Close, picturesque destinations for tennis fanatics
By Cory Sekine-Pettite
Summers are for creating memories. One way to do that is to hit the courts in a new setting. Whether you prefer the clean mountain air or a cooling ocean breeze, an unforgettable summer getaway is just a short drive away at any of the following locales.
Watersong features stylish, modern cabins with shared neighborhood features including a rushing creek and private hiking trails. Individual cabins have their own unique features that include waterfall views & access, mountain views, creek views, creek access with trout fishing (catch & release only), indoor pools, outdoor pools, fire pits, and now pickleball courts.
Watersong is located just 10 minutes from downtown Ellijay and 25 minutes to downtown Blue Ridge. Take advantage of local shopping and dining, wineries, bike trails, tubing, summer festivals, and more.
Big Canoe Racquet Club
The “Mountains of Big Canoe” are but a backdrop to the newly updated Racquet Club facility, which can play host to a tennis or pickleball excursion. The 107-year-old former Wolfscratch School underwent a major renovation this year, with an expansion of the tennis and pickleball retail area. Pro tip: If you want to really soak in the ambiance of what the Native Americans called “the enchanted land,” take it all in while relaxing with a cup of coffee at one of the patio tables.
Big Canoe has weekly tennis and pickleball clinics for all levels and seven different weekly round-robins. The club’s amenities include 10 tennis courts (six clay, two hard courts, and two indoor courts) and four stand-alone pickleball courts. The Racquet Club also can set you up to play on one of Big Canoe’s four bocce courts — or hook up the junior Djokovic’s in your party with a kids’ tennis camp. Plus, there’s hiking, outdoor pools, and a water park.
Edge of Heaven in the Smoky Mountains
Pigeon Forge, Tennessee
There is something for everyone at this amazing cabin, which features six bedrooms (and sleeps up to 28 guests), 4.5 bathrooms, breathtaking Smoky Mountain views, a pickleball & basketball court, playground, hot tub, fire pit, swim spa, and more.
Play and rest in total seclusion, or head into town for endless family entertainment options from theme parks, water parks, shopping, and dining. Availability is limited for this amazing mountain home, so check the website for details.
Palmetto Dunes Oceanfront Resort
Hilton Head, South Carolina
Tennis and pickleball lovers near and far can book their perfect weekend escape at Palmetto Dunes Oceanfront Resort on Hilton Head Island and enjoy tennis and pickleball court time, lessons, clinics and more. Hilton Head Island remains evergreen year-round, making the 2,000-acre resort an ideal weekend destination.
Palmetto Dunes offers 17 Har-Tru tennis courts (four lighted), 24 pickleball courts (all lighted) as well as a well-stocked, 1,800-square-foot pro shop. Eight of the pickleball courts have recently been resurfaced with a Nova Sports USA all-weather surface system. Along with the courts and the beach, Hilton Head’s generally mild climate makes the Lowcountry ideal to enjoy one of Palmetto Dunes’ three award-winning, championship golf courses, as well as miles of paved bike paths, or explore Shelter Cove Harbour & Marina for a variety of dining, shops, and entertainment.
Sandestin Golf and Beach Resort
Miramar Beach, Florida
When you book directly with Sandestin, the resort rolls out the red carpet of complimentary amenities. Fabulous perks and extras help you get the most out of your stay, whether it’s biking Sandestin’s miles of trails, kayaking the bay, boogie-boarding, access to four resort pools and the fitness center, or getting in some spirited sets of tennis on one of 15 HydroGrid clay and hard courts. Free beach parking and a resort tram are offered to all Sandestin guests.
The resort offers daily tennis clinics and mixed round robins on the weekends. Ladies’ tournaments are offered during the fall. After a game of tennis, you can walk over to the marina for lunch or head straight to the beach. Everything you need is right within the 2,400 acres of the resort. World-class shopping, award-winning dining, activities, adventure, and more!
Spectrum Resorts — The Beach Club Resort & Spa and Turquoise Place
Gulf Shores, Alabama
Orange Beach, Alabama
With Spectrum Resorts, you can enjoy every second of your vacation without stressing over the details. You’ll have everything you need right at your resort, with priority access and premium perks that promise a VIP experience at The Beach Club Resort & Spa and Turquoise Place. If you want to brush up on your technique or learn some new skills, you can participate in one of multiple tennis clinics, which are open to any skill level and are offered for adults and children.
Away from the court, The Beach Club offers basketball, shuffleboard, fitness trail, spa/salon, restaurants, fitness center, volleyball, indoor/outdoor pools, and sauna/steam room. At Turquoise Place you will find a Lazy River, indoor/outdoor pools, fitness center, hot tubs on every unit balcony, and sauna/steam room.
Sea Island, Georgia
With expansive settings and five miles of private beach, Sea Island offers guests an array of beautifully appointed accommodations from which to choose, including private cottages, elegant guestrooms, and spacious suites. With a host of off-the-court activities, the availability of private lessons, custom clinics, eight pickleball courts and 14 Har-Tru courts (8 lighted) combine to make Sea Island the perfect getaway to improve your game.
An exceptional resort, appealing to those who appreciate gracious service and heartfelt hospitality, Sea Island is home to four Forbes Five-Star experiences – The Cloister at Sea Island, The Lodge at Sea Island, The Spa at Sea Island, and the Georgian Room restaurant. Off the court, Sea Island features a 65,000-square-foot spa and fitness center, three championship golf courses, seven pools (one indoor), a Beach Club, Yacht Club, Shooting School, and more.