The Palmetto Dunes Tennis & Pickleball Center was recently rated as the world’s “Best Pro Shop” by Tennis Resorts Online.
Palmetto Dunes topped hundreds of outstanding tennis resort’s around the globe. The Resort at Longboat in Key Club, Fla., was No. 2 on the Tennis Resorts Online ranking, followed by The Lodge at Pebble Beach, Calif., and Kiawah Island Golf Resort.
“The Palmetto Dunes Tennis Center caters to a mixture of groups and vacationers,” writes Tennis Resorts Online Editor Roger Cox. “The reception is extremely friendly—these aren't kids behind the desk but adults. All of them play tennis—many in fact are on teams—and so they really do understand tennis players and their needs.”
Boasting 21 clay courts, including four lighted for night play, 16 lighted pickleball courts and a beautifully well-stocked, 1,800-square-foot tennis pro shop — Hilton Head Island's largest — the Palmetto Dunes Tennis & Pickleball Center has been named the top tennis resort in the Carolinas by Tennis Magazine. There's also a helpful, energetic staff whose primary goal is to make your visit a rewarding one.
For tennis enthusiasts, Palmetto Dunes runs back-to-back group clinics and drills so that guests can carpenter together a program day by day that could be as short as one hour or as long as 4.5 hours. And the junior programs coincide with the adult programs, so families can more easily come and go together. Among the options are a 90-minute Grand Slam clinic — a series of fast-paced drills and ball machine workouts — a 90-minute Competitive Edge Doubles clinic, and a 90-minute Competitive Edge drill session. All are scheduled to run one after the other and geared to intermediate-advanced players.
Beginners and intermediates, meanwhile, can choose from less demanding 60-minute stroke-of-the-day, daily drill, and cardio tennis sessions, also scheduled back to back. Because of this thoughtful, modular schedule, those who want activity after activity can easily spend a whole morning and part of the afternoon on court. What's more, as a boon to parents, the junior clinics run at the same time as the adult clinics, so the whole family can come and go as a group. Beyond that the tennis center runs a daily round robin, supervised by a member of the staff, and former Finland No. 1 Tapi Hayrinen runs a set of Cardio tennis sessions. From March to October there is a weekly exhibition and happy hour and a demo day.
The most significant recent change at Palmetto Dunes is the introduction of pickleball, now available on 16 dedicated courts. "We are ramping up our lesson, clinic and round robin offerings for pickleball and really are having fun with it," said Palmetto Dunes Director of Tennis & Pickleball John Kerr. "Pickleball is a great family activity because the learning curve is much shorter than tennis. Nobody is a beginner for very long and soon they are smiling and laughing. The grandparents can compete with grandkids on court, making it a multigenerational activity."
“Tennis remains a focus,” writes Cox on Tennis Resorts Online. “Stop by the (Palmetto Dunes) pro shop, as I did, and you'll find an experienced staff who are at once friendly and very service conscious. Game matching remains a priority: if you give them 24 hours’ notice and book a court, they promise to have someone for you at that time. All in all, the center offers an excellent series of programs.”
Cox has made a career of giving such advice, initially as Tennis magazine's travel and resorts editor and since 1999 as the founder of Tennis Resorts Online. During the course of several decades, Cox has visited more than 350 resorts on five continents and participated in some 50 different tennis camps, many more than once. It is that personal experience—supplemented now by reviews submitted by vacationers — that underpins Tennis Resorts Online.
Since 1999, Tennis Resorts Online has helped vacationers decide where to go on their next tennis holiday.
Palmetto Dunes offers getaway specials for tennis players. The Tennis Stay and Play package includes four days and three nights in a two-bedroom resort-view villa. After breakfast at the Palmetto Dunes General Store, enjoy two free hours of court time and a one-hour clinic, covering either the stroke of the day or a daily drill. The “Extreme Tennis Vacation” package includes an 8-day/ 7-night stay in a two-bedroom resort-view villa for four guests with three 1-hour, semi-private tennis lessons per player, two clinics per player and daily court time. Free court time is based on availability.
“Over the last few years a subtle change has taken place at Palmetto Dunes to the benefit of its vacationers, tennis and otherwise,” writes Cox on Tennis Resorts Online. “Greenwood Communities and Resorts, which owns the resort's recreational amenities, has also taken on a larger and larger share of the villa rentals. That has given them far more flexibility to offer a range of attractive packages that bundle lodging with whatever recreational activities you want as part of your holiday, whether that's tennis, golf, group outings, weddings, family reunions, or other celebrations. With a phone call or online request to a trip planner, you can arrange every detail of your vacation, including lodging in a villa or home at preferred rates.”