Those who frequent Water Street in Southwest DC know the area for it's nighttime vibe of clubs, summer nights along the Potomac, seafood restaurants, and Hogates.
Hogates, the once lively water front hot spot known for dining and dancing, resided at 800 Water Street for more than two decades and was a popular spot for Sunday brunches and after work happy hours. It was closed (for various reasons) and reopened as H20 in another life, but was short lived and eventually closed its doors in 2008 after a rash of violence plagued the establishment.
The site was eventually demolished last year.
Everything Old is New Again
Resurrecting in its place this summer, and adding further life to Southwest's renovation project, is the new home of the Washington Kastles tennis team.
"Kastles Stadium at The Wharf" will feature world class tennis along the Potomac at its newest venue beginning July 5, 2011.
The Kastles' previous home was the site of the old DC Convention Center on the corner of 9th Street, NW which is itself undergoing construction for a mix-used community.
Kastles owner, Mark Ein is pleased with the Kastles' newest location.
"We were looking for something that would take the Kastles experience to even higher levels, and as soon as we came down here and saw the opportunity to build the stadium on the water's edge with views of the Jefferson Memorial, and the Washington Monument it just seemed like the perfect place. We couldn't be happier to be here."
The new stadium will be neighbor to future hotels, cafes, offices, and residences, in a mixed-used setting and will offer parking underneath the stadium along with the existing three parking garages across the street.
"So there's more than enough parking for our fans each and every night", added Ein. (Speaking of parking: Thanks to the staff of the Washington Kastles PR team who footed the bill for our street parking while covering today's event).
The soon-to-be-built stadium is also accessible via the Waterfront-SEU and L’Enfant Plaza metro stations.
The venue is sited near the Jefferson Junior High. Several students were on hand to demonstrate Quick Start Tennis, a module the Kastles, for the past three seasons, have hosted to more than 800 local children at tennis clinics.
A core principal of the Kastles' franchise, and its mission, is to give back to those less fortunate in the Washington region. Since its inception, the team has donated more than 6,000 match tickets, 3,000 tennis rackets and cash grants and other donations totaling more than $500,000 to local charities, youth groups and armed forces organizations.
The 2009 World Team Tennis champions Washington Kastles bring several top level tennis players to the Nation's Capital. Among them, 17th ranked Sam Querry; 27-time Grand Slam Champion, Venus Williams and 21-time Grand Slam Champion, Serena Williams.
We asked Ein if Serena Williams, out with a foot injury that caused her to miss several tennis matches since last July, would be ready to compete with the Kastles this season.
PN Hoffman Construction Development.
"She's planning to be ready by the time our season starts, and we're counting on her. We really love having Serena being a part of our team and hope she will be here this summer", Ein said.
After the upcoming World Team Tennis Roster Draft on March 15, 2011, where teams select the remainder of their players, the Kastles are confident they will be a strong contender for the 2011 World Team Tennis Championship. Back by popular demand, Anna Kournikova and John McEnroe will also return DC to do battle against the 2011 Kastles this July.
Visit www.washingtonkastles.com for news and updates. Also visit www.wharfdc.com.
Update -- Serena Williams talks about her health scare and how she's recovering.