How Venus Williams Spends Her Time Off the Tennis Court While Traveling

Venus Williams
Venus Williams . Photo:

Bryan Bedder/Getty Images

Even though tennis icon Venus Williams has been playing hard all summer across the country in preparation for the US Open, she has the perfect way to blow off steam while traveling.

"As I’ve been on tour, I've been going to concerts," she told Travel + Leisure in a recent exclusive interview. "I saw The Weeknd, I saw Red Hot Chili Peppers, Tears for Fears, Rage Against the Machine, so many different kinds of music."

"I listen to a bunch of stuff, and I’ve been in heaven," she added, mentioning that she may even try to see Pearl Jam at their upcoming Madison Square Garden show while she's in New York.

Williams, 42, who will be facing off with Alison Van Uytvanck at Arthur Ashe Stadium on Tuesday, told T+L that, even though it's been two years since she's been on the New York tennis stage, she's ready.

"I have not been back to the Open since 2020," she said. "I think in the beginning I felt like, ‘Do I belong here?' And then when I walked on site today, I was like, 'This is my house, I own this place, open the doors, I'm home!' So, it felt really cool to make that transition."

The tennis icon and fashion designer won the tournament in 2000 and 2001. This time around, it's set to be a family affair as her sister, Serena, took the court for her first US Open match last night —  in what's expected to be her last tournament before retirement. The two will also be playing doubles together, for the first time since 2018, in a match against Czech Republic's Lucie Hradecka and Linda Noskova tomorrow.

As for time off the court, her schedule may not allow for typical sightseeing when traveling around the world, however, she told T+L that Rome and Paris are among her favorite cities to stop in and see the sights.

"I love Hong Kong, it's a great place to eat and explore and run," she added. "I love that you can take a different running trail there, it's like New York except with mountains and ocean and a very foreign cool vibe."

The tennis star, who chatted with T+L at Manhattan's historic Lotte New York Palace, also sat for a panel discussion alongside her sister and other pros including Rafael Nadal, Naomi Osaka, and Nick Kyrgios.

Nick Kygrios, Naomi Osaka, Rafael Nadal, Venus Williams, and Serena Williams
Nick Kygrios, Naomi Osaka, Rafael Nadal, Venus Williams, and Serena Williams.

Bryan Bedder/Getty Images

Usually, as is tradition ahead of the US Open, instead of sitting down for a chat, the stars face off in a friendly badminton competition in the hotel's courtyard. However, this year it was under construction as part of the hotel's major restoration.

During the discussion, which was moderated by Today show anchors Sheinelle Jones and Dylan Dreyer, Williams mentioned that, while her travel schedule can be taxing, she doesn't mind the perks that come along with it.

"In a hotel, people clean and make your bed," she joked. "We go to great places, all the majors [in] Paris, London, and New York, if you complain about this, then I don't know what to tell you."


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