Fancy a spot of Tennis?
Well you’re in luck! Just at the foot of Capistrano Village is one of the most popular tennis clubs in Nerja, La Raqueta, meaning, you guessed it, ‘THE RACKET’.
La Raqueta Tennis Club has three well maintained, full size tennis courts, two paddle courts and also, impressively, a bowls club.
There is a café open all day, with tables outside, giving you great views over the courts with the beautiful Almijara mountains in the background.
Or would you rather try your hand at Paddle (Known as Padel in Spanish)?
Paddle, if you are not yet familiar, is a game that was once adapted from tennis.
There are rumours in the UK that Paddle was invented by the British, as an alternative to tennis, and more suitable for playing on cruise ships, in the early 20th century.
But, according to Spanish history, Paddle is known to have been created by a Mexican called Enrique Corcuera, who lived in Acapulco. He altered the game of tennis to better suit his space, by building walls around his own mini tennis court at home. He, with his friends and family, spent many days enjoying this new, faster game played with a short, wooden bat. They called the game ‘Padel tenis’, otherwise known as ‘Hermano pequeño del tenis’, which literally translates as ‘the little brother of tennis’.
It was Prince Alfonso of Hohenlohe-Langenburg who introduced Paddle to Spain in the early seventies. He visited Enrique in his Acapulco home, tried this new game, and instantly fell in love with it. The Prince happened to be a keen businessman who invested in many of the Costa del Sol resorts, particularly in Marbella.
In 1974 two Paddle courts were built in the Marbella Hotel Club; and it quickly became popular all along the Costa del Sol.
Even in the UK, Paddle has a growing interest. Think of Paddle as ‘Squash in the Sun’, or maybe ‘mini-tennis with a wall’ to get an idea of what it’s like.
How Paddle differs to Tennis:
- The court is smaller and has no doubles lanes, and the net is lower.
- Paddle is played with a solid paddle instead of a strung racket.
- A depressurized tennis ball is played with an underhand serve.
As the court is only half the size of a tennis court, paddle is particularly popular with children and novice would-be tennis players; and the La Raqueta club is as good a place as any to give it a shot!
La Raqueta Prices and Opening Times
- 08.30am-22.00pm on weekdays
- 08.30am-18.00pm on weekends.
I am told if you want to play a little later it might be possible as long as you book in advance.
Don’t worry if you are not prepared with your own equipment as you can rent:
- Rackets cost €2 for 1 hour.
- 3 balls cost €1 for 1 hour.
You can also buy balls in the little shop should you need.
The following prices are for renting the whole court for one hour:
- Tennis Court- €12/ €10for members
- Walled Paddle Court- €12/ €10 for members
- ‘Crystal’ (transparent acrylic) Paddle Court- €14/ €12 for members
Although there is pretty great natural light at La Raqueta, particularly in the summer months, you may sometimes want them to switch on the artificial lights, which will add an extra €2 to your bill.
La Raqueta is also home to the Almijara Bowls club. The general club play days are Monday, Wednesday and Friday from 10.30am. Other days are reserved for League Games. The Almijara Bowls club state that visitors and new members are always welcome, so if you’d like to join in or get more information, you can visit their website: www.almijarabowlsnerja.wordpress.com
For more information or to book a court at La Raqueta, call 952 520 948/ 606 289 717
You can find it at the roundabout, near the entrance to Capistrano Village, on Avenida de Pescia, Nerja.