French Open 2015
The French Open has long been one of the world’s most important tennis tournaments, attracting top talent from all over the world. Running from 24 May through 7 June, it is pro tennis's premier clay court tournament.
Location and Nearby Attractions
The French Open as it is known today has been in place since 1928, when the new Roland Garros Stadium opened as the permanent home of the tournament (in French, the Tournoi de Roland-Garros). The stadium is located just off the A13 in Paris, making it extremely easy to find top-shelf holiday rental accommodation near the stadium (so long as you book in advance). If you are staying near the Stadium, you will find the Musée d’Orsay, the Louvre, the Arc d’Triomphe, the Eiffel Tower, and the Notre Dame Cathedral all within 10 km.
This has been the site of much frustration, as many of the top names in tennis have never won here. McEnroe, Williams, Roddick, Sharapova, and many more have gone home disappointed from the French Open’s courts. The main reason is that this tournament is the only one of the four Grand Slam tournaments played on a clay surface. Clay tends to slow down the ball and give a higher bounce.
This means that some of the more aggressive players who rely on service speed can find themselves at a loss here. This isn’t a bad development; it only serves to push professionals to find other tools in their kit during the match and heightens the competition.
Though the tournament draws an average of 400,000 visitors per year, the tournament organizers fear that the Stadium doesn’t compare well against the locations of the other Grand Slam tournaments. In truth, it is the smallest venue, and there was talk in 2010 and 2011 about moving to a new location. The current decision has been to stay in the current location, but to launch a new renovation campaign.
Plans include new courts, a retractable roof over center court, and an overall 60% increase in venue size. If you’ve never attended the French Open before, you may want to schedule a visit for this year so that you can see the current site as-is. Renovations are scheduled to finish by 2016, so this could be your last chance to see the current stadium.
- During your stay in Paris, accommodation is likely to be your largest single expense. Do your research thoroughly and select a holiday home in the location that suits you best. 40,000 of your fellow tennis fans will be booking early, so you should too.
- On arrival in Paris’ Charles De Gaulle Airport, take a taxi from the airport to your rental home. Traffic in Paris is legendarily difficult to navigate, and you don’t need the additional stress. Plan to spend roughly € 50 and one hour of your time on the journey.
- Enjoy the tournament!!
Note: All dates & information in the above article were correct as July 28th, 2014
(image courtesy of Roman Boed)