Aiken gained a reputation during the first hundred years as "a place for a splendid time to be had." Those words reign true today. Once a summer retreat for Charlestonians escaping the threat of malaria, Aiken became a Winter Colony during the late 1800's. The "grand health resort" had the perfect climate and a healing combination of warm dry air scented with pine and spring water. Equestrians began bringing horses for pleasure and grandiose cottages and stables sprang up everywhere. Polo is played on Sunday afternoons just as it was in 1882. A two hundred year old ambiance is embraced by Aiken residents and visitors alike. Amidst the bustling downtown area is the envied model of land preservation at its finest.