Tag Archives: United States Tennis Association

Tennis Center with Rendering of Indoor Courts

COURTING SUCCESS: An aerial view of the Rome Tennis Center at Berry College. A rendering of the new indoor courts now under construction can be seen at the top of the photo.

In the winter issue of Berry magazine, we reported that a best-in-class branded hotel would soon rise on Berry-owned property adjacent to the Rome Tennis Center at Berry College. College leaders and Marriott International have now confirmed that construction on a Fairfield Inn & Suites by Marriott will begin next fall, with completion expected in 2021. The 100-room hotel will be managed by Atlanta-based Hotel Equities.

“Based upon our market analysis of room demand in Rome, plus the demand of tennis center and college events, there is a clear need for a hotel in this area,” said President Steve Briggs. “And in keeping with Berry’s mission, there will be numerous job opportunities for students, from front desk and reception to the service areas.”

Read more about the planned hotel.

This news comes on the heels of the City of Rome’s decision earlier this year to move forward with plans for six indoor courts at the center, which is already one of the largest facilities of its type in the United States. The availability of indoor courts will make the facility even more competitive when bidding for major national events such as the Atlantic Coast Conference Men’s and Women’s Championships, which will return to Rome in 2020 and 2021.

The center, a public-private partnership between Berry and other entities, has hosted thousands of players and spectators for local, state, regional, national and international events since opening in 2016 as a 60-court facility on 30 acres of Berry-donated property adjacent to Mount Berry Mall. It is also home to Berry’s intercollegiate tennis teams and has played host to Georgia High School Association state championship matches.

This fall, it was one of the few complexes nationally to earn United States Tennis Association recognition as an “Outstanding Tennis Facility.”

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A dream several years in the making became a reality this summer with the grand opening of the Rome Tennis Center at Berry College. Currently the largest single-surface tennis center in the United States, the 60-court facility is located on Berry-donated property just north of Mount Berry Mall.

“Less than a handful of communities in the entire country come close to matching what you have here,” United States Tennis Association Executive Director Gordon Smith praised at the July opening. “You should all give yourselves a round of applause.”

The center is already proving to be a draw for players from throughout the Southeast, hosting four major tournaments and more than 1,600 participants in its first few weeks alone. Two other major events are scheduled this fall, with many more to follow in 2017 and beyond.

The new center was funded by a voter-approved special purpose sales tax as part of a public-private partnership expected to provide a major boost to the local economy while also opening the door to new work and learning opportunities for Berry students. The community partnership has allowed the Work Experience Program’s community and industry initiative to expand into the tennis world. The center also provides opportunities for students to pursue certification in Professional Tennis Management. Berry is one of a handful of colleges and universities nationwide to offer such a certification program.

“We want to create great experiences for our students,” said President Steve Briggs. “We want them to be ready for life and to understand what it means to put on great events and to serve other people’s needs. Students are attracted to Berry because they have the opportunity to participate in something like this.”

Additional coverage: Grand opening photo gallery, Good Day Atlanta

Public Relations Student Assistant Alexi Bell contributed to this story.

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Tennis Center Site PlanA vision years in the making came into sharp focus with the June groundbreaking for the Rome Tennis Center of Georgia at Berry College. Upon completion in 2016, the 51-court facility will become a key economic development tool for the Rome community and a source of fresh opportunities for Berry students.

Funded by a voter-approved SPLOST (local sales tax for a special purpose), the center represents a public-private partnership involving Berry, the City of Rome, the Coosa Valley Tennis Association, the Greater Rome Chamber of Commerce, and the Greater Rome Convention and Visitors Bureau. It will be located northeast of Mount Berry Square Mall on 35 acres of Berry-donated property orphaned by the 2012 completion of the Armuchee Connector linking Martha Berry Highway and Veterans Memorial Parkway (Georgia Loop 1).

Tennis Center Club HouseDesigned to tap into Rome’s strong tennis tradition, the center will have room for up to 60 regulation courts – more than sufficient to host large tournaments. Notable features include six NCAA regulation courts and three main-event courts overlooked by a 3,846-square-foot lodge-like clubhouse (pictured at left). Twelve of the regular courts will be painted with “quick-start” lines to introduce the sport to children. There’s also space for an indoor facility, a possible future addition.

In the summer issue of Berry magazine, President Steve Briggs discussed the college’s strategic emphasis on partnerships that support the surrounding community while providing students with practical firsthand experiences. Read his column.

Site plan and club house rendering courtesy of Cevian Design Lab

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