Where is the best tennis city in the world?

I agree with Florida being a great place. The pros usually have a place in South Florida for a reason. Tons of players, clay and hard courts. Prices for court fees and cost of living are reasonable. Most courts are properly maintained. Most have wind screens installed and nets with straps. Traffic is bearable in Palm Beach County area and you can drive 10 or 15 mins in any direction and find courts.
I've played on hard courts in South America and Thailand and the court surface is broke up and they don't apply very much sand to the top coat making you slide more, they are missing net straps. Played on red clay courts in Spain, Ecuador and Poland and they were all maintained well. I like a good balance of costs, availability, quality players and courts as well a well designed city with a good balance of parks and green space for exercising and South Florida ticks all the boxes. It does get really hot and humid but if you are Not an A/C queen, you will adapt and manage fine.
 
I would say Florida is the best State for tennis. California is way too expensive. I live in NW Ohio and tennis is almost non-existent.
Yea, here in the mid west, more people bowl, deer hunt, or snowmobile than play tennis!
I'm lucky, here in Fort Wayne there is a pretty active group of guys with whom I play, and a nice indoor club. Not to mention that it's the lowest cost of living of any city in the U.S.
I'm thinking about getting some lessons at the club to help my game. I love the change of seasons, but of course, outdoor tennis is not doable December through February or so. At least Indiana is warmer than back home in Michigan where I grew up ....
I think I'll have to swallow the bitter bit and start shelling out cash to play during late fall and winter.
 
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atatu

Legend
I agree with Florida being a great place. The pros usually have a place in South Florida for a reason. Tons of players, clay and hard courts. Prices for court fees and cost of living are reasonable. Most courts are properly maintained. Most have wind screens installed and nets with straps. Traffic is bearable in Palm Beach County area and you can drive 10 or 15 mins in any direction and find courts.
I've played on hard courts in South America and Thailand and the court surface is broke up and they don't apply very much sand to the top coat making you slide more, they are missing net straps. Played on red clay courts in Spain, Ecuador and Poland and they were all maintained well. I like a good balance of costs, availability, quality players and courts as well a well designed city with a good balance of parks and green space for exercising and South Florida ticks all the boxes. It does get really hot and humid but if you are Not an A/C queen, you will adapt and manage fine.
I always wanted to retire in Florida and have access to clay courts, then I spent a week in Orlando for the Mixed 9.0 Nationals a couple of years ago. Let's just say I couldn't wait get out of there...
 

jrmitch21

New User
I always wanted to retire in Florida and have access to clay courts, then I spent a week in Orlando for the Mixed 9.0 Nationals a couple of years ago. Let's just say I couldn't wait get out of there...
Big difference in Orlando and the rest of Florida. You need to head down south to Miami/Ft. Lauderdale or Florida West Coast Tampa/Bradenton, etc...

Love the T-6 in your profile pic. My dad was active warbird‘er with his T-6 and Harvard until he, gone west Burro - QB
 

jrmitch21

New User
How does South Florida compare to San Diego in terms of tennis community and available tennis courts? Heat doesn't bother me. Thanks
Quantity wise, quick google search shows San Diego having 200+ tennis courts, South Florida having; Miami 250+, Ft. Lauderdale 340+, Boca Raton 300+, etc...) so for quantity, there are a lot more available courts in the South Florida area than in San Diego as the area is so much bigger. There is a reason many ATP/WTA pros call S.FL their home either off-season or all year round.

I prefer the S.FL community over the San Diego community, but I haven't played in the San Diego area since the late 90s I am sure it has changed a lot since then.

Heat is not what gets the people, it is the humidity but if you can stand that or get used to it, it is top-notch in my opinion.
 

WildVolley

Legend
Quantity wise, quick google search shows San Diego having 200+ tennis courts, South Florida having; Miami 250+, Ft. Lauderdale 340+, Boca Raton 300+, etc...) so for quantity, there are a lot more available courts in the South Florida area than in San Diego as the area is so much bigger. There is a reason many ATP/WTA pros call S.FL their home either off-season or all year round.
...
I generally agree with you that South Florida is a great place for tennis if you can take the weather. But as discussed earlier in this thread, the reason that so many ATP/WTA pros live in SFl over SoCal has nothing to do with tennis, weather, or court availability. The harsh reality is that it is primarily due to taxes. California has a top state tax rate of 13.3% and Florida has no state income tax. If I were a touring pro, I'd definitely choose Florida.

Edit: I guess it may also have a little to do with weather. The off-season for pro tennis players is winter, and that's when Florida is nice for tennis.
 
