Recently, my friend Asma and I were chatting about how I had not picked up a tennis racquet in years and so she invited me to come to her tennis club for a tour. She grew up in India playing tennis on grass courts and instantly fell in love with what The Orange Lawn Tennis Club evoked for her. Orange Lawn, founded in 1880, is one of only 14 grass courts clubs in the United States. It is truly a hidden gem right in our back yard!
The Orange Lawn Tennis Club is located on Ridgewood Road across from Flood’s Hill, a few blocks from South Orange’s town center. Nestled on 13 acres of manicured lawns and gardens, the historic Redmond Estate mansion offers a backdrop of historic charm and country elegance, all just a short commute from New York City.
Over a hundred years ago, the Orange Lawn Tennis Club was at the very heart of tennis. The campus was built and maintained to attract tennis royalty throughout the years. Arthur Ashe, Rod Laver, Stan Smith, John McEnroe all played the game here, as well as so many others.
It began with 10 meticulously-kept grass courts and over time, 10 har-tru and 5 lighted paddle courts for full season play have been added. You will even find people playing on a snowy day as the courts are heated! Full-time tennis pros are available for private lessons and they have clinics for every level. They also offer league play and inter-club tournaments.
The OLTC also offers a heated pool, which opens on Memorial Day weekend and stays open until 7 PM during the summer months. There is always a lifeguard on duty for the main pool and kiddie wading pool, so parents can put their minds at ease and relax. The poolside café offers snacks and weekend bar service. The lawn surrounding the pool is outfitted with lounge chairs, umbrellas, and tables.
It is a place for families and tennis enthusiasts alike to connect on the courts and in the clubhouse. There is something for everyone: from family summer BBQs to twilight social tennis followed by dinner and cocktails by the fire pit. You can also socialize, dine and entertain in the historic and cozy clubhouse and newly built grand ballroom, where Award-winning Executive Chef Richard Krug of Krug Catering oversees all of the dining events.
Family and individual membership packages are available with no initiation fee. All are encouraged to come for a visit and tour the historic grounds. Learn more about everything the Orange Lawn Tennis club has to offer here.