MIAMI GARDENS (CBSMiami) – A new era of tennis in South Florida began on Monday.READ MORE: Miami Gardens Faith Leaders, Officials & Community Members Come Together To Remember Lives Lost To Gun Violence
The Miami Open has officially begun its tenure at Hard Rock Stadium.
As is always the case, fans will get to see their favorite players live and in person, but comfort was key when moving from Key Biscayne to Miami Gardens
The grounds include plenty of new restaurants, VIP lounges, a 14,000 seat center court inside the building and luxury seats. To some it feels like a Grand Slam event.READ MORE: Orange County Officials Searching For 19-Year-Old Miya Marcano
“It’s great to hear when they say we’re beating out this tournament or that tournament,” tournament director James Blake said of the fans’ reaction. “But we just want tennis to be the winner.”
In order to do that, the top players in the world have to show up.
Blake is hosting the men’s draw and he was just as happy to see big names like top seeded Novak Djokovic and Roger Federer up on the board.MORE NEWS: Broward School Officials Go Looking For Unenrolled Students
“There was player skepticism last year and I was surprised to see how much skepticism there was, but I remember back to when I was a player, you want things to stay the way that they are,” he said. “Once they’ve seen it now that makes a big difference. Once they get here. Word of mouth travels very quickly.”