With sports tourism on the rise, here’s how to make your complex more attractive to traveling sports teams.
Sports tourism is an ever-expanding industry, growing to include more than just major professional and college athletics. High school and youth programs are traveling further distances for competitive events, visiting different communities and bringing their sports tourism dollars with them. By investing in the development of state-of-the-art sports facilities, restaurants, hotels, etc, cities become much more attractive to traveling sports teams, their families and supporters. Development projects will vary in scope depending to a degree on a city’s size, but no community is too small or rural to start making sports tourism improvements.
Retrofit an Existing Facility for Sports Tourism
Are you currently involved in the management of an existing sports complex or recreation center? If you are not aware of your facility’s sports tourism potential, you’re missing out on an untapped stream of profits. Let’s say you operate a facility for tennis, softball or soccer. How many fields do you presently offer? By maximizing the number of fields or courts you have, you’ll become a more appealing option for hosting large tournaments.
Renovating dugouts, locker rooms and other areas frequented by athletes will get your complex noticed on the sports tourism scene. Colleges and universities are constantly pouring massive amounts of money into these facilities in hopes of landing the most coveted recruits. It may be on a smaller financial scale, but you’re going for the same idea – enticing teams to participate in your tournaments and athletic events year after year.
Another addition that is relatively simple to implement would be a concession service. You might not have the space or the capital to build an on-site restaurant, but an indoor seating area where sandwiches and other simple meals are served can make a big difference. Strategically placed concession stands can even add value to your facility and portable storage buildings offer a durable, low-cost solution. Of course, being involved in sports facility management, you know the importance of keeping these dining and concession areas well stocked and adequately staffed.
Finally, traveling athletes and coaches are constantly in search of convenient, cost-effective lodging. Including modest, dormitory-style housing in your sports complex design makes for an incredible selling point, particularly if your facility strives to host extended competitions and instructional camps. You can tell your clients there’s a hotel nearby, or you can provide them with affordable, on-site lodging. You know which option packs the heavier sports tourism punch.
Of course, these improvements require an incredible amount of attention to facility planning and development funding. The process requires the tireless efforts of many people. Just remember, an investment in your facility’s sports tourism potential will pay future dividends, both in terms of profitability and reputation. You’re also investing in your community, contributing to the local economy and civic pride by establishing a sports tourism destination.
Contact Sports Facilities Advisory today for more information about our sports complex design, funding, planning and opening services.