© ATP 250 Ecuador Open

Rogerio Dutra Silva and Ivo Karlovic, who feature in the top quarter of the draw, will both be aiming for a first Ecuador Open title in Quito.

Karlovic, Dutra Silva Hit New Heights In Quito

Players enjoy mini tennis at 3,000 metres above sea level

Quito is called "The City in the Sky" for good reason: The Ecuadorian capital sits in (and often above) the clouds at 9,350 feet (2,800 meters) above sea level. A panorama of the mountainous region that's carved into the rugged Andes is breathtaking. The thin, high-altitude air can be breathtaking as well. 

Cerro Puntas, a protected wetland area in Quito, is home to the Paluguillo Drinking Water Treatment Plant of EPMAPS Agua de Quito, a sponsor of this week's Ecuador Open. Because of environmental pollution and contamination of the region's water supply, Cerro Puntas is vital when it comes to producing water that is pure enough for human consumption.

Croatia's Ivo Karlovic and Brazil's Rogerio Dutra Silva, both entrants in this week's ATP World Tour 250 event in Quito, visited the over 2,000-acre water treatment center and got an inside look at the importance the plant plays within the region. Karlovic was especially impressed by the facility and the role it plays not just in the lives of the Ecuadorian people, but also to the area's wildlife.

"This has been an awesome experience," Karlovic, the tournament's seventh seed said. "We're in a high, remote region, but you stay a while and you realise how clean the water is, how well it's been treated for consumption and how low risk it is both to the people that live here, and to the animals that inhabit the area as well."

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Dutra Silva was equally as impressed: "I had no idea this plant even existed; it feels good to know that people are benefiting from the work that's done here, and I'm grateful to have had the chance to visit the plant. Water, obviously, is essential to life itself. And specifically to us tennis players, quality water plays a role in meeting the demands that come with performing at the highest level on the court."

Marisol Fraga, director of communications for EPMAPS Agua de Quito, was grateful to have the players visit the Cerro Puntas grounds.

"Just by being here, these players helped highlight the work done by the 1,800 employees at this treatment center on a daily basis," Fraga said. "We want to send a message across the planet that it's up to all of us to make this world a better place."

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