Today we’d like to introduce you to Belen Salcedo and Mike May.
Belen is originally from Spain. She is currently the number one player in the US since 2016. She moved here from Spain in 2013 to pursue her dream to promote her favorite sport. She recently married in 2014 with Mike the President of The United States Padel Association (USPA) in which she is a volunteer doing marketing and social media for the USPA. The two of them have been promoting Padel together in the US and decided to further grow the sport by opening a Padel facility available to the general public in the Near Northside close to downtown.
Originally Mike and Belen bought a 16,000 square foot lot thinking that they were going to make the land their own personal residence and build a Padel court for friends to come over and play. After about a year of ownership the two came up with the idea to convert the land into a 2 court Padel facility with a club house instead.
Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
There were plenty of struggles in just figuring out how to get started with the permitting process. The whole process of getting the proper permits took easily a year. This was our first project of its type so the process to get permits was new to us. We eventually hired and architect which helped us step by step through the process.
iPadel Houston – what should we know? What do you guys do best? What sets you apart from the competition?
We put our heart and souls into this business. The facility is very welcoming and full of color. The furniture is all made from recycled pallets with plenty of shaded areas for guests to rest between or view matches. We even put a large 8 foot by 80 foot metal wall made from recycled roofing material in the shaded area for guests to be able to sign their name and leave a message. The perimeter fence of the property was painted by Art teacher Michael Healy and his students at “Yes Prep Schools”. The property is located on Egypt street so the name of the mural is “Having a Ball on Egypt”.
The actual Padel courts are a mix of red, white and blue metal fencing which really stands out. Our guests are welcome to come with their dog since the facility is a dog friendly facility which is also great because the whole family can hang out together without having to rush home to let them do out. Guests can also play corn hole and some other skilled throwing games as well as mini- basketball and ping pong.
We also made the sport very affordable offering hourly rentals as well as annual memberships for the frequent player. Many of our guest have rented the whole facility for both adult and kid’s birthday parties.
What has been the proudest moment of your career so far?
Our proudest moment was cutting the ribbon on the grand opening day May 5, 2017. The total process took over two years in which we did every bit of the construction with our own hands.
- Padel court rental is $40 per hour
- Padel Racquets can be rented for $5 in which half of that fee is applied to a racquet purchase
- Private lessons start at $60 and are futher discounted with package offerings.
- Birthday parties can rent the whole facility for $130 per hour
- Address: iPadel Houston
1112 Egypt Street
Houston, Texas 77009
- Website: www.ipadelhouston.com
- Instagram: iPadelhouston