Nothing says a destination has hit the big time like hosting the biggest game in the world, the Super Bowl, and the spotlight will be focused on Atlanta when the 53rd edition of the greatest show on the globe plays at Mercedes-Benz Stadium on Sunday, February 3, 2019.
While the hometown Atlanta Falcons are out of the running, Super Bowl LIII and all of its companion events will result in “The ATL” sparkling for the world to see, both for visitors and in high-definition on all manner of screens throughout the world.
“I know everyone’s going to really be awed by what they see in the stadium,” said Mark Vaughan, executive vice president and chief sales officer for the Atlanta CVB.
“This is a tremendous opportunity for us to really put a stamp on and own what we’re so proud of here, which is Southern hospitality," he added.
The super-sized show of hospitality will begin as visitors arrive at Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport—the world’s busiest—which is in the midst of a $6 billion, 20-year transformation that will update the domestic terminal and concourses, culminating in two independent facilities for domestic and international passengers.
Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport, Atlanta
The Hartsfield-Jackson renovation project will also feature a park-like atrium, add another concourse and include a 440-room InterContinental-branded hotel.
Airport officials are eyeing the construction of a sixth runway further along in the project.
Dubbed ATLNext, the project will radically improve the “front door” where most meetings and events visitors enter Atlanta long after the Super Bowl is logged into the history books.
“Everything was designed to enhance the visitor experience,” Vaughan said of the massive airport project. “There will be a new visitor center right at the top of the [arrivals] escalator.
“We want to be in a good position to where people are feeling good right when they come up the escalator at Hartsfield-Atlanta Airport,” he added.
Atlanta Shows Off Event Venues During Super Bowl LIII
The NFL championship is all things “super,” and the 2019 Super Bowl has galvanized Atlanta to new heights of teamwork to show off the destination and create a spectacular events experience for everyone coming in for the big game.
“We started this journey back in early 2015, and as you can imagine it takes an army to pull this thing off, and we’ve had tremendous community support,” Vaughan said.
“It gives everyone a great opportunity to look at the destination and the product, and how we put our best food forward," he added. "People in this community know. They’ve had this date circled for three years now—what they need to do and the visibility it will be for our city."
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"We had 30,000 applicants and we needed 10,000, so we were really able to pick the cream of the crop," Vaughan continued. “That just shows you how fired up the city is and how excited they are for people to be here.”
Vaughan said some of the key Super Bowl happenings include a variety of free events, such as a free concert series at Centennial Olympic Park, which benefitted from a variety of improvements in preparation for the big game.
The new Home Depot Backyard venue, next to Mercedes-Benz Stadium, will also serve as a focus of Super Bowl fan fun.
The Bud Light Super Bowl Music Fest series of concerts featuring top acts will be held at State Farm Arena, which recently reopened after a massive renovation and is located next to Mercedes-Benz Stadium and Atlanta’s primary convention venue, the Georgia World Congress Center, which itself is home to the Super Bowl Experience—an eight-day football theme park.
“We’re going to have everyone from Aerosmith the Bruno Mars,” Vaughan said, referring to the Bud Light Super Bowl Music Fest series.
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New hotels opening just before the Super Bowl include a dual-branded, 288-room AC Hotel by Marriott and Moxy hotel in the Midtown neighborhood.
“I couldn’t be prouder of our hotel community,” Vaughan said. “There’s not one of our convention hotels that has not undergone a renovation in the last two years.”
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