With things very quiet on the tennis front after Roger's withdrawal from Rotterdam and Dubai due to a knee injury I thought I'd do something a little different on the blog. A while ago I posted a picture of the only grass court in Paris which proved popular on Facebook and Twitter so I thought I'd track down some of the world's most stunning tennis courts. My only requirement was that they have to be accessible to the general public to have a hit on. One of them on this list is even free!
Check the best 14 I could find below:
1. Gstaad Palace, Gstaad, Switzerland
No surprises that the first one is in Switzerland and the home of the Swiss Tennis Open in Gstaad. Not sure you'll find a better backdrop to play tennis on than the Swiss Alps.
2. British Embassy, Paris, France
This court takes the title as being the only grass court in Paris. It's located at the British Embassy and Amélie Mauresmo used to practice there before Wimbledon. Can the public access it? Debatable.
3. Positano, Il San Pietro di Positano, Italy
Located on the Amalfi Coast this court is in the grounds of the Il San Pietro di Positano hotel. €500-€1000 per night. Is it worth it? 😀
4. Banff Rocky Mountain Resort, Banff, Alberta, Canada
I don't think you can get much better surroundings than the Rocky Mountains and the courts at the Banff Rocky Mountain Resort look spectacular. Just make sure you go in summer. Judging by some of the reviews it might be better to stay in a neighbouring hotel too and sneak on 😆
5. Mauna Kea Beach Hotel Seaside Tennis Club, Kamuela, Hawaii
Seems like all the best looking courts are in hotel grounds and on the coastline north of Kauna‘oa in Hawaii sits the Mauna Kea Seaside Tennis Club which is part of the Marriott Chain of hotels. Who could resist the urge to fire a ball off into the sea?
6. Peter Island Resort and Spa, Peter Island, British Virgin Islands
Peter Island is the largest privately owned island British Virgin Islands and can only be accessed by boat or helicopter. The hotel boasts grass courts surrounded by palm trees and an ocean breeze. Not bad ;
7. La Cavalerie Tennis Club, Paris, France
Just a few steps from the Eiffel Tower you'll find the La Cavalerie Tennis Club. This court is located on the seventh floor of an Art-Deco Building built in 1924 that has an Aston Martin dealership on the ground floor. The actual tennis court is situated in a wooden hall with a honeycomb style arch roof. From the picture it looks like the court is never ending – will it be hard to keep the ball in the court?
8. Charles City, Iowa All Iowa Lawn Tennis Club, Iowa, United States
This court is located on the Kuhn Family Farm is Iowa. It was created inn 2003, when Mark Kuhn, a fan of Wimbledon since listening to it on the radio in 1962, decided to carve one out of the corn farm on a former cattle feed lot. Best of all? It's free to play on — all you need to do is reserve a court via email.
9. Bio- und Wellnesshotel Stanglwirt, Going am Wilden Kaiser, Austria
Another court with a breathtaking backdrop this time in Austria at the base of the Wilder Kaiser mountain range which is just outside Kitzbühel.
10. Rhode Island International Tennis Hall of Fame, Newport, United States
The grass courts of Rhode Island hold the Hall of Fame Tennis Championships every year which is an ATP 250 event. Up until 1915 they held the US tennis championships which is now the US Open played at Flushing Meadows. The courts are available to play on for members or guests priced at $80 for 30 minutes.
11. Bunabhainneadar Tennis Court, Isle of Harris, Scotland
The most remote court in the British Isles located in the Outer Hebrides. It's owned by a charitable foundation and run by tennis coach Mike Briggs. Not sure how many days per year you'll get that are ‘playable' but there's a wooden pavilion should it rain.
12. Serengeti National Park, Singita Sabora Camp, Tanzania
The only court in the Serengeti National Park. I don't think I'd manage too many sets playing in that heat but sure looks good.
13. Grand Hyatt Denver's Skycourt, Denver, Colorado, United States
Dubbed the “Skycourt” this court overlooks the Denver skyline and also has a running track around the edge. Denver apparently boasts 300 days of sunshine per year so finding a time to play should be pretty easy.
14. IJburg Tennis Club, Amsterdam, Netherlands
The clubhouse is the most interesting part of this court, designed by Dutch architects MVRDV on one of the artificial islands outside Amsterdam. What would usually be a flat roof has seen the front of it pulled down to ground level, with the rear central point stretched upwards to a height of 7 metres. The terraced space has seating for up to 200 spectators.
A few others that look cool but don't quite make my ‘Top Picks'.
Let me know your favourite in the comments and if I've missed a tennis court that should be added to this list do let me know!