New York, Melbourne, Paris and London: For some fans attending a culmination of a US Open in a Big Apple this weekend, a tennis Grand Slam contest is one stop on a grand transport itinerary.
Just as a players dream of winning a sport’s 4 many prestigious trophies — a US Open in September, a Australian Open in January, a French Open in late spring, and Wimbledon in a summer — many tennis lovers make it a idea to revisit all 4 tournaments in person.
Take Katie Aune, a Chicago fundraiser, who finished a “spectator Grand Slam” in new years after adding it to her bucket list. A tennis fan given childhood, Aune once wrote a poem in youth high about her dream of saying Andre Agassi play and still has lustful memories of waking adult for NBC’s Breakfast during Wimbledon when she was a teenager.
Not calm to only watch on television, Aune, 37, began her query to transport to a Grand Slam tournaments roughly a decade ago.
“Any sports fan will tell we there’s zero utterly like being there in person,” Aune said. “You feel a atmosphere of a throng and everybody entertaining and we unequivocally feel like you’re partial of it… examination it on TV only isn’t close.”
Aune started her Grand Slam goal with a French Open in 2004 and done it to a Australian Open a following year. “That was a lot of fun. The Aussies adore their sports and that was a blast,” she recalled.
In a tumble of 2005, she attended her initial US Open in New York — a initial of 5 visits so far, including this week – and saw a final compare of Agassi’s career.
In 2010, Aune finally requisitioned a dream outing to Wimbledon. She was there a day Britain’s Queen Elizabeth visited a drift and had a front quarrel chair for a longest tennis compare in story – a epic three-day conflict between American John Isner and Nicolas Mahut. Isner won 70-68 in a fifth set.
“People there have such a honour for tennis,” Aune said. “They know all a practice and there’s only so most tradition that grows around it.”
Aune also indulged in strawberries and cream, yet that sold Wimbledon protocol valid to be a bit of a letdown, she said, with a apportionment smaller and a cream a small runnier than she expected.
Aune arranges all of her travels herself, though tennis lovers who wish some-more assistance have copiousness of options. A series of companies specialize in tennis travel, charity all from contest tickets to elaborate package deals that will let fans try a Grand Slam cities and beyond.
“People who have a possibility to go and have a means to go — it’s a loyal pleasure in life to be means to do that,” pronounced Mike Bernstein, boss of Championship Tennis Tours.
The Scottsdale, Ariz., association takes about 10,000 people a year to tennis tournaments all over world, with Bernstein estimating some-more than half of his clients attend all 4 Grand Slams over a march of a decade. A few try to do in all in one year, though that’s singular since of a responsibility and time required, he said.
The company’s standard customer is someone in their early 50s who will spend about $2,000 for a package deal, though prices can operation from $25 for a night eventuality sheet during a US Open to $20,000 for a integrate who wish a oppulance knowledge during a Australian Open, Bernstein noted.
“They all share a common denominator: they adore a competition of tennis and they adore to travel,” he said. “You can lay in your home and listen to a pleasing opening of a opera, or we can indeed go to a opera. The disproportion is: there’s zero like being there live.”