Olympic Stadium Lluís, Show all 34 places in Barcelona » Barcelona34, Show all 75 places in SPAIN » SPAIN75
- Arístides Maillol s/n, 08028 Barcelona
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Originally built in 1927 for the 1929 International Exposition in the city (and Barcelona's bid for the 1936 Summer Olympics, which were awarded to Berlin), it was renovated in 1989 to be the main stadium for the 1992 Summer Olympics.
The stadium has a capacity of 60,713 (67,007 during the 1992 Olympics), and is located in the Anella Olímpica, in Montjuïc, a large hill to the southwest of the city which overlooks the harbor.
Designed by architect Pere Domènech i Roura for the 1929 Expo, the stadium was officially opened on 20 May 1929. Montjuïc hosted its first ever event, Spain's first official rugby international game against Italy.
It was meant to host the People's Olympiad in 1936, a protest event against the 1936 Summer Olympics in Berlin, but the event had to be cancelled due to the outbreak of the Spanish Civil War.
In the fifties, the stadium was the centerpiece of the 1955 Mediterranean Games, and in 1957 it hosted the only national football cup Final between FC Barcelona and RCD Espanyol, the two local clubs.
In the seventies the stadium was disused, and the stands deteriorated. When the Spanish Grand Prix and other races were held at the Montjuïc racing circuit, the stadium was used as a paddock for the teams. Due to safety concerns, the 1975 F1 race was nearly boycotted by drivers.
Due to the award of the 1992 Summer Olympics to Barcelona, the stadium was renovated with the involvement of Italian architect Vittorio Gregotti. The stadium was gutted, preserving only the original facades, and new grandstands were built. In 1989 the venue was re-inaugurated for the World Cup in Athletics, and three years later it hosted the opening and closing ceremonies and the athletics competitions of the Olympic Games.
The stadium served as the home of football club RCD Espanyol from 1997 until 2009. The Estadi Olímpic made its final La Liga appearance during the 2008-2009 season, as Espanyol moved to the newly constructed RCDE Stadium.
It also served as the home of the Barcelona Dragons American football team until 2002. Because the size of the playing surface was slightly shorter than the regulation American Football length, the stadium only had 7-yard end zones, three yards shorter than regulation NFL size in 1991 and 1992. They were later lengthened to the standard 10 yards. The stadium also played host to the National Football League's American Bowl in 1993 and in 1994. The San Francisco 49ers played the Pittsburgh Steelers on 1 August 1993. The second game was played on 31 July 1994 between the Los Angeles Raiders and the Denver Broncos.
In 2001, the stadium was renamed after the former president of the Generalitat de Catalunya Lluís Companys, who was executed at the nearby Montjuïc Castle in 1940 by the Franco regime. In 2010, the stadium hosted the 20th European Athletics Championships.
The stadium has hosted concerts by many famous artists, including Coldplay, Muse, AC/DC,Iron Maiden, Bon Jovi, David Bowie, Deftones, Fiction Plane, Guns N' Roses, Michael Jackson, Jean Michel Jarre, Limp Bizkit, Linkin Park, Madonna, Shakira, Metallica, Mudvayne, Pink Floyd, The Police, Prince & The New Power Generation, RBD, The Rolling Stones, Bruce Springsteen, Mavis Staples, Sting, Tina Turner, U2, Beyoncé and Van Halen, among others.