Sunrise over Alice Marble courts in San Francisco, CA.
The Definitive Guide to San Francisco Tennis Courts
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San Francisco offers a wide variety of tennis courts for residents and visitors to enjoy, with over 150 public courts located throughout the city's diverse neighborhoods. From the recently renovated courts at the Lisa & Douglas Goldman Tennis Center in Golden Gate Park to the scenic courts perched above the city at Alta Plaza Park, there are options for players of all levels looking to hit the courts year-round in San Francisco's mild climate.

San Francisco Public Courts

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San Francisco has an extensive network of public tennis courts located throughout the city. Here is a list of some of the most notable public tennis court locations:
  • Alice Marble Tennis Courts at George Sterling Park in Russian Hill - 4 courts
  • Alta Plaza Park in Pacific Heights - 3 courts
  • Balboa Park in the Outer Mission - multiple courts in prime condition
  • Corona Heights Park in the Castro - courts with sweeping downtown views
  • Crocker Amazon Playground in the Excelsior - 3 lighted courts that can be reserved
  • Dolores Park in the Mission - 6 courts, 3 reservable, busy courts with great views
  • Glen Canyon Park in Glen Park - 2 recently resurfaced courts with a hitting wall and wind protection
  • Golden Gate Park Tennis Complex - 21 courts, the largest public facility in the city
  • Hamilton Recreation Center - 2 reservable lighted courts
  • Julius Kahn Playground in the Presidio - 4 courts
  • Margaret Osborne DuPont Park in the Outer Richmond - 4 regulation courts with ample parking
  • Mission Dolores Park in the Mission - popular and busy courts, well-lit for night play
  • Moscone Recreation Center in the Marina - 4 reservable lighted courts
  • Mountain Lake Park in the Richmond - 4 courts
  • Parkside Square near Pine Lake Park - 4 courts, part of fully ADA-accessible playground
  • Potrero Hill Recreation Center - 2 courts
  • West Sunset Playground - 2 lighted courts
In total, there are over 150 public tennis courts located across San Francisco's neighborhoods, offering a wide range of options for tennis players of all levels to enjoy a match in the city's pleasant climate. Many of the city's courts can be reserved for a small fee while others are available for free play on a first-come, first-served basis.
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The Mission: Dolores Park Tennis Courts

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Dolores Park, originally known as Mission Park, has a long history dating back to the 1800s. The park has undergone many changes over the years, including the addition of tennis courts in the early 20th century. The first tennis courts were built in Dolores Park between 1909-1915. This was part of a series of improvements made to the park during this time period, which also included the addition of concrete pathways and a children's playground to replace an old wading pool. The tennis courts have remained a fixture in Dolores Park since their initial construction over a century ago. In the 1920s, basketball courts were also added near the tennis courts. This area of the park has been popular with families and children ever since due to the playground and sports facilities. As part of a $20.5 million renovation project that began in 2014, the tennis courts were upgraded along with many other features of Dolores Park. The fully renovated park reopened in January 2016 with six refurbished tennis courts available for public use. Three of the six courts are reservable. Today, the Dolores Park tennis courts remain an important part of the park's recreational offerings. Situated in the vibrant Mission neighborhood, the courts provide a place for local residents to play tennis in a scenic setting with views of the downtown skyline. The park's tennis facilities, along with the basketball court, soccer fields, playground, and other amenities, make Dolores Park a hub for sports, cultural activities, and community gatherings that are integral to the fabric of the neighborhood.
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Russian Hill: Alice Marble Tennis Courts

The Alice Marble Tennis Courts, located in San Francisco's Russian Hill neighborhood, are named after the legendary American tennis player Alice Marble. Situated in George Sterling Park, the courts offer stunning views of the Marina and North Beach neighborhoods along with glimpses of the San Francisco Bay. Alice Marble (1913-1990) was a dominant force in women's tennis during the late 1930s. She pioneered an aggressive serve-and-volley style of play and shocked the tennis world with her preference for wearing shorts instead of the traditional skirts. Marble's illustrious career included winning the Triple Crown at Wimbledon in 1939 (singles, women's doubles, and mixed doubles titles), four U.S. singles championships, and 12 U.S. Open and 5 Wimbledon titles overall in singles and doubles. She was inducted into the International Tennis Hall of Fame in 1964. The tennis courts bearing Marble's name have recently been rebuilt as part of the San Francisco Public Utility Commission's replacement of the reservoir beneath them. The original reservoir dated back to the 1860s, while the current one provides drinking water for the Marina district and serves as an emergency source for fire services. Some interesting facts about Alice Marble and the courts named in her honor:
  • Marble was a California native who honed her skills on the public tennis courts of San Francisco's Golden Gate Park as a youth in the 1920s.
  • She won numerous California junior championships before gaining national prominence in the 1930s.
  • In 1950, Marble wrote a scathing editorial in the American Lawn Tennis magazine denouncing the sport's segregation and advocating for African American player Althea Gibson to be allowed to compete in the U.S. Championships. Gibson went on to become the first African American player to win Grand Slam titles.
  • Marble coached tennis great Billie Jean King early in King's career.
  • In 1987, the Palm Desert Resort Center Court was dedicated in Marble's honor in a ceremony attended by Althea Gibson.
  • The current Alice Marble Tennis Courts in Russian Hill Park feature four courts available for public use in a picturesque hilltop setting.
From her roots on the public courts of San Francisco to her reign as the queen of tennis in the late 1930s, Alice Marble left an indelible mark on the sport. The tennis courts named in her honor serve as a fitting tribute to her legacy and provide a scenic spot for today's players to enjoy the game she helped popularize.
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Pacific Heights: Alta Plaza Park Courts

