Padel Versus Pickeball: Who is winning?
Billionaire Wayne Boich Advocates Padel Over Tennis
Wayne Boich, a former tennis player turned billionaire businessman, is a strong advocate for the sport of padel. In 2014, when constructing his Miami Beach waterfront mansion, he chose to build a padel court instead of the initially planned tennis court.
Boich's 15,000 square-foot Miami Beach mansion, often hosting celebrity-filled parties with guests such as Kim Kardashian, Leonardo DiCaprio, and Kylie Jenner, has become an exclusive clubhouse for padel enthusiasts.
On New Year's Day, Ivanka Trump was seen at Boich's Miami Beach mansion ready to play padel with the pros. Boich is proud to have introduced many people to the sport and sees his home as a hub for players of all backgrounds, including professional athletes, actors, and actresses. In a statement to the Post, Boich said, "It's great to see so many of them take to the sport, particularly recently.
The CEO of Boich Investment Group discovered padel during a trip to Europe 10 years ago and fell in love with the game. In 2022, he established the Blockchain.com World Padel Tour Miami Open, attracting high-profile attendees such as Ludacris, Jimmy Buffett, Alonzo Mourning, and Rick Ross.
Miami has become a hub for padel, with the Ritz-Carlton Key Biscayne featuring three courts and the Wynwood Padel Club as a popular networking spot. The Pro Padel League recently announced its Miami franchise, owned by financier Ronnie Strasser.
Padel's rise in popularity is due to its social and intimate atmosphere, according to the CEO of Boich Investment Group. The smaller court and glass walls give padel a more personal feel for both players and spectators. Padel was created in 1969 by Mexican businessman Enrique Corcuera in Acapulco and later exported to Spain by Alfonso de Hohenlohe. Argentine entrepreneur Julio Menditenguia popularized the sport in Argentina, where it now ranks second in popularity to soccer.
Padel's Future in America: Bright and Limitless
Enthusiasts like Boich and Strasser believe that padel has a bright future in America, with plans to promote growth through opening clubs, pop-ups, and hosting tournaments to introduce the sport to more people.r
Padel, like pickleball, needs four players and a smaller court but it's faster and more intense. The racquets are different, and playing points off the glass (like in squash) is allowed. Athletes use padel to stay in shape as it requires quick reflexes. Miami Heat's Butler learned padel from soccer star Neymar and plays it regularly with him. When not playing with Neymar, he can be found playing at Boich's house.
Believers of padel's success in America, like Boich and Strasser, are optimistic about its future. The goal is to promote the sport by establishing clubs, temporary venues, and hosting tournaments to reach a larger audience. "The future of padel has no limits," they say.
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