Bulldogs Enjoy Trip To Spain
June 20, 2006
The men's and women's tennis teams recently returned from a 12-day international trip to Spain. Every four years the teams travel abroad to a different country to play tennis and explore the area. The past two trips have been to Australia and Hong Kong.
The teams departed JFK airport on May 30th and arrived in Madrid the morning of Wednesday, May 31st. After checking into a hotel in downtown Madrid, the teams were given a guided tour of the Royal Palace and the Prado Museum.
The next three days were all tennis at two different clubs in Madrid. The first two days the Bulldogs played on red clay at the Bolletieri Club against high nationally and sectionally ranked junior boys and girls from Spain. The third day the teams played at the Lopez-Maeso Club of Madrid on hard courts against a different group of junior players from the Madrid area.
Both teams were invited by the Yale Club of Madrid to a tapas café in the heart of Madrid one evening. It was a wonderful way to experience real Spanish food and to meet other Yalies in Spain!
On Sunday, June 4th the teams left Madrid and flew to Malaga. The hotel was right on the ocean so most people chose to relax on the beach or explore the town. That evening most of the players and coaches went to a bullfight....a real Spanish tradition!
The following day the teams had a full-day tour of the internationally renowned capital of Andalusia, Seville. It included seeing the gardens at Maria Luisa Park, the Plaza de Espana and a walking tour through the delightful district of Santa Cruz, the former Jewish Quarter. The teams also visited the Cathedral and the Almohade Aljama Mosque and the famous "Giralda". On Tuesday, the teams had another full-day tour of piecturesque Granada and the Alhambra before departing for Barcelona on Wednesday morning.
In Barcelona, the teams had two days to explore the city. The hotel was located in the heart of downtown so it provided access to all of the major sites - Gaudi's masterpieces, Las Ramblas, the waterfront, the Picasso Art Museum and all the wonderful shops and restaurants.
Some of the players shared their experiences from the trip
My favorite part of the trip was definitely bonding with my teammates as well as the men's team. I grew to know them in a way that I wouldn't have at school.
I feel so fortunate to be involved in a program that offers such an incredible opportunity. It allowed me to experience a foreign culture while fostering a greater sense of team unity.
My favorite event of the trip was the bull fight because it was something I don't think anyone had experienced before and it was a good insight into the culture. Overall, though, my favorite part was getting to spend time with the women's team, and then to get to know a lot of the men's team much better, and in turn knowing that the trip made us all a lot closer especially for the next years to come.
Specifically, my favorite part of the trip would have to be either the Prado Museum or the bullfight. But overall, I thought it was really neat how we as a team got to go to a different country and not just play tennis (which was fun), but also experience the culture by seeing such things as the Prado Museum and the bullfight. I think the trip was a success, and I had a lot of fun!!
My favorite part of the trip was playing with the kids and my teammates in the clinic at the Bollitieri Club in Las Rozas. It was a heartwarming and bonding experience, and it was a great opportunity to represent Yale to such wonderful and talented young players in Spain.
The trip was one of the most memorable moments of my life. Aside from being the first country I have traveled to in Europe, Spain opened up my eyes to a unique culture, history, and beautiful architecture that has allowed me to embrace the unfamiliar. I also couldn't have asked for better people to experience the trip with than my coaches and my teammates. I've learned a lot about Spain, my team, and myself on this trip and this proved that the trip was a priceless experience.
Head Coach Danielle Lund
The team's trip to Spain was an amazing opportunity for our players to experience a new culture and see a different part of the world. We had the chance to play on red clay, which was a learning experience for many of the players since it's a very different type of game. I think my favorite city we visited was Barcelona and in particular I enjoyed seeing the works of the great artist, Gaudi. Finally, I would like to thank the Yale Club of Madrid and the Yale Tennis Association for their support of the foreign trip and for their assistance in organizing our stay.