One of the myths about the Maldives is that there is nothing to do there. One glance at the sheer scale of the Best of the Maldives “Activity” listing dispels that notion. There is a big difference between “you can do nothing” and “you have to do nothing”.
When you do decide you feel like a bit of stimulating action, there’s no better place than the picturesque surroundings of this tropical utopia. Where else can you play a few games of tennis framed by the dazzling ocean? LUX North Male Atoll’s uniquely positioned seaside court even features blue playing surface for the full azure effect.
The Australian Open is in full swing this week kicking off the 2018 Grand Slam season. For a bit of Aussie tennis in the Maldives, the best courtside seats are Amilla Fushi. A number of resorts have invested on some pretty sophisticated tennis facilities, but Amilla Fushi has the biggest range of tennis amenities I have seen at their “LUX Tennis” club…
- ·Two floodlit tennis courts, nestled amid tropical trees – Amilla allows guests improve every aspect of their game through personalised tennis programmes and events. Amilla has partnered with LUX Tennis, which provides professional tennis coaches to luxury resorts and private clients worldwide for a tailored solution that manages all tennis activities.”
The “club” offers lessons and player partners with ATP Pros, exhibition matches by visiting ATP Tour players, kids instruction, ball machine (see photo below)and serve speed radar. Not to mention a range of rackets and tennis wear including shoes. A bit of above and beyond by the resort from down under.
I’m always a bit surprised at how popular the sport of tennis is in the Maldives. Some visitors struggle to conceive of any pulse-elevating activity in this languorous paradise. The water sports and pool games I can understand since the water cools you off and they don’t take that much exertion.
One answer to the tropical heat is to move the activity into an air conditioned buildings like most of the fitness centres. But then you are sort of segregated from the natural fresh air and environs you came to immerse yourself in. Plus, a full sized indoor tennis court would be a lot of AC.
It’s an issue for people like my father who as it happens turn 80 years old today. And he is still playing competitive tennis. Still dissecting his swing for that serving perfection. For him, the brilliant sun is more than just energy sapping and dehydrating, but it is also a medical concern as he has had a few skin cancers removed so he needs to watch his exposure to the sun.
Velaa resort has the perfect solution. Their full sized covered court provides the best of both worlds inside and out. The roof shields from the sun (and the occasional rain) while the open sides maintain an outside feel. They have also installed patented “Big Ass Fans”, gigantic ceiling fans which gently move the air around the help keep it fresh. Finally, they have set up a training wall for those who just want to practice some hitting on their own.
With all this tennis enthusiasm and innovations, I’ve added a new new “Tennis” tag to the blog.
Happy 80th Birthday Dad.
Happy St. Patricks Day. The day for celebrating all things green. So a tip of the old leprechaun's hat to Dusit Thani and their brilliant green astro-turf tennis courts. This surface combines the benefits of softer playing and less heat retention and reflection in the bright equatorial sun. A few other resorts also offer astro, but Dusit is the only one with two!
Erin go bright-green!
Most resorts have tennis courts, many will provide a player to have a match against, Reethi actually organises regular competitions, but Constance Halaveli provides a tennis referee. And a proper ref chair to sit in (see above). His name is Nilantha Kuarage (not in photo…that’s me) and he can also serve as a coach, teacher and partner too.
The courtside facilities also feature a well equipped “coach”/spectator seat with a parasol shade and cabinet for a water cooler (see below).
The US Open season with this week’s tennis additions has tipped the balance for adding a “Racquet” for racquet sports to the blog category list.
US Tennis Open finale today features two of the stars Djokovic and Nadal who seem to have no difficulty finding each other in the big tournaments in recent years.
While it’s not a problem reading by the beach or going to the gym, finding someone to play against can be a challenge for tennis fans travelling. Sure many resorts will offer resort staff to play, but if you want a full fledged tourney of competition, then you need to go to One & Only Reethi Rah. Reethi feature a weekly visitor tennis tournament…
“Every Wednesday from 4 to 6 pm our Tennis Club hosts a social tournament where guests will compete against each other in mixed teams. This social tournament is a great way to meet new people and discover our tennis facilities.”
No sign up required and complementary. Though watch out if repeat guest, who opened their tennis court, a guy named ‘Djokovic’, is on one of the teams, be warned that he’s a bit of a ringer.
The youngsters at This Wimbledon are pushing the old guard out of the way (a record number of retirements, veteran upsets in early rounds). And one resort keen to aid the youngest tennis generation is LUX Maldives with its ‘Teddy Tennis’ programme…
“Aimed at children aged three to eight, Teddy Tennis combines music, pictures and teddy bear stories to make a child’s first experience of tennis fun and rewarding…Children are introduced to the programme via the story book, ‘Danny Bear joins the Teddy Tennis Academy’, which includes stories that encourage good practices such as eating healthy foods and exercising. A host of Bear characters, such as Molly (who likes to volley) and Boris (who loves to bounce) are used to demonstrate basic tennis movements. Music is used to emphasize the rhythm of the moves. Children then copy the moves on court helped by Head Ted – the tennis coach. Teddy Tennis is a very structured programme, with three core components: Play Sessions, Activities and Music. Children are divided into two age groups: 3 to 5 1/2 (Danny Bear) and 5 ½ to 8 (Johnny Mac Bear). Teddy Tennis Play Sessions are carefully devised to take account of differences in the age, ability and experience of the children involved. Teddy Tennis Music has been specifically created to provide the right rhythm and timing to play each game or activity. Teddy Tennis Activities – over 50 in total – focus on three areas of skill development: Movement Skills, Ball Skills and Racquet Skills.”