The Santiago Bernabéu will take on a new look over the next few years in order to become one of the world’s most impressive sports arenas, as well as an architectural marvel. The joint project between GMP Architects and L35 Ribas won the contest to decide on the design for a stadium that will be a global icon.
According to Club President, Florentino Pérez:
The new Santiago Bernabéu will a be an incredible place full of emotions and pride for our fans. We want it to be the best stadium in the world, as comfortable a place to watch football as possible and with pioneering architectural design. The best stadium, in one location, that will be a worldwide symbol. A special, unique and spectacular stadium.
The Club have reportedly secured funding for the new stadium through a long-term strategic partnership with Abu Dhabi’s International Petroleum Investment Company (IPIC). As part of the deal, the state-owned fund will inject an unspecified sum into what is already the world’s richest football club, with the money to be channelled into the €400m (US$500m/GBP£314m) stadium renovation. Speculation is also rife in the Spanish press that IPIC is the frontrunner to take up the the naming rights to the new Santiago Bernabéu.
Speaking at the recent press conference, Pérez confirmed:
IPIC will become a key partner that shares our values and will help us promote and strengthen the Real Madrid brand throughout every continent. From now on, as one of our most important sponsors, they will be instrumental in carrying out a series of crucial projects for Real Madrid’s future.
While the length of the agreement with IPIC has not yet been publicised, the two parties will work together to establish Real Madrid-themed museums and soccer schools around the world, and also create content for digital distribution.
In terms of the winning stadium design, Pérez said:
Four of the most highly respected teams on a global level pitched their ideas to us. But we could only opt for one of them and we chose GMP Architects and L35 Ribas. This pioneering project perfectly reflects what we were looking for. It is extremely beautiful and can adapt to the rigours of the sporting calendar.
Volkwin Marg, the founder and owner of GMP Architects – one half of the winning design team – added:
We have had the honour of building more than 20 stadiums, but this is the most important project we have ever taken on. We present to you the most important stadium of the new generation.
The design reflects the values the legendary club that is Real Madrid holds dear. Additionally, the retractable roof will allow for different events to be held here. Sporting events, cultural events and other kinds of entertainment that will attract people to the stadium who have previously never visited it.
The design for the new Santiago Bernabéu features a facade of LED’s around the stadium, museum and nearby theme park development, which will effectively operate as a huge TV screen to show the Club’s greatest moments.
The project is expected to take six years to complete and will include a vast retail area, restaurants, a hotel and a museum dedicated to the Club.