On Sunday August 2, the 51,000-seat Estadio BBVA Bancomer in Monterrey, Mexico, opened for its first match.
The US$200 million stadium for “Club de Fútbol Monterrey” is home to more premium seating than any other soccer stadium in Latin America and is the most expensive stadium ever built in Mexico.
The Kansas City-based firm called the stadium the most hospitality-driven and most advanced stadium in Latin America. David Lizarraga, a senior architect and senior associate for the Kansas City-based firm, was the lead architect. He said Estadio BBVA Bancomer will usher in a new generation of stadiums in Latin America.
“The level of detail in the design – from the stadium’s facade, which speaks to Monterrey’s heritage, to the hospitality experience – is unmatched,” Lizarraga said in a release. “The stadium is a modern marvel; it’s been truly special to see the new home for Rayados come to life in Monterrey.”
The stadium boasts 324 suites with high-end furniture and finishes, 4,500 club seats and adjacent lounges sporting luxury food, beverage and seating options.
The aluminum clad stadium’s design is inspired by the history of brewing and steel manufacturing in Monterrey. Like Populous’ Arena das Dunas stadium project in Natal, Brazil, the stadium has an asymmetrical design that frames the Cerro de la Silla mountain south of Monterrey.
The stadium is just the latest sports creation by Kansas City’s largest architecture firm. In July, Populous and London club Tottenham FC announced that they were working together to build what could be a permanent home for the National Football League in London. Last year, the firm’s 42,000-seat stadium in Natal played host to four matches in the 2014 World Cup — including the United States’ dramatic victory over Ghana.
The firm has also designed a number of stadiums in Major League Soccer — including Sporting Park in Kansas City, Kan. It’s reportedly designing a new stadium in Washington for DC United, as well.
The new stadium brought good fortune to its occupants on Sunday. CF Monterrey beat Portuguese club Benfica by three goals in the stadium’s inaugural match. Benfica’s stadium, Estádio da Luz, also was designed by Populous and is considered one of the most beautiful stadiums in Europe.
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