Six inches of snow did not keep us from making our Sunday morning flight, to Delray Beach for our Valentine’s Weekend. As I confessed previously, we are tennis addicts! The lure of watching ATP tennis, in warm Delray Beach, in February, was too good to pass up.
We wanted to do a romantic weekend for Valentines Day doing what we love to do… Tennis, basking in the sun and relaxing at a resort. Since Valentine’s Day happened to be on a Wednesday this year, it opened the possibility of either weekend to do our “plan”. Our research produced a wonderful opportunity… The Delray Beach Open tennis tournament began on the weekend after Valentine’s Day! It helped to find out that the Monday following that weekend was President’s Day. (Both of our employers recognize this as a company holiday) Easy decision!
We flew down on Sunday evening and stayed about 30 miles away from the Fort Lauderdale Airport. Our first evening, we stayed at the Fort Lauderdale Marriott North. This property was recently renovated. The rooms were super clean. The concierge lounge had updated furniture, and very comfortable place to have coffee and breakfast, with a great view of Florida. When we left, I returned my room key (a little note with my room key explained if I completed the form, and returned my room keys I would receive bonus Marriott points. Of course, I turned it in!). The woman at the front desk asked me how was my stay and what could they do to make my stay better. I loved the friendly, caring nature of this Marriott property. I would definitely stay at this hotel again.
Prior to flying down to Ft. Lauderdale, Florida area, I contacted the Weston Racquet Club and requested a semi-private lesson. The Director of the Weston Tennis Club, Albert Fernandez (Cliff Drysdale Tennis), arranged for our lesson. We had sampled this facility in an earlier blog and previous month, but only participated in the morning group drill. I was curious to compare taking a semi-private lesson to the group drill. We were fortunate to take our lesson with the Assistant Director, Martine. He was fantastic. We were happily exhausted at the end of the semi-private lesson. He worked on exactly what we wanted to work on, and definitely challenged us. (Tip: If you take a semi-private lesson with a new tennis pro, it is a good idea to have in mind what you want to work on). We worked on our transition game, which is so important in doubles. We were very excited after we left on such a high note, to go watch tennis at the Delray Beach Open.
Delray Beach, Florida is North of Ft. Lauderdale airport (30-45 minutes away). We loved driving through the coastal town, passing many shops and restaurants, to our hotel, Delray Beach Marriott. The regal property, Delray Beach Marriott sat oceanfront (beach across the street), was at capacity. We checked in, and were given an upgrade to a luxury suite, with an ocean view (perk for being a Marriott Rewards member). The oceanview spacious, balcony was an escape from the swimming pool, which was standing room only, due to the busy travel season.(President’s Day weekend) On our way to our tennis venue, we rode the elevator overlooking the courtyard. We noticed a large pair of giant corn hole boards. We realized why the corn hole boards were large. The “bean bags” were square throw pillows. Families had a great time playing this very cool, large version of the game. We stayed at the beautiful, oceanfront, inviting, Delray Beach Marriott resort due to its proximity to the Delray Beach Open.
Getting to the Delray Beach Open from the Delray Beach Marriott Resort was easy. Just outside the side entrance of the resort we jumped on the (free) trolley that ran up Atlantic Avenue every 30 minutes. The trolley driver was super friendly, and provided us with great information about Delray Beach, as we passed all the local restaurants and shops (tip: Delray Beach hosts many active restaurants). Venues for all ages were evident. Delray Beach was the place to be!
The Delray Beach Open was played at the Delray Beach Tennis Club (tip: You can book court time at the Delray Beach Tennis Club during your stay (except of course the courts used during the tournament)). The Delray Beach Open was an ATP Masters 250 event (men’s singles and doubles). The ticket prices were reasonably priced. We especially loved the intimate setting. We enjoyed every minute of play, watching some of tennis’ greats. On our way to the VIP club lounge, we stopped to watch the tennis clinic on the side court. The tennis clinic was run by the Bryan Brothers. We loved watching them in motion. They split stepped every time the tennis ball was struck. The participants on the court looked like they were having a great time (Tip: purchase the VIP club lounge tickets with your event tickets, to escape the hot sun for a little air conditioning). Later we witnessed other clinics happening with Tommy Haas! If you have ever wanted to take a clinic with some of your favorite pros, it appeared that this tournament may provide the opportunity. We plan to research this a little more before our next visit to this tournament.
Sadly we had to leave the warm Florida sun, to return home. Although it was a short three day- two night trip, we had the opportunity to hit tennis balls with a great Teaching Tennis Professional, watch an outstanding, well run, men’s professional tennis tournament and relax at an extraordinary Beach Resort!
A great tennis clothes line that I discovered on my first visit to Weston, Florida was Lacoa Sports. I love the design as well as the comfort of the Lacoa Sports clothes. My viewers and friends may now order items of this line with a 10% discount and Free Shipping. Just use the promo code tennis10 if you see something you like. My favorite skirt is “Tattoo.” I also enjoy wearing my “tennis addict” shirt. Don’t forget to use the promo code tennis10! Order here or type in the URL https://lacoa-sports.myshopify.com !
Places we visited during our trip to Delray Beach, Florida:
Delray Beach Marriott Resort, Delray Beach, Florida (select the Marriott Link to make your next Marriott reservation).
The Delray Beach Open, Delray Beach, Florida (tournament is played each year in mid February)