Aldridge: WTA Pre-Wimbledon Party Recap
Published June 21, 2014 12:11
LONDON, England - June is my favorite month of the year. Not only is the weather usually beautiful, it's also Wimbledon time! As a huge tennis fan, I've always dreamed of one day traveling to London to take part in all the festivities surrounding such a prestigious Grand Slam. That dream finally came true on Thursday night when I had the opportunity to cover the WTA Pre-Wimbledon Party for our show, WTA Live from the Red Carpet Presented by Xerox. And what a night it was. The glitz, the glam, the gowns - oh my! It was so cool to see all the top players wearing their most gorgeous designer dresses and posing in front of the paparazzi like total movie stars.
From sun up to sun down, it was truly a magical experience. My day started at the Oriflame Style Suite where I was lucky enough to get my hair and makeup done alongside Sorana Cirstea, Jelena Jankovic, Dominika Cibulkova, Donna Vekic, and Daniela Hantuchova. It was so much fun to be able to relax, get pampered, and hang out with the girls so candidly, all while getting our glam on (I'm still pinching myself!).
After the Oriflame Style Suite, our crew headed to get set up for our live show at the Kensington Rooftop Gardens. There were other media outlets from all over the world setting up at the same time, too; Sports Illustrated, Women's Wear Daily, The BBC, Grazia Magazine, and The Daily Mail, to name a few, so I was constantly reminded of the huge magnitude of the event (in other words, don't screw this up, Kristen!). I practiced my lines a few hundred times while my (awesome!) producers got the cameras in place, and before we knew it, we were live.
Li Na was first up on our show and all I can say is WOW! I was obsessed with her purple jumpsuit the moment I saw it. We joked about the fact that she had asked her fans on Facebook to help choose her outfit, and even though they had picked a dress for her to wear, she decided last minute to go with the jumpsuit instead. She of course looks stunning in anything, but I definitely thought she made the right choice. I wonder if she'll let me borrow it… (a girl can dream, right?)
The hour that followed was a complete whirlwind. From Maria Sharapova, Laura Robson, and Sabine Lisicki, to Eugenie Bouchard, Dominika Cibulkova, Victoria Azarenka, and Venus and Serena Williams, there was no shortage of stars. I loved every single interview, but two particular conversations completely captured my heart.
First, Aga and Ula Radwanska. It was Ula's first time at the WTA Party so Aga was telling me about the fun they were going to have in the photo booth inside. Next thing I knew, they were reenacting all their best poses and it was seriously the cutest thing ever! They are both so adorable and needless to say, the moment was hysterical. You could hear the entire red carpet break out into laughter and it's easy to see why they're so loved by fans.
Next, Sloane Stephens. In all my years covering prestigious events like the Oscars, Grammys, and Golden Globes, I've never had a situation quite like this. I was interviewing Vika when I spotted Sloane arriving and my first thought was, "ooh, I LOVE her dress!" That's when I realized…we were wearing the EXACT same dress! We both started cracking up when I gave her a big hug as she walked by. She looked completely smashing in it and I even admitted to her that she had much better taste in shoes (she went with nude heels instead of my strappy silver which made her already long legs look even longer). Note taken next time I wear it :)
And suddenly, we were wrapped! After the show I hit the party upstairs where I scarfed down some amazing food, ogled Ana Ivanovic's breathtaking dress (for the twentieth time), rocked out to Bob Sinclar, and helped cheer on England in the World Cup (so bummed they lost). At the end of the night, my incredible producer (seriously, she's really incredible) Andi Chu and I toasted to one awesome evening. I'll never forget it! Thanks to all of you for watching and being a part of all the action along with us, and thanks again to Xerox for making it happen!
Watch the full episode of WTA Live from the Red Carpet presented by Xerox with host Kristen Aldridge:
"WTA Live All Access Hour presented by Xerox" host Kristen Aldridge is a seasoned sports/entertainment journalist, television personality, and lover of all things tennis who has been featured in a multitude of programs, including correspondent for "The Insider", host of Yahoo's most-watched web series, "omg! NOW", and fitness contributor to Shape Magazine, to name a few. She's lent her expertise to "E! News", "Showbiz Tonight", and "The Talk" and has covered major sporting events to red carpets like the Oscars and the Grammys. Connect with Kristen via Twitter and Facebook, or visit her official website.