The Essential Style Guide to Melbourne’s Spring Racing Carnival

The epicentre of spring racing in Australia, Melbourne’s Flemington Racecourse is where haute-couture and horseracing collide. Known for being as much about the fashion as it is about the fillies, each race day during Flemington’s Spring Carnival has its own set of rules when it comes to looking fashionable on the field. Whether you’ve got trackside seats at ‘The Race that Stops the Nation’ or you’re planning a ladies lunch for Oaks Day, you’re guaranteed to be best in show with our definitive style guide to Flemington’s Spring Carnival race days.


Emirates Melbourne Cup Day

Official Flower: Yellow Rose
While race days at Flemington are always a buttoned-up affair, Melbourne Cup Day is the one time of year where avant-garde fashion meets trackside elegance. Women should take advantage of the over-the-top atmosphere and sport bold patterns and bright colours with an oversized hat or headpiece to match, while men are encouraged to add flair to their suits with interesting prints and Bond-style bowties.

AAMI Derby Day

Official Flower: Blue Cornflower
Dating back to 1855, the AAMI Derby Day is the oldest of the Spring Racing Carnival events, and its longstanding traditions are best respected with classic, monochromatic attire. While the day’s flower may be a bright, cornflower blue, men and women should stick to tailored, black and white ensembles with elegant accessories kept to a minimum.

Crown Oaks Day

Official Flower: Pink Rose
Traditionally known as ‘Ladies Day’, this popular racing event still sees plenty of gents take to the track for an afternoon of betting, drinking and socialising in style. For a sophisticated look, channel the femininity of the day with pastel hues inspired by the official flower, the pink rose. While brighter colours are still appropriate, men and women should avoid black and navy tones, as these are more suited to Melbourne Cup Day and Derby Day events.


Emirates Stakes Day

Official Flower: Red Rose
The perfect race day for punters more interested in horses than high-fashion, Emirates Stakes Day is all about laid-back style and trackside comfort. Trade the sky-high stilettos and double breasted suits the rest of the Spring Racing Carnival is known for and opt for loose fitting dresses and lightly tailored jackets instead.

See why this prestigious annual event is coveted by sports enthusiasts and socialites alike with a stay at Radisson on Flagstaff Gardens in Melbourne. Enviably located just five kilometres from Flemington Racecourse, our hotel in Melbourne is the perfect base to prepare for all of your Spring Racing Carnival festivities. Plan your stay today.

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