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sureshs

Bionic Poster
So is it a positive feedback loop? More pros choose to live in FL, hence more training facilities like IMG, Saddlebrook, Evert, USTA NTC Orlando, and in turn, more pros again? Thus creating an ecosystem of students, touring pros, teaching pros and sports medicine specialists?
 

bobleenov1963

Professional
I generally agree with you that South Florida is a great place for tennis if you can take the weather. But as discussed earlier in this thread, the reason that so many ATP/WTA pros live in SFl over SoCal has nothing to do with tennis, weather, or court availability. The harsh reality is that it is primarily due to taxes. California has a top state tax rate of 13.3% and Florida has no state income tax. If I were a touring pro, I'd definitely choose Florida.
South Florida is a great place to hang out between November and April. It is brutal in the summer. I used to travel for work in Naples and Miami during the summer and it was just brutal. I avoid South Florida between May and October. Not my cup of tea. YMMV
 

jrmitch21

New User
I generally agree with you that South Florida is a great place for tennis if you can take the weather. But as discussed earlier in this thread, the reason that so many ATP/WTA pros live in SFl over SoCal has nothing to do with tennis, weather, or court availability. The harsh reality is that it is primarily due to taxes. California has a top state tax rate of 13.3% and Florida has no state income tax. If I were a touring pro, I'd definitely choose Florida.

Edit: I guess it may also have a little to do with weather. The off-season for pro tennis players is winter, and that's when Florida is nice for tennis.
Tax benefit is always a plus :)
 

jrmitch21

New User
So is it a positive feedback loop? More pros choose to live in FL, hence more training facilities like IMG, Saddlebrook, Evert, USTA NTC Orlando, and in turn, more pros again? Thus creating an ecosystem of students, touring pros, teaching pros and sports medicine specialists?
The Cicle of Tennis
 

joe sch

Legend
For seniors in FL The Villages which has approx 50 courts in 32 sq miles.
Most are at recreation centers and country clubs which pack the area between the homes, restaurants and shopping centers.
 

stoxtrader

New User
I disagree with those who say Tampa is a bad town for tennis players. Tampa is way better than Miami for recreational tennis players. Especially if you want a pickup game. It's too hard to get a court in Miami. You have to wait an hour just to play for an hour at the public courts. Maybe it's easier to get a court on Key Biscayne, but you have to pay a toll just to get on the island. It's pretty isolated from most of Miami. In Tampa there are free public courts where you can play on for 3+ hours at a time after work. Miami is also a lot windier. Both cities have a rainy season (with Miami's usually starting about 2-3 weeks earlier and finishing about 2-3 weeks later) and you can get rained out a lot in those months as there aren't any public indoor tennis courts in FL.
 

stoxtrader

New User
could be the lack of state income tax too in FL...similar tax avoidance benefits as Monaco in Europe.
Lack of income tax is the primary reason I live in FL over CA. CA's marginal income tax brackets are 8% by $45k and 9.3% by $57k so you're getting slammed even on a typical middle class salary. Cost of living is cheaper in FL too, but not what it was 10 years ago. Tampa prices have soared in the past few years. No doubt San Diego has the best weather in the 48 for tennis though. SoCal is really the only part of the 48 with good tennis weather year round. Tampa has 5x the average rainfall and most of that is during the dreaded 4 month window we're headed into where I go north lol.
 

LaZeR

Professional
I disagree with those who say Tampa is a bad town for tennis players.
@stoxtrader those posts on Tampa are regarding FINDING PEOPLE to PLAY WITH, & if you live way out in the suburbs, of which there are many in the greater Tampa bay area. Let me know if u wanna play...
 
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stoxtrader

New User
@stoxtrader those posts re Tampa is regarding FINDING PEOPLE to PLAY WITH. Let me know if u wanna play...
I'm only a 3.5 if I'm being honest, don't know what level you're at. I also left Tampa for the summer and will be back in October (unless I go to Fort Lauderdale, I'm deciding between Tampa and there, definitely not Miami). Hopefully, I'll be a 4.0 when I return lol. I did the last HCC ladder league. I played frequently at Cal and Riverfront. There's people to play and available courts. Atlanta is probably the best tennis town, but their winters are too cold for me and I'm not paying no 5.375% state income tax.
 

LaZeR

Professional
I'm only a 3.5 if I'm being honest, don't know what level you're at. I also left Tampa for the summer and will be back in October (unless I go to Fort Lauderdale, I'm deciding between Tampa and there, definitely not Miami). Hopefully, I'll be a 4.0 when I return lol. I did the last HCC ladder league. I played frequently at Cal and Riverfront. There's people to play and available courts. Atlanta is probably the best tennis town, but their winters are too cold for me and I'm not paying no 5.375% state income tax.
OK lemme know when you get back. In the FL heat & sun I play around 3.5 anyway.

On another note, you should SAVE lotsa moola $$$$ choosing Tampa over Miami & Ft Lauderdale, but east coast beaches are more accessible.
 

FloridaAG

Professional
OK lemme know when you get back. In the FL heat & sun I play around 3.5 anyway.

