Lakes Tennis Academy was on the brink of closing and being demolished when Nick Johnson took the risky move of accepting the manager position.
Johnson had a comfortable job at a North Dallas country club when the previous owner of Lakes Tennis Academy offered him the position in 2004.
“He was very clear when he hired me that he’d been losing money for a lot of years and that there was a limited amount of time that I had before he would bulldoze it,” Johnson said. “… But he said, ‘If you can help me turn it around, I’m going to leave you to manage it, then you can do well here.’”
The academy broke even in 2006, and Johnson bought the facility at the end of that year.
Today, the tennis academy offers programs and instruction for children and adults. It features 12 tennis courts, a fitness center, a junior Olympic-size swimming pool and a lounge.
There are five membership packages. Tennis members can participate in leagues and tournaments.
Johnson said the academy is open to anyone looking to improve his or her skills.
“We’re all about moving you through the process,” he said. “We’re not necessarily entertainment; we don’t do a lot of margarita mixers. We have some of that. But it’s really if you’re coming here to take a lesson with our pros, it’s probably because you want to move to the next skill set.”
Lakes Tennis Academy offers instruction for all skill levels, including the most advanced athletes.
“We had a girl who played the U.S. Open. We’ll probably have kids get into Wimbledon and the French Open; I mean top in the world,” Johnson said.
What sets the academy’s instructors apart is their belief that anyone can improve, Johnson said.
“We believe wherever you are, you can get better; you can move,” he said. “You also hope someone gets the self-esteem and satisfaction of knowing you can get better; you can improve; you can be the best.”
Lakes Tennis Academy
4000 Legacy Drive, Frisco
Mon.-Thurs. 8 a.m.-9 p.m., Fri.-Sat. 8 a.m.-7 p.m., Sun. noon-7 p.m.