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Alta Plaza Park, located in San Francisco's Pacific Heights neighborhood, features three hard surface tennis courts situated in the center of the park. The courts are part of the park's recreational offerings, which also include a children's playground, basketball court, large grass field, terraced lawns, and an off-leash dog play area. The park itself has an interesting history. Prior to becoming a park, the site operated as a rock quarry until 1877 when the City of San Francisco purchased the 12-acre parcel for park development. However, it took another 30 years before the park was transformed into the terraced plaza design conceived by John McLaren, who is best known for his work on Golden Gate Park. Alta Plaza Park is bounded by Clay, Jackson, Scott and Steiner streets. A grand staircase rises midway along the southern edge of the park from Pierce Street, climbing the terraced southern slope and offering panoramic views of the city and San Francisco Bay from the top. Wheelchair access to the park is available from the Scott and Jackson street entrances. One interesting bit of Hollywood history involving Alta Plaza Park revolves around the filming of the 1972 movie "What's Up, Doc?" starring Barbra Streisand and Ryan O'Neal. In one of the film's signature scenes, the characters drive a Volkswagen Beetle, a taxicab, a limousine and a convertible down the grand staircase. The scene was shot without permission and the cars ended up damaging the steps, with remnants of the destruction still visible today. The Alta Plaza Park tennis courts provide a convenient spot for local residents to play tennis in a beautiful, historic park setting with stunning views of San Francisco. Combined with the park's other amenities like the playground, basketball court, and off-leash dog area, the courts help make Alta Plaza a recreational hub for the Pacific Heights community and visitors alike.
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Golden Gate Park: Goldman Tennis Center

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The Golden Gate Park Tennis Center has a rich history dating back to 1894, when it first opened as a place for players of all ages and skill levels to learn, play and compete. The iconic location has hosted many legendary players over the years, including Billie Jean King, Rosie Casals, and Peanut Louie Harper. In 2019, a major $27 million renovation project began to modernize and upgrade the aging facility. The project includes 17 new USTA-regulation courts, a sunken feature court with permanent seating, a dedicated pickleball court, and a 7,800 square foot clubhouse. Night play will also be possible for the first time thanks to the addition of court lighting. Funding for the renovation has come from a variety of generous donors, including major contributions from the Lisa and Douglas Goldman Fund, Taube Philanthropies, the San Francisco Recreation and Park Department, the Koret Foundation, Jackie and Joby Pritzker, and the Fisher Family, among many others. In total, over $30 million was raised to complete the project and establish a maintenance fund. The newly renovated facility, now named the Lisa & Douglas Goldman Tennis Center, opened on March 3, 2021. It will provide a state-of-the-art hub for the San Francisco tennis community, with programming for youth, seniors, and players of all backgrounds and abilities. By investing in this historic tennis center, the city and the project's many donors have ensured that it will remain an integral part of Golden Gate Park and continue to nurture a love for the game for generations to come.
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Hunters Point: Legendary Courts

