PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — With pickleball establishing itself as a popular sport rather than a short-lived craze, some long-time pickleball enthusiasts have found their favorite courts crowded with new participants.
One rental company has allowed Portland homeowners to list their pickleball and tennis courts online for players who want more privacy while playing a game.
The company, Swimply, previously held a reputation as the “Airbnb for Swimming Pools.” But when they launched private court rentals this summer, they gained an additional title as the “Airbnb for Pickleball.”
Stuart Doty began using the platform to list his Portland swimming pool back in December 2020. He still accepts rentals for the indoor pool, which has a 5-star rating and hosts swimming lessons throughout the year.
However, it wasn’t until this year that he listed his pickleball and tennis court that was once an active rock quarry.
“When we moved in, it was in pretty rough shape so we had to go out and find the right person to store it,” Doty said. “It’s going to be something that we probably work on every other year just to keep it in shape, but it’s worth it.”
Doty recognized that pickleball’s increasing popularity has prompted the opening of more indoor courts, such as The People’s Courts — a 48,000-square-foot warehouse that launched in Northeast Portland in August.
Despite this, he said visiting a privately-owned court allows players to be “tucked away from the city noise” and “zone out and be with their sport.”
“If you go into a public court, you’re gonna have a lot of hustle and bustle from the cars moving by, or a lot of people that are trying to use the court as well,” Doty said. “So for those that just want to work on their craft or just really have an exclusive experience, I know it’s pretty unique in that way.”
For those who aren’t interested in playing outdoor pickleball in the fall, Doty said he rents out his indoor swimming pool year-round as well.