One of the best parts of my job is traveling to different cities all around the world. Every city has its own unique character and culture, and throughout my years of playing tournaments, I’ve had opportunities to explore some of the world’s most well-known cities in Europe. I’d love to share my favorite things about each of these cities with you.
When in Rome...meet your life partner and fall in love! Or is that just me? Seriously, though, Rome is my favorite place in the world, and meeting Alexis there is definitely part of the reason why. If I could go anywhere in the world right now, it would be to Rome. It’s an incredibly dynamic city and I love visiting the historical sites, like the Colosseum and Trevi Fountain. Being able to share my favorite city with Olympia this spring has been the absolute best thing. Obviously, I can’t talk about Rome without talking about pizza and pasta (gluten-free, of course!). When I’m in Rome, I can literally eat pizza and pasta any time of day, and *especially* after a great day of training on those clay courts.
Ah, mon amie, Paris. If you love romance, gorgeous architecture, and decadent food, this is the city to visit. Fine dining (always with grape jelly!) is one of my favorite things to do in Paris...because they just do it so well! I also love trying all of the cute cafes scattered throughout the city; the coffee and people-watching are to-die-for. To balance out the amazing eating, I make time to stroll through the gorgeous Parisian parks and visit some of the best shopping streets in the world: Rue Saint-Honoré for the best boutiques and the Champs Élysées for beauty shops. I also love the Rue de Grenelle market, right near the Eiffel Tower, for treating myself to the most beautiful fresh flowers.
When I think of London, I think of tradition and royalty. In the U.S., we don’t have a royal family in the same way, so the pomp and circumstance of it all really fascinates me. I also really appreciate the love for tradition, like afternoon tea, or the Changing of the Guard, or passionate football (aka soccer) fans. When it comes to Grand Slams, I love playing on grass so Wimbledon holds a special place in my heart. And of course, I’ll always associate London with the 2012 Olympics and the indescribable experience of winning gold medals.