Aztec Stadium is not scheduled to open until 2022. Part of the money to pay for the $310 million facility will come from ticket sales. So how do you sell tickets to a place that doesn’t exist yet?
You make a big ol’ virtual experience.
“The whole goal is to get Aztec fans, donors, alumni, potentially corporate partners to come down here and het to experience everything the stadium and the project will have to offer with the goal of actually helping them select their seats at the end of the tour,” says Jennifer Bower, Vice President of Stadium Partnerships for Aztec Stadium.
The Aztec Stadium Experience is in Suite 112 of a Mission Valley office building not far from the stadium site.
“We viewed 20 or 30 different locations,” says Bower. “We wanted it close proximity to the project, ample parking, a nice building to be able to bring guests to really to paint the vision of what the stadium will be like.”
To that end they have several activations designed to stir the emotions of potential ticket holders. The tour starts with a walk through SDSU athletics history. There’s a wall honoring great Aztecs of the past flanked by Mountain West Conference championship trophies. Guests see the way donors and members of the Aztec Club enrich the lives of student-athletes.
After a trip down memory lane, you’re hit with a vision for the future.
A full-size model of the stadium awaits. It showcases the spacious floorplan and clean sightlines, large video boards, and some of the amenities that modern venues have to have in order to keep patrons entertained even if they’re not sports fans.
“60% stadium and 40% unique to San Diego, so you have a lot of wide-open concourses, a lot of connectivity to the field,” says Bower. “And then there are a lot of unique club spaces and hospitality options for guests that maybe aren’t really into football but want to be part of a cool atmosphere.”
The entertainment spaces are earmarked inside the facility and in the Stadium Experience you can see what different club areas will look like, but specifics are still being worked out.
“In terms of that game day atmosphere and what food, what specific brands are going to be there, we’re still working through that right now,” says Bower, who does say there will be craft been because San Diego.
As bad as football stadiums have been in America’s Finest City, the baseball stadium has set the bar for what sporting events should be. Aztec Stadium wants to create the same kind of vibe but in its own, collegiate way.
“I know there’s a lot of comparison to Petco Park and we definitely respect everything that they’ve done and the goal is to have a similar venue but have our own unique kind of Aztec flavor on it, as well,” says Bower.
If all this sells the potential ticket buyer that person can pick out a specific seat. The Stadium Experience has a room where you can see that the 360-degree view is from every one of the 35,000 seats.
As we wait for the Sports Arena and Midway District redevelopment plans to play out this facility has eyes on hosting a whole lot more than just college football games.
“We have anticipated 30-35 major ticketed events per year,” says Bower. “Of those are six to seven Aztec (football) home games. So, a big portion is for the Aztecs but there also will be that event for every San Diegan.”
That includes talking with motorsports events like Monster Jam, potential UFC fights, high-profile concerts and soccer matches.
“The goal is to have this venue open 365 days a year, seven days a week," says Bower.
The Stadium Experience is only open to Aztec Club members. To sign up visit www.aztecstadium.com.