cubas aristocracy, the scene of many of its most elaborate functions. It is m exaggeration to say that mot even the Jockey Club of Buenos Aires :surpat;sc Havana wliea It comes to the Oriental Park clubhouse, m front of which is :Bpace for 1,200 motor cars. The membership of this club is composed of the social eclat .of ths ciiy., including ths president, the cab-3nat ministers, ths representatives of other nations in Cuba and every multi-millionaire of the island, so many that il is difficult to count them. Here fashion is on -parade. Fortunes are spent on costumes. .Make no mistake about the rivalry in gowns and jewels. It is all a spectacle of splendor. Such was the picture on the opening of the clubhouse roof garden, a dinner-dance given by ths Cuba-America Jockey Club in honor of Cuban society. The clubhouse, redecorated, its roof enclosed in glass, was aglow. Morrelli. employed by H. D Brown, had superintended the floral arrangement This man, formerly florist to Italys king, employed on this occasion the :tame lavishness he would have used in the royal palace. On the ivory colored columns lie had entwined 3,000 red, white and blue auiniature electric lights, almost hidden undei ropes of asparagus fern. Suspended from the ceatbrg were lanterns. Japanese in design, rich in color and adornment- Poinsettias blazed everywhere, this deep red predominating the color scheme. The tables held thirty-six center pieces, red roses tumbled into great silver bowls, every rose picked from the Jockey Club grounds. All typified tropical Cuba. Naddys orchestra from the Biltmore In New York, half concealed behind palms, played until 3 oclock in the morning. Ths breeze from the Gulf swayed the Cuba and American flags. The dancers had a great tile mirror-like surface to swing to the rythm of jazz and Spanish fandangoes. How the Cubans can dance! It was perfection, everything. The first of a series of dinner-dances a I Havanas race course for the 1925 season was, indeed, brilliant.

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