Cover Manila Padel Club brings one of the fastest emerging sports in the world, Padel, to the Philippines (Photo: Instagram/ @ManilaPadelClub)

The Philippines's first-ever padel club is coming to Bonifacio High Street (BGC). In this article, Tatler gets a sneak peek and an exclusive interview with its CEO and Co-founder Alenna Dawn

Tucked amongst the magnificent skyscrapers of Bonifacio Global City (BGC) is the upcoming Manila Padel Club, a community that brings together the people behind significant sectors of knowledge, business expertise, financial, technical, and sports development, with a passion for playing padel, one of the world’s fastest-growing sports.

For starters, padel is a sport that is often described as "tennis with walls" or "squash in the sun". In an exclusive interview, Manila Padel Club CEO and co-founder Alenna Dawn shares how she seeks to integrate padel into the fabric of social sports in the Philippines.

"We are incredibly excited about integrating padel into the local sports scene. To achieve this, we need to break down barriers to entry and grow the game by bringing new and different audiences into the sport. Indeed, one of our key strategies is to find ways to attract participation, and padel is a fantastic example of that. It’s an innovative format of tennis that’s fun, sociable and easy to play," she tells Tatler.

See also: Novak Djokovic: 5 Things To Know About The Tennis Player

Padel vs Tennis

While both sports seem to look the same, there are many things that differentiate padel from tennis, these include racket, ball, types of service, court dimensions, court surface, and even net height. But the most identifiable difference between the two is the glass walls that surround the padel court. 

According to Dawn, the sport can be played in groups of mixed ages and abilities. "Padel is not power-dominant so it is ideal for friends and families. Challenge family and friends or get matched with new friends," she explains.

Rackets

Padel players use special rackets that have smaller frames. Instead of the typical tennis racket that uses nylon strings, padel rackets have solid impact surfaces that are usually made up of rubber. The padel rackers are pretty light, allowing players to have enough control to put the ball on a good spot.

 

Padel Balls

Due to the padel racket's smaller size, the balls used for the game are also smaller than that of tennis. A tennis ball must have a diametre between 6.54cm and 6.86cm. The diametre of a padel ball needs to be between 6.35cm and 6.77cm.

Court 

The most notable difference between padel and tennis is the court. The former is usually played in doubles inside an enclosed court that is roughly 35 per cent smaller than the size of a tennis court. 

More from Tatler: The Tennis Stars to Note at Wimbledon 2021

Finding the Perfect Location

Dawn reveals that Manila Padel Club's location in BGC is a "strategic choice" for the place welcomes and attracts a huge number of sports-driven crowd who can help make the sport's popularity grow.  "Manila Padel Club’s flagship location in Bonifacio Global City's is a strategic choice aimed at benefiting the growth of racket sports by offering a format that is easier to play," Dawn discloses.

"We see padel as a potential supplement to BGC's offering - allowing the community the opportunity to play this social sport. For Padel to take off successfully, the padel courts should be in a prominent position as possible, where people will naturally stop and watch. The best way to get people willing to try it is for them to see it being played which makes the outdoor location in BGC the perfect venue," she further explains.

Related: The Nightlife In Bonifacio Global City

Manila Padel Club Membership Perks

Besides providing a spacious court for padel sports, there are many interesting things that members of the Manila Padel Club should look out for. The place boasts its fully-equipped outdoor gym and a cosy clubhouse cafe that features scrumptious food and beverage in an alfresco dining setup. 

"Our flagship club in BGC at 9th Avenue corner Lane R with a 2,000-square meter space will be comprised of five padel courts, a fully-equipped outdoor gym with strength and cardio equipment, and on-site food and beverage with al fresco dining. Innovation and out-of-the-box thinking is definitely something necessary during this time, which is why we decided to open our first fully outdoor facility," Dawn shares eagerly.

"We built the first-ever outdoor gym exclusively for our members. Our intention is to create a functional space for members to get back into their fitness routine. We will offer members the full gym experience in an open space spanning across more than 400 square meters, this creates a safe place for members to break a sweat. Our Clubhouse Cafe offers al fresco dining complimented by the open-air seating area with a roof deck overlooking the club—the perfect spot to watch padel matches while enjoying the Manila Padel Club lifestyle with friends and family," she adds. 

In the coming days, Dawn and the Manila Padel Club promise to think of innovative ways to boost padel sports popularity in the Philippines. "To facilitate the organic growth of the sport, introducing padel as a social club and integrating padel into existing clubs and facilities throughout Metro Manila will expand the potential opportunities it can bring," she concludes.


To know more about the Manila Padel Club, please feel free to visit their official website here, or check them out on Instagram (@ManilaPadelClub).

NOW READ

Wine In Metro Manila: 5 Wine Clubs And Subscriptions To Try

Serena Williams: 5 Things You May Not Know About The Tennis Superstar

These Are the Sports Stars in Asia to Know in 2021

© 2022 Tatler Asia Limited. All rights reserved.