Indoor facility with dedicated pickleball courts planned in Malta

Legacy Pickleball Club, a new indoor facility with dedicated pickleball courts, is slated to be built in Malta.

The Saratogian reported the news on Nov. 19 and Pickleball518 talked to the pickleball player behind the plan, Michael Xirinachs. It is the second major announcement this week about indoor pickleball courts planned for the region. The Albany Business Review reported about a plan to convert a Kmart in Latham into an pickleball club.

Xirinachs’ Malta proposal calls for eight indoor courts and likely five outdoor courts, all with a pro-cushion surface that plays like a standard asphalt court but is easier on the knees. The club will have a bar and lounge, outdoor BBQ pits and shade barriers on the outdoor courts.

Really, all we needed to know was: “dedicated” pickleball courts. Insert happy noises here.

Xirinachs, pronounced ZEER-i-nox, hopes to open in by July 2023.  The location is across from the Malta Drive-in and down the road from the Albany Saratoga Speedway on Route 9.

Xirinachs said he’d like to build five pickleball facilities throughout the Northeast, and is working toward hosting a Major League Pickleball event in Malta.

Xirinachs worked on Wall Street for 30 years and lived on Long Island. He and his partner rented a home in the Saratoga area, where his partner has family. They hunkered down here when the pandemic hit.

He had played pickleball a few times while visiting family in Florida and stopped by East Side Recreation in Saratoga Springs about a year and a half ago to watch. Players pulled him to a game, and like many, he was hooked.

Legacy Sports Club will have a charitable arm to support first responders, other charities and schools trying to build pickleball programs.

Xirinachs’ plan to build an indoor facility came to life after he tried to transition from outdoor play to indoor play during the cold season.

“It’s a different game,” he said.

He said his facility will try to replicate the outdoor experience, like the one at East Side, where he continues to play.