Prince William, Kate charm California polo set

Sat Jul 9, 2011 5:48pm EDT
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By Alex Dobuzinskis

SANTA BARBARA, California (Reuters) - With transatlantic humor and effortless glamour, Britain's Prince William and his new wife Kate charmed the deep-pocketed polo set on Saturday to raise funds for charity on their three-day visit to California.

The prince will later play in the polo match to benefit his, Kate and brother Harry's foundation. William warned the polo patrons he would be back to collect the silver cup.

"I am not a good loser," the prince said at a pre-match reception at a century-old polo club in the wealthy coastal city of Santa Barbara.

On Day Two of their first U.S. visit, the newly married Duke and Duchess of Cambridge easily slipped into the California lifestyle in a relaxed, glamorous and sporty manner. It is her first trip to the United States.

The duchess, admired for her fashion even before marrying William in London, wore a silver and marble gray hand-painted chinoiserie silk dress by Jenny Packham, while the duke sported a blue blazer over a white shirt and trousers.

The tickets for the match cost between $400 and $4,000 and proceeds will go to the foundation's causes -- military veterans and their families and sustainable development.

William peppered his brief remarks with humor -- the kind that appeals to an American crowd.

"The prospect of being able to let loose this afternoon is wonderful for me. That is what sport is all about, being it polo, football -- sorry, I mean soccer -- or whatever your preferred sport is," he said with comic effect.   Continued...

<p>Former U.S. Ambassador to Jamaica Glen Holden (L) attends a charity event in support of the American Friends of The Foundation of Prince William and Prince Harry with Britain's Prince William (R) and his wife Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, at the Santa Barbara Polo and Racquet Club in Santa Barbara, California July 9, 2011. REUTERS/Alex Gallardo</p>