On another note, you should SAVE lotsa moola $$$$ choosing Tampa over Miami & Ft Lauderdale, but east coast beaches are more accessible.
Cost of living and housing especially is lower but depending on field, income can much higher
 

FIRETennis

Professional
The Monte Carlo Country club (MCCC) (technically on French territory) is an interesting place. Bar none one of the best views on the planet for tennis.
Average member age is like 65+ so for higher level singles it's hard to find partners. You can't book courts, it's first come first dibs on courts while you have a "cafe" on the terrace.
There are also a couple Plexipaves used by the pros mostly in addition to the red clay courts. Center court is obviously amazing and you better be on hand grease terms with the maitre d' to book it.
€40 gets you a day pass for all you can play tennis, gym and pool (if you have a buddy as a member).
All the pros have hitting partners and are not interested in hitting with 'randoms'.
The local club pros are 50+, smoke, don't move but could still bagel most. They charge €80-€100/hr.

The rest of the South of France is also great for tennis. Lots of facilities, great weather (not year round though Nov-Mar is not great, rainy and not a lot of indoor options).
The French Tennis Federation and ITF "Seniors" run hundreds, if not thousands of tournaments all year throughout the country with a very clever (and bureaucratically complex rating system) for rec. players with good prize money even. Some higher level French guys live off those earnings. There was even a tourist guide blog that was offering help setting up summers in France to play those tours IIRC.
Great base to drive/fly through Europe too.
 

stoxtrader

New User
OK lemme know when you get back. In the FL heat & sun I play around 3.5 anyway.

On another note, you should SAVE lotsa moola $$$$ choosing Tampa over Miami & Ft Lauderdale, but east coast beaches are more accessible.
Will do. I basically play at night, unless it's a cold winter weekend day lol. I'm considering Fort Lauderdale more for the tropical weather and having warm beach water year round. I've never lived there, but my firm has its FL office there and I've spent significant time there. I lived in Boca and Miami for a month each. I have about 1.5 years of living in Tampa under my belt. Tampa is definitely cheaper, but getting a lot more expensive than it was 5 years ago. More and more people are finding it (Tom Brady probably encouraged people to give it a second look lol). The good thing about Tampa is that hurricanes are much rarer and direct hits are like once in 100 year events. Being in the bay vs. Clearwater/St. Pete prevents the red tide from reaching it as well. I definitely like the city and I'm leaning towards going back there. I recommend doing the HCC ladder league if you're there. Pickleball has absolutely exploded there during the pandemic, but I like tennis much better lol.
 

irrguy

New User
South Florida...tennis is part of the culture here

I play in the summer as do many others. Its hot but you get used to it, especially if near the coast
 

LaZeR

Professional
South Florida...tennis is part of the culture here I play in the summer as do many others. Its hot but you get used to it, especially if near the coast
NOT Tampa which SUX for d tennis scene - even all public / free courts are always empty (of which i guess the latter might be a good thing).
 

socallefty

Hall of Fame
For the pros, tennis is ‘work’. If they train in hot, humid conditions, they have more endurance and will withstand the grind of the tour better. I’m a rec player and I want tennis to be fun and not feel like ‘work‘ which is what it feels like when I have to play in high humidity. So, I would rather live and play in Southern California than in Florida.
 

irrguy

New User
For the pros, tennis is ‘work’. If they train in hot, humid conditions, they have more endurance and will withstand the grind of the tour better. I’m a rec player and I want tennis to be fun and not feel like ‘work‘ which is what it feels like when I have to play in high humidity. So, I would rather live and play in Southern California than in Florida.
I actually moved to sofl from socal. June - Sep california weather is better no doubt. Rest of year I prefer it here
 

LaZeR

Professional
For the pros, tennis is ‘work’. If they train in hot, humid conditions, they have more endurance and will withstand the grind of the tour better. I’m a rec player and I want tennis to be fun and not feel like ‘work‘ which is what it feels like when I have to play in high humidity. So, I would rather live and play in Southern California than in Florida.
Agree SoCal has an awesome tennis scene, but IMO gotta have a High Salary/Well Paying Job or High Net Worth to maintain lifestyle. After having a place in West LA for 20+ years, moved to FL in 2019, & net worth has almost doubled in less than 2 Years. Also, Humidity is good for health, skin, etc. That's why so many Californians look like dried up prunes.
 
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antony

Semi-Pro
The beautiful thing about tennis is that it is such an international sport. I travel all around the world and find great tennis opportunities on all continents. Adjusting to unique local conditions — court surface, ball type, climate, altitude, regional style of opponent —is part of the fun!
I'm excited for when my league and lease ends so I can just pack a suitcase and tennis bag and go wherever to play (pending covid restrictions)
 

Shaolin

G.O.A.T.
Has to be Atlanta.

Gets mentioned constantly around here. From the sound of it every city block has a court and the average player is at least 5.5.
 
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