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Eden Park Wins Venue Of The Year And Event Of The Year At International TheStadiumBusiness Awards

Eden Park named the winner of two categories at the prestigious TheStadiumBusiness Awards (Photo/Supplied)

Eden Park has been named the winner of two categories at the prestigious TheStadiumBusiness Awards in Manchester, taking home Event of the Year and Venue of the Year.

Regarded as the leading awards for the industry, TheStadiumBusiness Awards 2024 recognises leadership, innovation and achievement across global stadia. Eden Park jointly received the Event of the Year award for the FIFA Women’s World Cup 2023 alongside Sydney’s Accor Stadium and claimed the highly sought-after Venue of the Year title.

The stadium was up against a record number of entries, triumphing over formidable competition in both categories. Other finalists in the Venue of the Year category included major international stadiums such as Wembley Stadium, Croke Park, Suncorp Stadium, AO Arena, CPKC Stadium and Citizens Bank Park.

Accepting the awards on behalf of the stadium, Eden Park CEO Nick Sautner said, “These awards are a true testament to the collective efforts and commitment of our team who go above and beyond to support the delivery of a diverse range of events and functions at our national stadium.

“I would like to acknowledge our Chairman Alan Gourdie, Trustees, staff, volunteers, partners, and contractors who can all take immense pride that Eden Park has received international recognition for the work we do. Thank you also to our hirers and promoters for collaborating with us to deliver exceptional events for the people of Auckland and New Zealand.

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“And finally, thank you to our families and whānau who enable us to do what we love. I know that this industry demands long days and late nights, which requires sacrifice from the families. We’re so incredibly grateful for your love and support”.

During his acceptance speech for Venue of the Year, Sautner took a moment to reflect on Eden Park’s journey over the years. He referred to the stadium’s transformational change and its evolution to become a truly hybrid multi-purpose stadium delivering a diverse range of sporting, entertainment, cultural and community events.

He also looked ahead, promising to continue pushing boundaries and explore new opportunities to ensure Eden Park maintained its globally iconic status as New Zealand’s national stadium.

“Eden Park has always been, and will continue to be, a community asset for Tamaki Makaurau and a strategic asset for Aotearoa, New Zealand.

“70% of the attendance in 2023 came from events which weren’t part of our business model 5 years ago. This reflects our strategic commitment to innovation and constantly adapting our offering to meet the changing needs and interests of our community.”

TheStadiumBusiness Event of the Year award was claimed by the FIFA Women’s World Cup 2023, with others in the category including 2023 United Rugby Championship Grand Final, FIBA Basketball World Cup 2023, and the 2023 UCI Cycling World Championships.

The FIFA Women’s World Cup 2023, held in July and August of 2023, was staged across ten different New Zealand and Australia venues. Eden Park held nine fixtures in 27 days, attracting 350,000 patrons. The tournament injected $87m into the region’s GDP.

“FIFA Women’s World Cup showcased the power of sport in breaking barriers and promoting gender equality. It created a paradigm shift in women’s sport and has left an unforgettable legacy at home in New Zealand,” said Sautner.

“The tournament delivered significant social and economic benefits to our community, city, and country – the boost to our tourism, local businesses job creation, improvements to our facilities, and the media exposure has all highlighted the valuable role major events have in our society.

“We can all take immense pride in these awards. For Eden Park to be announced as the recipient of both Event of the Year and Venue of the Year reinforces our globally iconic status as New Zealand’s national stadium.”

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