With only a week to go until Australian Open 2019 kicks off, Melbourne Park is on top of its game and ready to host the biggest names in world tennis.
Acting Premier Tim Pallas joined Australian Open Tournament Director Craig Tiley today to tour new facilities delivered as part of the Andrews Labor Government’s $972 million upgrade of Melbourne Park.
The new Eastern Annexe at Rod Laver Arena, dubbed the Player Pod, delivers a whole new welcome experience with a grand entrance and expanded concourse to one of Australia’s most iconic sport and entertainment venues.
Rod Laver Arena now has greater protection from inclement weather with the newly upgraded retractable roof which can open and close in under five minutes.
This world-class redevelopment will make sure that Australian Open 2019 is bigger and better than ever.
Australian Open 2019 takes place from 14 to 27 January and is the largest annual sporting event in the Southern Hemisphere and the biggest sporting event in the world in January.
It will feature the world’s best tennis stars such as Serena Williams and Roger Federer, and home-grown aces Ashleigh Barty and Alex de Minaur.
Some of Australia’s biggest music acts and artists from around the globe will be performing at the AO Live Stage, starting on the eve of the tournament.
This year’s Open will also debut the inaugural AO Sports Film Festival, providing tennis fans with even more entertainment – cementing Melbourne’s place as the sport and events capital of Australia.
Each year the Australian Open injects more than $290 million into the Victorian economy and creates more than 1000 jobs, making it one of the most significant major events in the state.
Work on the final stage of the upgrade will start after this year’s Australian Open and includes a new multi-purpose 5,000-seat show court arena and a new function and media centre.
This guarantees the Australian Open will remain in Melbourne until at least 2036.
Quotes attributable to Acting Premier Tim Pallas
“This year’s Open is going to be bigger and better than ever. From top sport to top music to top food and recreation – I urge everyone to get down to Melbourne Park and celebrate this great event.”
“This is about more than just world-class tennis – this is about creating thousands of jobs and bringing thousands of visitors to our state to appreciate everything we have to offer.”
Quote attributable to Australian Open Tournament Director Craig Tiley
“I’d like to thank the Victorian government for their ongoing support of the Australian Open. We can’t wait to show off the new-look Melbourne Park as we welcome not just the players, but fans from Melbourne and Victoria, across Australia and around the world over the next few weeks.”