It’s hard to think about the need to exercise while on vacation, but finding something that is both fun and healthy means you can take advantage of a guilt-free activity – and what better way to tone those arms, work on your teamwork skills, and enjoy the Miami weather than play tennis? At the Crandon Tennis Center in Miami, you’ll find twenty-six courts – seven of which are lit for nighttime.
For tennis gurus, the breakdown is as follows: two red European clay courts, four green American clay courts, two grass courts, and eighteen hard courts. (For those who don’t know the difference, grass tends to dull a ball’s bounces and thus increase game speed, whereas clay creates higher bounces and slows it down; hard courts are fickle and somewhere in between. Wimbledon has always used grass, although as a playing surface it is harder to maintain, but the U.S. and Australian Opens both use hard courts. The French Open is played on clay.)
There’s also a full-service pro shop where you can get your racket re-strung and, of course, stock up on some tennis goodies. More importantly, the Crandon Park Beach is super close (if you don’t know what it looks like, just think of that beach calendar hanging in your cubicle). What could be better than a few morning tennis matches followed by an afternoon swim? Or, hey, an afternoon swim followed by a night match?
The Crandon Park Tennis Center hosts the Sony Ericsson Open every March (formerly known as the NASDAQ-100 Open and the Lipton International Players Championships). With over 300,000 visitors attending this year, the tournament is one of the biggest ones outside the Majors – i.e., the four named above that make up the Grand Slam.
The courts and shop are open from 8am until 9pm during the week and until 7pm on weekends. Crandon Park is in Key Biscayne, an easily accessible island just south of Miami Beach.