On the tennis calendar, June marks the arrival of grass court season in the United Kingdom, a surface steeped with centuries-old pomp and tradition. Among the several tournaments across the country in the run-up to Wimbledon – from Eastbourne to Nottingham – is the Giorgio Armani Tennis Classic, an exhibition event held on the verdant lawns of Fulham’s historic The Hurlingham Club. 

Described by organisers as a celebration of ‘timeless elegance and quintessential British traditions’ – as well as a well-timed warm-up for Wimbledon, which takes place the week afterwards – the event attracts the tour’s finest talent, from bright young things to legends of the game (this season’s players included teenage Spanish hotshot Carlos Alcaraz, rising Canadian Félix Auger-Aliassime, and double-digit grand-slam winners Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic).

Giorgio Armani Tennis Classic at The Hurlingham Club

Giorgio Armani tennis collection

Befitting the sense of occasion, Giorgio Armani designed a number of outfits for tournament staff – from ball boys and girls to ushers and officials. The limited-edition collection, which will be available in Armani’s Sloane Street store, Harrods and at The Hurlingham Club itself, numbers 16 different pieces in navy or white, each mining the traditional codes of tennis dress for inspiration. 

There is Georgio Armani’s riff on tennis whites (wide-leg Bermuda shorts and a matching polo, each imprinted with the Giorgio Armani Tennis Classic logo), a navy double-breasted blazer (reminiscent of the traditional linesperson’s uniform) and matching caps, socks and ties (also stamped with the event’s logo). A sense of ease is central to the various pieces’ design, making them primed for by on- and off-court activities.

Mr Armani himself is an avid fan of tennis, with longtime links to the game –  his EA7 Emporio Armani sportswear label outfits a number of top-50 players on the tour, Nadal has starred in previous Emporio Armani underwear campaigns, while numerous stars of the game, Djokovic and Serena Williams among them, have attended the house’s runway shows in Milan. But 2022 marks the first year that Giorgio Armani is principal sponsor of the Hurlingham Club tournament, a partnership that looks set to continue in coming seasons. §