Tennis museum at Roland Garros
Need a break between two tennis matches at Roland Garros? Pay a visit to Roland Garros tennis museum (also called Tenniseum), situated near Gate B. It is open to the public free of charge from 10am to 7pm during the tournament.
The museum was created in 2003, I first visited it in 2005 or 2006 but haven’t since.
The permanent exhibition area, that has been totally revamped last year, features some player memorabilia, a few videos as well as some infos about tennis history and the future Roland Garros expansion.
Lacoste made a bet with his team captain about whether he would win his Davis Cup match against Australian James Anderson. What he bet – and lost – was a crocodile skin leather suitcase. Later, René Lacoste’s friend Robert George embroidered a crocodile onto a blazer that Lacoste wore for his matches.
Jacket with embroidered crocodile worn by René Lacoste:
Ball machine invented by René Lacoste in 1927:
Fançoise Durr’s dress, created by fashion designer Ted Tinling, 1970:
Chris Evert by Andy Warhol:
Bjorn Borg‘s legendary Fila outfit and Donnay racquet:
Le Coq Sportif racquet used by Yannick Noah when he won the French Open in 1983:
adidas shirt worn by Steffi Graf, 1999:
Roger Federer Nike outfit, 2007:
The evolution of tennis shoes, racquets and balls through the years:
Some pieces of art (???)
The temporary exhibit showcases three paintings of David Nash, who designed this year’s poster, and a film in which he explains what inspired him. The infamous poster is not even on display at the museum!
For whatever reason I couldn’t access the most interesting part of the museum, the new exhibition “Moi… Roland Garros”.
As you probably know, Roland Garros was not a tennis player, but an aviator. In 1913, he was the first to fly across the Mediterranean Sea from Fréjus in the south of France to Bizerte in Tunisia. To mark the 100th anniversary of that exploit, the FFT presents this exhibit that features an authentic reproduction of Roland Garros aircraft.
Compared to the Wimbledon museum, the Roland Garos museum is pretty disappointing. It’s OK for a little break but I wouldn’t pay to see such a little collection of tennis related artifacts.