The Hunters Point tennis courts have a rich history dating back nearly a century. Originally built in the 1920s, these courts were a vibrant gathering place for the African American community in the Bayview-Hunters Point neighborhood during the mid-20th century.
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In 1987, tennis legend Arthur Ashe visited the courts to help inaugurate a program by the National Junior Tennis League (now called Youth Tennis Advantage).
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Ashe spent time with the local kids, leaving a lasting impact. "Two things I remember about that day is how incredible Arthur was with everyone, especially the kids," recalled Mike Skinner, the executive director of Youth Tennis Advantage. "And they really paid attention to him." However, over the years the courts fell into disrepair. It took a dedicated five-year effort by community members and organizations to secure the funding and permissions needed to restore them to their former glory. Seth Socolow of San Franciscans for Sport Recreation said "This is our first project in Hunters Point and we're just really excited to be in Hunters Point because a lot of people forget about this part of the city, and we haven't." The $7 million restoration project brought the courts back to life, resurfacing them to the same condition as when they first opened with Ashe's help 37 years ago in 1987. The reopening ceremony in March 2024 was attended by three San Francisco mayors - London Breed, Art Agnos, and Willie Brown, showing the importance of this historic community asset. With the restored courts now open again, Youth Tennis Advantage has a goal of enrolling 50 neighborhood kids in their tennis and academics program this year, with hopes to double that number next year. The Hunters Point courts' revival ensures that they will continue to serve the community and honor the legacy of greats like Arthur Ashe who graced them decades ago.
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Top Courts with Scenic Views

Some of San Francisco's most scenic tennis courts offer breathtaking views of the city skyline, Golden Gate Bridge, and the Bay. The Alice Marble Courts in Russian Hill sit high atop George Sterling Park, providing a stunning panorama of the Marina and North Beach neighborhoods along with glimpses of the Bay. The courts at Corona Heights Park in the Castro offer sweeping downtown views, while the Alta Plaza Park courts in Pacific Heights boast vistas of the Marina and Alcatraz. For a unique perspective, the courts at Dolores Park in the Mission are sunken below street level but still provide picturesque views of the downtown skyline and surrounding neighborhoods.
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Best Courts for Night Play

For players looking to hit the courts after dark, San Francisco has several great options with lighted tennis facilities. The Lisa & Douglas Goldman Tennis Center in Golden Gate Park features 16 lighted courts that can be reserved for a small fee. In the Mission District, the recently renovated courts at Dolores Park are well-lit and open late, perfect for an evening match. For a more low-key option, the courts at Crocker Amazon Playground in the Excelsior neighborhood offer free play on 3 lighted courts that can be reserved in advance. Other notable night play spots include the courts at Hamilton Recreation Center, Moscone Recreation Center, and West Sunset Playground which all have lighted courts available for evening games.
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Historic Tennis Locations

San Francisco boasts several historic tennis locations that have played an important role in the city's rich sporting heritage. The recently reopened tennis courts at Hunters Point are the latest example of efforts to preserve and revitalize these significant sites.
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Originally built in the 1920s, the Hunters Point tennis courts were a popular gathering spot for the neighborhood's African American community during the mid-20th century. Tennis legends like Arthur Ashe and Charlie Pasarell played on the courts, which fell into disrepair in recent decades.
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A $7 million restoration project has brought the facility back to life, with resurfaced courts, new lighting, and a clubhouse.
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Other notable historic tennis sites in San Francisco include the Golden Gate Park Tennis Center, which dates back to 1894 and has hosted greats like Billie Jean King and Rosie Casals. The center recently underwent a $27 million renovation. The Alice Marble Courts in Russian Hill, named for the 1930s tennis star, and the Alta Plaza Park courts in Pacific Heights are also historically significant public facilities that continue to serve their communities today. By investing in the restoration and upkeep of these cherished tennis landmarks, San Francisco is ensuring that they will endure as vital recreational assets and living links to the city's sporting past. The reopening of the Hunters Point courts and the renovations at Golden Gate Park demonstrate a commitment to preserving public tennis in San Francisco for future generations of players.
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Bay Area Tennis Pros

The Bay Area has produced several notable professional tennis players over the years. CiCi Bellis, who grew up in the area, reached a career-high WTA ranking of No. 35 in 2017 and won her first WTA title in 2016 at the Hawaii Open. Sam Querrey, born in San Francisco, achieved a career-high ATP ranking of No. 11 and has won 10 singles titles on the tour. Other pros with Bay Area roots include Rosie Casals, originally from San Francisco, who won 12 Grand Slam doubles titles in the 1960s and 70s and was inducted into the International Tennis Hall of Fame. Brad Gilbert, raised in Piedmont, reached a career-high ranking of No. 4 and won 20 singles titles before going on to a successful coaching career. The Bay Area has also fostered the early development of many top players. Mackenzie McDonald, the 2016 NCAA singles and doubles champion out of UCLA, trained in the area as a junior. Former world No. 1 and 2018 US Open champion Naomi Osaka also spent time training in the region during her youth. With a rich tennis history, a vibrant junior development scene, and world-class facilities like the newly renovated Lisa & Douglas Goldman Tennis Center in San Francisco's Golden Gate Park, the Bay Area continues to nurture promising young talent and produce professional players who make their mark on the global stage.
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