Tennis Industry magazine


Private Retreats

For these residential award-winners, location is king.

By Peter Francesconi

Everyone knows that the first rule in real estate is “location, location, location.” That maxim certainly applies to the six residential court winners of the Racquet Sports Industry/American Sports Builders Association 2005 Facility-of-the-Year Awards. All are in wonderful locations, and all these courts enhance the value of the properties on which they’re located.

But, certainly with residential courts, “location” can also mean particular difficulties for court contractors. In fact, all of the nominating companies listed difficulties that they had to overcome to produce these winning courts. Maybe one of the most difficult was the private Har-Tru court in Oakley, Utah, which was cut out of the side of a mountain in a remote area. The result, though, complete with stone perimeter to blend into the surroundings and a special wire fencing with wood posts, is impressive.

The hard court in Lemon Heights, Calif., also had difficult hillside access, set back from the street. Retaining walls, a concrete cantilever foundation, and other construction support methods were employed to complete the job. For the Har-Tru court at Harbour Island in the Bahamas, all materials and equipment had to be shipped from the U.S. in containers by freight boat. The work was completed during the harsh weather of hurricane season.

The cushioned acrylic court in Norwell, Mass., also required excessive site work and preparation, since the chosen location had a 7-foot change in elevation within the court limits, and a more than 10-foot elevation change throughout the excavation. The contractors also needed to remove (and later replace) a pergola and stone wall, then build a 50-foot gravel road to the site to gain access.

The private Har-Tru court in Miami is right in the city, so work space was limited, and a privacy wall was installed. And the Gywnedd, Pa., hard court required a retaining wall that the township specified as “natural only.”

All this just proves that when you have a great location for a court, you’ll go to great lengths to make it perfect.

Miami, FL

Miami, Fla.
(Nominated by Fast Dry Courts, Pompano Beach, Fla.)
Architect & Contractor: Fast Dry Courts
Surface: Lee Tennis Har-Tru (Hydroblend)
Subsurface Irrigation: Lee Tennis
Net, Net Posts, Center Strap: BP International
Windscreens: J.A. Cissel
Trench Drain: Zurn Industries
Lights: RLS Lighting TE 1000 System

Harbour Islands, Bahamas

Harbour Island, Eleuthera, Bahamas
(Nominated by Fast Dry Courts, Pompano Beach, Fla.)
Architect & Contractor: Fast Dry Courts
Surface: Lee Tennis Har-Tru (Hydroblend)
Subsurface Irrigation: Lee Tennis
Net Posts, Line Tapes: Lee Tennis
Net, Windscreens: J.A. Cissel
Trench Drain: Zurn Industries

Oakley, UT

Oakley, Utah
(Nominated by Welch Tennis Courts Inc., Sun City, Fla.)
Contractor: Welch Tennis Courts Inc.
Surface: Lee Tennis Har-Tru (Hydroblend)
Subsurface Irrigation: Welch Tennis Courts (Hydrogrid)
Net, Net Posts: BP International

Norwell, MA

Norwell, Mass.
(Nominated by Boston Tennis Court Construction
Co. Inc., Hanover, Mass.)
Contractor: Boston Tennis Court Construction Co. Inc.
Surface: Nova Sports USA
Net Posts: BP International
Net, Center Strap: J.A. Cissel
Lights: LSI Courtsider Sports Lighting

Gywnedd, PA

Gywnedd, Pa.
(Nominated by Pro-Sport Construction Inc., Devon, Pa.)
Contractor: Pro-Sport Construction
Surface: Nova
Net, Windscreens: BP International
Net Posts: Douglas Industries
Lights: LSI Industries

Lemon Heights, CA

Lemon Heights, Calif.
(Nominated by Zaino Tennis Courts Inc., Orange, Calif.)
Contractor: Zaino Tennis Courts
Surface: California Products
Net, Net Posts: Edwards

For details on the 2006 Outstanding Tennis Facility Awards, contact the ASBA at 866-501-ASBA or

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About the Author

Peter Francesconi is editorial director of Tennis Industry magazine.



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