Vow And Declare took all the glory yesterday evening at Flemington Racecourse, the Australian-bred horse winning the 2019 Melbourne Cup in a thrilling finish.

There was plenty of glamour and entertainment to be had in Rotorua as the race was run, with well-dressed punters watching on, drinks in hand.

At the Melbourne Cup party at Ambrosia Restaurant and Bar in Eat Streat, general manager Anne-Marie Kemplay said everyone was really getting into the event and the good weather had helped with the turnout.

"Everyone has made an effort, with their glad rags on, so just a nice chilled atmosphere all round."


She said some people had gone the extra mile, fascinators and all.

As for the race, and who picked which horse, Kemplay said she didn't hear anyone let out a massive scream at the finish.

"But they might have just been celebrating quietly."

Rotorua Lakes councillor Tania Tapsell was there and said it was a great, lively afternoon with a lot of people stopping in for after-work drinks.

She was judging a Fashion in the Fields competition.

"We had some amazing effort put into outfits this year, and it's great to see people getting amongst it."

Tapsell said there was a "real buzz" as soon as the race started.

"And with such a close finish, everyone was ecstatic."