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Official Review by Stefano Romagnoli, Stadium Journey Regional Correspondent
Stadio del Tennis in Rome was inaugurated April 27, 2010 with the presence of Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal, who were respectively number one and number two in the ATP ranking at that time. 2010 was also the 80th anniversary of the creation of the International of Italy and the 100th anniversary of the birth of the FIT, the Italian Tennis Federation founded May 18, 1910 in the building of the Tennis Club of Florence.
The Stadio del Tennis is on the site of the old Campo Centrale used from 1996 to 2007. Its construction took two years of work and by 2018 the venue will be also equipped with a cover.
The stadium is made of concrete, steel, and glass. It can hold up to 10,584 spectators on three rings (for the musical events, the stage is positioned on one of the short sides and the capacity is reduced to 7,000 persons).
Since 2011 the International of Italy hold the status of a “combined event,” where the men and women tennis professionals play in the same period and on the same courts.
The event attracts the best tennis players in the world. This is the roll of honor of the winners of the tournament since Stadio del Tennis was inaugurated: Nadal in 2010, 2012 and 2013, Djokovic in 2011 and in 2014 in the men’s field; Sanchez in 2010, Sharapova in 2011 and 2012, Serena Williams in 2013 and 2014 in the women’s field.
The stadium has also been used for matches of beach volleyball, volleyball and boxing. In addition, each summer, it is home to the musical and entertainment event known as “Il Centrale Live.”
The FANFARE scale is our metric device for rating each stadium experience. It covers the following:
Each area is rated from 0 to 5 stars with 5 being the best. The overall composite score is the "FANFARE Score".
Italy is considered by many as one of the best culinary cities in the world and in the area around the tournament there are many restaurants. We have some advice to give. Surely among the first dishes concider "bucatini all'amatriciana", "penne alla carbonara" and "spaghetti alla gricia." For a main course, go for lamb or "coda alla vaccinara." Finally, since the tournament is held in May, fans can spend an entire day in the sun and it can be quite exhausting. In between the various tennis matches we recommend a "grattachecca," crushed ice combined with large pieces of fruit, typical of the city of Rome and unavailable elsewhere in Italy.
During the International of Italy, in the Foro Italico, there are several dining areas. On the first floor of Stadio del Tennis there is the hospitality area that, depending on the event, can be reserved for athletes, press or guests.
Visibility is excellent from every section of the venue: Tribuna Tevere, Tribuna Monte Mario, Tribuna Nord, and Tribuna Sud.
The sounds produced by the racket on the ball is amplified by the shape of the structure and by the placement of the court below the ground level.
Unique to the atmosphere of the International of Italy is the beauty of the other courts on which the tournament takes place, the buildings around them that bring to mind the greatness of spectator sports of ancient Rome.
This is the most prestigious Italian tennis tournament, part of the ATP World Tour Masters 1000 and with Monte Carlo and Roland Garros is the so-called "Red Slam."
There are many beautiful sights to see at the Foro Italico. Some of our recommendations include the Stadio Olimpico, home of AS Roma and SS Lazio, but also the facility that hosted the 1960 Olympic Games, and the final of the FIFA World Cup in 1990.
Sports fans should also visit the Stadio dei Marmi with its many statues or Stadio del Nuoto which has been expanded on several occasions and was the venue of the World Championships.
Be sure to also see Farnesina, which houses the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Italian Republic.
Among the casual and ardent tennis fans you will also find members of royal families, similar to what you may find the crowd at Wimbledon or Monte Carlo. As Rome is a major film production center, you will also be likely to see famous actors and actresses in the stands.
Reaching the Foro Italico is really easy. For those coming from outside Rome, once you exit from the A1 or A24 highways, just take the ring road and follow signs to Stadio Olimpico.
All around the Foro Italico there are many car parks.
There isn't a subway that leads directly to Stadio del Tennis, but with line A you can get off at Flaminio, take a bus or a tram to Piazza Antonio Mancini, then it's just a short walk across the Ponte Duca d'Aosta.
The 2014 edition of the International of Italy at Stadio del Tennis hosted 37 matches with a total attendance of 115,000 spectators.
For the 2015 edition of the tournament prices range from 30.00 euro for a seat in Distinti Tevere for the first round to more than 400.00 euro for the Exclusive Suite in the days of the finals.
There is also the opportunity to buy the ticket package (Distinti) with hotel (3 star hotel with breakfast included) from 89.50 euro. This deal also combines additional benefits in the stands of Villaggio Commerciale that will be prepared during the tournament.
The Latin phrase, "Roma caput mundi" (Rome is the capital of the world) is sufficient to describe all the extras that the spectator of the International of Italy can discover.
Obligatory stops when in Rome are to the Colosseum and the Vatican. Rome is of course one of the most beautiful and historic cities in the world, so there is certainly plenty to see besides the tennis tournament.
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