One of the perks of being a seeded player at the US Open is getting a private suite inside Arthur Ashe Stadium. Filip Krajinovic and his team have taken that luxury to new heights.
“The players are coming and asking, ‘What’s going on here?’” Krajinovic said. “They see that we have a good time.”
Krajinovic and his team, including coach Janko Tipsarevic, have made themselves at home in their suite. The first thing Tipsarevic did was order a speaker for what he calls their “apartment”. A few days later, he bought artificial flowers. A few days after that, the former World No. 8 ordered even more flowers. Then the Serbian purchased a red carpet for the entrance to their suite.
“Novak saw this and said, ‘Hey, why don’t you give me some flowers? Your suite looks awesome,’” Tipsarevic said of World No. 1 Novak Djokovic, their suite neighbour. “So I bought some more flowers and that’s basically how it happened.”
Tipsarevic had everything shipped from Amazon to the player hotel. The four-time ATP Tour champion loves flowers and he feels they bring positivity to the space and make everything look nicer.
“I thought about buying real flowers, but then we would have to water them, they need sunlight and everything else. That’s the main reason why I bought artificial flowers,” Tipsarevic said. “You couldn’t put them out as you wanted to. These artificial ones, I actually used Filip’s blister [wraps] and taped them all over the apartment so they don’t fall. It’s just easier with artificial flowers, even if the real ones are nicer.
“There’s a decent amount of time that we do spend on site. On the other hand, the time we spend at the hotel, we’re not allowed to go anywhere. So the nicer we can make our surroundings, the better it is for our mental state.”
It has worked out well for Krajinovic, who beat Dominic Thiem in straight sets en route to the quarter-finals of the Western & Southern Open. The 26th-seeded Serbian is into the third round of the US Open without losing a set.
“We knew we were going to be here at least three weeks and we just wanted to make a little bit of fun, make it that everything feels good,” Krajinovic said. “It’s jokes, but we are hanging out together and it’s really nice.”
Krajinovic says they have spent time relaxing in the suite, doing his massage and recovery work, eating and watching tennis. They are able to order food to the suite using a QR code they scan. After taking care of his media responsibilities following his second-round win, the 2017 Rolex Paris Masters finalist returned to his suite to watch Djokovic’s win against Kyle Edmund.
“That suite helps a lot. We are together, we are not with other people, we can order food and watch some good tennis,” Krajinovic said. “It means a lot to us and we are happy we have that suite.”
Krajinovic next plays seventh seed David Goffin for a spot in the fourth round.