Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Indian Wells vs Miami Open Tennis Tournament? March Masters Tennis - California vs Florida?

Indian Wells, CA or Miami, FL

The First two ATP Masters 1000 Events of the USA occur just a couple weeks apart. Although these are both offer top tier point for the top tennis pros on the men and women's tour, they are also very polar in many ways. Nearly all of the Top 50 players in the world will attend both events.

West Coast vs East Coast

I have friends on both sides of the fence, some prefer one over the other. If you live on the West Coast of the US and a major tennis fan, then Indian Wells is an ideal spot to check out. If you are on the East Coast and especially in Florida, then the Miami Open is great to experience.

Quick Comparison of the two March Masters:

BNP Paribas Open

"5th Grand Slam"
My Trip & Team Tourney Review
HD Pictures | Discount Tickets

Pros:
  • Excellent Practice Court Views (at eye level)
  • Premium Facilities and Show Court Stadiums
  • Low Humidity, Dry Heat
  • Outdoors: Hiking, Golf, Tennis
  • West Coast

Cons:
  • Expensive Location! Avg Hotels @ ~$200-$350/nt
  • 2 Hours Drive from nearest major airport (San Diego or LA) not counting PSP
  • Less Nightlife

    Background:
    Indian Wells is a bit more of the rich, active retiree destination - even most of the volunteers are over 55. Quite a different energy level than the younger Spring Break crowd in Miami.

    On the other hand, if you like a more laid back atmosphere with more outdoor scenery, then Southern California is perfect. Also Joshua Tree and Coachella are both relatively close by.

Miami Open

"South American Slam"
Trip Review and Tips | HD Pictures | Tickets

Pros:
  • Less crowded overall
  • Courts are all close to each other
  • Cheaper Ticket Packages Available
  • Miami Beach Town
  • East Coast
Cons:
  • VERY Humid with chance of heavy, quick thunderstorms (*run for cover*)
  • Night matches are very limited (main stadium only...~2 matches max)
  • Parking is very limited or expensive / shuttles far away at tournament (average 15-20 mins)

Background:
There is more of a Latin / South American crowd at the tournament and around Miami. The fans are generally younger than at Indian Wells. The evening atmosphere is the "seen and be seen" South Beach fare. Usually, there are some large music/techno festivals held during this time of the year.

Overview and Summary


Fans Comfort: IW, much more enjoyable and cooler during the day
Overall Trip Cost: MIA, has slightly cheaper options available on the whole

Main Stadium Quality: IW (Miami is more open and central) / IW has better box seats
Secondary Show Courts: IW (*more reserved stadiums mean more ticket costs)
Practice Court Views: IW (Miami has lots of mesh fences between fans and players)

Food at Tournament: MIA (lots of cuisine choices, whereas IW has more shops/food off-site plus a few new fancy restaurants on the grounds)

Souvenirs: MIA - large store with merchandise in the shade with A/C;
Fan Zone Area: Tied; Jumbotron at MIA, Better lounge chairs at IW
Swag / Freebies: MIA, more fun gifts; IW has Tennis-Warehouse free racket demo court*

Daytime activities: IW
Nightlife activities: MIA

Overall Winner - Indian Wells

Indian Wells: A-
Miami: B

If you've been to one or both of these tournaments, please leave a comment below!

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