Find out what you’ll see “behind the scenes” on a Rod Laver Arena Tour at Melbourne Park.
About the Rod Laver Arena Tour
Rod Laver Arena tours are run every day and cost $15 for adults. It’s a great way for tennis fans to see restricted areas that you can’t get access to with an Australian Open ticket.
View full details of the Rod Laver Arena tours.
Here are some pics and tidbits of info that I found interesting while on the tour.
Melbourne Park’s tennis courts are used all year round by players, and also to train the AO Ballkids.
The winners only get to keep the trophies (pictured above) for a short time ie for media pics etc. Then they hand them back and get a replica.
The Walk of Champions
The tour starts with the Walk of Champions and along with the media room that was my favourite part of the tour, because I’ve seen players walking down there on TV.
The Media Room
The tour takes you inside the Media Room and you can get photos of yourself in the interview chair if you want to.
As part of the player contract, players must appear for media after a match, whether they win or lose, or face a fine of up to $50,000.
The Media Room holds 80 members of the press plus 20-30 camera men.
The Davis Cup Room
This room has a great view of Margaret Court arena and Garden Square, plus Davis Cup pics and Aussie team lists on the walls.
Like the name says, this is the hub of the tournament.
There is a white board where players can write messages. It’s framed so you can’t inadvertently rub out any of the autographs!
Interesting tidbits about Rod Laver Arena (RLA)
- RLA was the first arena of its kind to have a retractable roof. The roof takes about 20 minutes to open or to close.
- The colour of the chairs in RLA varies (between green and beige) so that when cameras span the crowd there is an illusion that the arena is full, even if it isn’t.
- RLA is regularly used for concerts during the year. A floor is added on top of the tennis court.
The Melbourne Park renovations
I’ve read a lot about the renovations, and have visited the grounds to have a stooge around. Here are some things that I didn’t know prior to the tour.
- Garden Square (one of the main areas where spectators can watch Rod Laver Arena matches on a big screen) will be demolished and will be replaced with 2 x 2000 seat courts.
- The new Garden Square will be covered by a canopy, to protect spectators from sun and rain.
- The Margaret Court Arena roof will be ready in 2014.
What it looks like at the moment….
And what it will look like…
The Australian Open just gets better and better.
It’s a great tour. I can’t believe I haven’t done it until recently.
Until next time
Grand Slam Gal
What an awesome “behind-the-scenes” look!
I definitely think it’s worth doing. It’s interesting that if you do the tour in the next few months you won’t see everything (well, the locker rooms!) due to the renovations, but they also tell you a lot about the renovations which was one of the parts I found most interesting.
I live in Melbourne and only recently heard about these tours. It’s nice to hear from a tennis fan that the tour is worth it. Will have to add it to my list of things to do.