Resort Converts Tennis Court from Problem to Asset, in 72-Hours
There can be a very fine line between what constitutes an asset and what constitutes a problem. For outdoor resort tennis courts, this fine line is crossed when the first guest questions if a court is being maintained in good playing condition.
In the Midwest, keeping resort tennis courts in playable condition can be a significant challenge. General upkeep must take place before or after normal guest demand and without disturbing other guest activities (including sleeping), and the weather window for repair and renovation work frequently mirrors peak guest demand for outdoor recreational opportunities. Resorts often balance high-end amenities with breath-taking seclusion, helping guests relax and reconnect with nature, family, and friends. This tree-friendly approach creates a picturesque haven for guests, but can adversely impact tennis court service life.
(Taken from Court & Track Published 8-1-2011) Trees often overhang or shade resort tennis courts, slowing down moisture evaporation after rain events and contributing to peeling and premature degeneration of the court color system. Wet leaves can stain tennis court color systems and provide a damp, cool medium for the growth of mold and mildew, key culprits for causing court discoloration.
And though guests flock to resorts to escape reality, outdoor resort tennis courts face the same weathering and aging realities their non-resort outdoor court-cousins face: Over time, they will crack.
The outdoor tennis court at the Shallows Resort in Door County, Wisconsin had crossed the line from resort asset to problem. Weathering, aging, cracking, and color-coat peeling impacted court play and the guest experience, contrasting dramatically with the natural ambience and with other deluxe accommodations the resort offered. Also, net post spacing was off, causing trouble for proper net installation and making it difficult to maintain the proper net height at the court center and the net post ends. Bringing the court back into playing condition presented a series of challenges, with court downtime due to needed repairs during the resort’s busiest season leading the list.
A number of renovation options were available. Repairing the existing cracks and re-coloring the court was a viable option, but the age of the court and shading issues described above ensured the court would be taken out of service for an extended period every few years for additional repair and re-coloring. Court removal and reconstruction would solve the problem, but would be noisy, dusty, costly, and take the court out of service for 8-12 weeks.
Installing a sand-filled-turf or a cushioned mat over the court surface was another good option, but would be expensive and would not provide a good surface for in-line roller hockey (the existing tennis facility was used as a multi-sport court).
The selected solution used an inter-locking, synthetic, modular tile system designed specifically for tennis courts, the Matéflex II Tennis Surface. The tiles are made from a special, all-weather, high-impact polypropylene copolymer and are fully color impregnated. The tile feature a narrow-gauge rib system that suspends the surface over the existing court and provides for quick drainage, high traction, and consistent ball bite. Highly durable and mold and mildew resistant, the tile system requires minimal maintenance and will provide the longest service life of the renovation options considered, given the court’s location. The selected solution was also fast, minimizing court downtime by transforming the existing court from problem to asset in only 72 hours.
Court base problems did need to be repaired prior to tile installation. This included basic court clean-up, cleaning out existing cracks and filling them with a court-patch binder, repairing court low spots (deep low areas with infrared heat and asphalt; minor birdbaths with court-patch binder and sanding), and shaving down court high spots. The existing net posts were removed and new net posts, with proper spacing, were installed.
The owner was extremely pleased with the results.
In addition to tennis court renovation, the Matéflex II Tennis Surface system creates a premium sport surface for new tennis court construction applications. Key benefits for new court use include durability, low-maintenance, reduced leg stress/player fatigue, quick drying time after rains, and highly-consistent play.
To find out if the Matéflex II Tennis Surface system is the right solution for transforming your tennis court from problem to asset, contact us.