For tennis enthusiasts, January means one thing only: The Australian Open. And with this year’s tournament just around the corner it’s time to start making plans. So from Melbourne accommodation to who is playing and when, here’s everything you need to know to make the most out of your 2019 Australian Open.
The Australian Open: A Brief History
The first Australian Open tournament was held at the Warehouseman’s Cricket Ground in Melbourne in November 1905. It was first known as the Australasian Championships, then in 1927 it became the Australian Championships and finally in 1969 it came to be the Australian Open.
Over the years, the tournament has been staged in five Australian and two New Zealand cities: Melbourne (55 times), Sydney (17 times), Adelaide (14 times), Brisbane (7 times), Perth (3 times), Christchurch (1906) and Hastings (1912). In 1972, it was decided that the tournament would henceforth be held at Melbourne every year.
Since then it has grown into the biggest annual sporting event in the Southern Hemisphere. Last year it broke the record for the highest attendance at a Grand Slam event with 743,667 people attending the 2018 tournament.
Who, what, when?
The 2019 Australian Open tournament will commence on January 14 and close on January 27. All finals will take place between Friday, January 25 and Sunday, January 27.
The top four seeds in the men’s singles are Novak Djokovic, Rafael Nadal, Roger Federer and Alexander Zverev. The number one seed for the women’s singles is Simona Halep followed by Angelique Kerber, Caroline Wozniacki and Elina Svitolina.
Matches will be played across the Rod Laver Arena, Margaret Court Arena, Melbourne Arena and Outside Courts.
Where to watch
Any self-respecting tennis enthusiast will have already thought about purchasing tickets to many of the matches but for those of us who weren’t quite lucky enough to get tickets, you can still soak up the atmosphere in bars and events across the country.
The Racquet Club
This free annual event takes place at Birrarung Marr on Melbourne’s Yarra River. With a massive screen in the middle of the park, you can soak up the exciting atmosphere, cool down with some refreshing drinks, listen to some DJs and watch some grade-A tennis.
The Common Man @ South Wharf
This popular bar with a fantastic rooftop cinema is one of the best places to be during the Australian Open. Entry is free, the atmosphere is great and there are always deals on their great food and drinks.
The Pineapple Hotel, Brisbane
Just because you can’t be in Melbourne for the tournament, it doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy the atmosphere. If you happen to be on holiday in Brisbane during this year’s Australian Open, head over to the Pineapple Hotel to catch all the live action on their big screens. And if you need somewhere to stay, our Brisbane apartments are just a seven minute cab ride away!
Make a holiday out of it
Whether you’ve got tickets or just want to soak up the atmosphere, why not make a holiday out of this year’s Australian Open by staying in serviced apartments in Melbourne?
Of course, as with any major event, getting your accommodation early is key. At Punthill, we have a range of apartment hotels in Melbourne that cater to all kinds of needs. For those who want to be right in the heart of the action we have apartments in Melbourne CBD which are all less than 30 minutes walk from the Rod Laver Arena and Birrarung Marr.
Our Melbourne accommodation apartments in the inner suburbs are also close by, or for families who want to be a little further afield and away from the crowds, we have Melbourne Hotels across various other suburbs too.
So what are you waiting for? Get booking and enjoy the Southern Hemisphere’s biggest sporting event in style!