Racquet House Recap

By Liz Culley
Racquet House Rockefeller Center was the only US Open event that was also a home

They said putting a court in the middle of Rockefeller Center was impossible. It was too wild. People won’t be able to find it. It was going to rain. The players would be busy. It wasn’t a “real” court.  People will still be in the Hamptons…

That’s what the naysayers and the nonbelievers—those who didn’t find themselves drinking custom Boodles Bounce gin cocktails or  glass(es) of Domaines Ott rose on Friday August 26th at top of Rockefeller Plaza and on the stunning rooftop at Radio Park) said. 

And guess what? Everyone played. Hell, even CEO of BNP Paribas Jean Yves Fillion played in a full linen suit (no he did not remove his jacket) before heading over across town to kick it with John McEnroe. evian global ambassadors Emma Raducanu and Stan Wawrinka, both US Open Champions, took to the court for a “hit and giggle” (Co-Founder of Racquet Caitlin Thompson swears this is a thing people in tennis say) while greeting friends and fans. Eugenie Bouchard, Tommy Haas and sports legend Steve Nash played a few rounds of Canadian (get it?) doubles before hitting upstairs for the party, and they stopped to sign a few tennis balls and pose for photos with spectators and fans along the way.

Emily Ratajkowski and Grigor Dimitrov

The kick-off evening of Racquet House celebrated the launch of Rothy’s and evian’s new sustainable collection, made from roughly 70,000 repurposed evian water bottles from last year’s US Open. The limited-edition capsule collection includes shoes, hats, a racquet bag and duffle, most of which has already sold out.


Celebs like Emily Ratajkowski and Ivy Getty made appearances to check out the collection while tennis legend (and currently Serena William’s coach) Rennae Stubbs hung out with friends like Andrea Petkovic, Ayan Bloomfield and Grigor Dmitrov and enjoyed Shake Shack burgers and fries while listening to DJ Brianna Lance spin vibey French tracks. Guests enjoyed massages from Therabody, a special “Lemon Meringue Pie” CoolHaus ice cream flavor and created customized pins with energy crystals provided by Bay Area natives Smudge Wellness.

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The weekend continued by celebrating Yonex’s new EZONE 98 tennis racquet designed by Mari Osaka. Yonex and Mari invited Denis Shapovalov, Jessie Pegula, Hubie Hurkacz and Stevie Johnson during the day for clinics—in between hitting balls guests enjoyed iced Terra Kaffe coffees, Evian and Brave Robot ice cream cups (my personal favorite was the chocolate hazelnut).

Yonex players Casper Ruud, Belinda Bencic and Stan Wawrinka

When the sun set, Naomi and her family arrived to celebrate Mari and Yonex hosted a panel with Frances Tiafoe, Stan Wawrinka and Belinda Bencic. The pros chatted  with MC Prakash Amritraj about everything from sartorial choices to select showdowns. Guests enjoyed boozy gummies from Scoozie and folks like Elena Rybakina and French Open finalist Casper Ruud danced to legendary hip hop DJ (and tennis fanatic) Stretch Armstrong.

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After two nights of dancing, hitting balls, catching up with friends new and old— it was time to celebrate and unwind with our friends from Roederer on Sunday morning. Seated atop of the Radio Park grass court, Racquet’s founders—David Shaftel and Caitlin hosted guests like Samantha Weiss Hills of Domino Magazine, Dev Hynes (aka the Grammy award winning musician known as Blood Oragne), curator and Balcony mag cofounders Vicente Muñoz and Audrey Rose Smith, among others. Enjoying a brunch paired with Champagne Louis Roederer, Roederer Estate and Domaines Ott* I was fully bubbly (and happy) as we looked forward to the weeks to follow and closed out a truly special Racquet House weekend.

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Yes it rained a little and some of our friends were still enjoying one last weekend out of the city but the spirit of tennis, New York and Racquet rang through midtown and we can’t wait to see you again next year (or at the US Open finals weekend!).

Special Shout out to all of our partners (go check ‘em out, they wouldn’t have been there if we didn’t love them!): 

The 2022 Racquet House NYC Poster