City Attorney cites violation of stay at home orders in shutting down of Riviera Tennis Club
By Sam Catanzaro
An elite Pacific Palisades country club has been ordered by the Los Angeles City Attorney’s office to shut down tennis operations after violating stay at home orders.
On Saturday, May 9 the Riviera Country Club reopened their tennis courts–with restrictions in place to slow the spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19)–for members to play singles only.
“By now you may have heard that The Riviera Tennis Club will be reopening to members (singles play only) on Saturday 5/9/2020 with a number of precautions in place. We are allowing our independent contracting pros to hit with members (with no more than 6 balls on the court), but we are not yet allowing non-members enrolled in our Academy to take lessons,” reads an email sent to tennis members by Collin Braun, Director of Junior Tennis.
On Tuesday, May 12 the City Attorney told the club they had to cease their tennis operations due to violating the City’s Safer-at-Home order. The order, which was revised on May 7, allowed for golf courses to open but not tennis courts.
Palisades News has reached out to the Riviera twice for comment but the club has not responded at the time of publishing.
An email sent to members from Riviera General Manager Don Smith, obtained by Palisades News, confirms that the tennis at the club has been shut down. In the letter, Smith says the reopening was a result of a misinterpretation of the May 7 revised order.
“I received a telephone call late this morning from Deputy City Attorney advising my interpretation of the city’s May 7th Safer-at-Home update is not correct as it pertains to private tennis operations. Unfortunately we will have to immediately close down our tennis operations until further notice,” Smith wrote. “We are hopeful that private tennis activity restrictions will soon be among those eased, but have no information on when that may be. In the meantime, Riviera’s tennis operations are immediately closed.”
According to the May 7 revised order “Golf is permitted; public and private course” within the City of Los Angeles. No mention of private tennis courts is included in the order, which expires May 15.
The City Attorney’s office could not immediately be reached for comment.
This story is still developing and will be updated as more information becomes available.