By Susie Reese
Super Bowl Sunday is almost here, and while a majority of fans will be watching from the comfort of their couches, the Super Bowl usually touches down in alluring, tropical locales. This year, the game snaps in Glendale, Arizona, where players will enjoy a dry, mild climate for game time, but this is only the second time Glendale has received the Big Game (third for Arizona). Here is a rundown of the most popular places for the Super Bowl to invade.
Third Runner Up: San Diego
Los Angeles’s southern sister caught the Super Bowl three times in its 49-year history, but that’s no sneak attack. With San Diego’s mild temperatures and cool breeze from the Pacific Ocean, players and fans alike enjoy wandering the city with its famous Gaslamp Quarter, chocked-full of trendy restaurants and entertainment venues. Of course, if you’re looking to intercept a little sand and sun with your Super Bowl, then head to the historically chic Coronado Island with the famous Hotel Del Coronado. Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort is modeled after this luxury property, but it doesn’t put up the history the “Hotel Del” does as the birthplace of Oz, the scene of many ghostly occurrences, and a staple in America film.
Big Hits: The San Diego Zoo, SeaWorld® San Diego, LEGOLAND California; Comic-Con® International
Must Stay: Hyatt Regency Mission Bay sits on the goal line. It has incredible ocean views, and from the comfort of your room, you can hear the calls of the sea lions. It also has a separate suite section for extra space for that Super Bowl afterparty. It also boasts fire pits, a poolside lounge, an eco-friendly spa, and scrumptious quesadillas, and during peak season, a private boat to SeaWorld®.
Second Runner Up: Tampa
Glorious host to four Super Bowls, Tampa hasn’t hosted since 2009 and won’t be hosting any time soon since it lost a bid to bring the Big Game back to Florida in 2018. But Tampa is a contender for not just the Super Bowl but also for your next vacation. The Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino – Tampa lures the gambler at heart and the nighttime adventurer with slots, poker, Black Jack, bars, and the legendary Hard Rock Café. For the nature lovers of the lot, you’ll want to venture into more than 4,000 acres of Hillsborough River State Park or if you’re really brave, take a canoe out to find the gators. And of course, you’re only an hour away from Orlando’s world-class attractions.
Local Hits: Safari Wilderness Ranch, Busch Gardens® Tampa, Museum of Science and Industry; Cigar City Brewing Co.
Must Stay: Call an audible and stay in Orlando, less than an hour’s drive from Tampa. The Melia Suite Orlando Resort is just off of I-4, the major corridor that runs from Daytona to Tampa, and it’s an all-suite property that gives you room to relax after the chaos of the game (or theme parks). If you’re looking for the biggest rooms in the entire Orlando area, then catch a deal at the Renaissance Orlando at SeaWorld®, on the doorstop of the adventure marine park.
Related Story: A Suite Getaway in Orlando
First Runner Up: Pasadena
California makes it on our list twice with Pasadena, home of the Rose Bowl, taking five Super Bowls. But since Pasadena is only 10 miles away from downtown L.A., that means you can party like the quarterback! Go for the two-point conversion with Starline Tours of Hollywood (see a celebrity) and Universal Studios Hollywood (be a celebrity). In L.A. you can score world-class shopping at The Grove with its high-end stores and celebrate your victory at L.A. LIVE, a vibrant nightlife venue with bars and nightclubs.
Must Stay: The Sheraton Universal is in the slot, next to Universal Studios® in the Hollywood Hills. It plays host to many of Hollywood’s conferences, like the Pre-Emmy selection meetings on its top-floor ballroom, and more than one celebrity stays at the hotel at any given time, filming at the nearby studios. Perhaps that’s why it’s known in the entertainment community as the “Hotel of the Stars.”
Winners: New Orleans and Miami
New Orleans and Miami have a high red zone percentage when it comes to scoring Super Bowls. They both have hosted ten, and why not? Both are renowned for their amazing nightlife with Miami’s South Beach and New Orleans’s French Quarter, which make for ideal after-game celebration venue. And even if you can’t get a ticket, the best time to visit these great party cities is actually AFTER the Super Bowl since the NFL requires hotels that host their players, media, and officials to have certain standards, which mean a majority of hotels renovate just before the Super Bowl. So after the Big Game, these hotels are ready to host your next luxury getaway.
New Orleans’s Big Hits: French Quarter, Harrah’s New Orleans Casino, Aquarium of the Americas, National World War II Museum, Audubon National Institute (Zoo, Butterfly Garden, and Insectarium), Mardi Gras World
New Orleans’s Must Stay: Less than a yard from the French Quarter, you won’t even need a first down to get into the thick of things from Sheraton New Orleans, and fresh off a $55 million renovation, this hotel is ready to party, complete with its rooftop pool and sundeck. Valet parking and its walking distance to Bourbon Street, the aquarium, and world-famous restaurants make this hotel a must-stay property during Mardi Gras.
Miami’s Must Stays: The SLS Hotel South Beach is probably best known for its appearance on Keeping Up with the Kardashians, but this luxury property is total offense, thanks to Sam Nazarian, Philippe Starck, Chef José Andrés, and Lenny Kravitz. If you’re looking for ultra chic, then the Delano Hotel is an automatic first down with its ultimate poolside luxury at the Delano Beach Club, sophisticated drinks at the Rose Bar, nighttime excitement at FDR, and unparalleled relaxation at the rooftop Club Essentia.
Related Story: Let the Good Times Roll at Mardi Gras!
Of course, these are just the winning host cities. When it comes to states, Florida trumps with 15 Super Bowls with Miami, Tampa, and Jacksonville having all hosted. California is a close second with Pasadena, San Diego, L.A., and Palo Alto. The Bay Area will receive next year’s coveted Golden Super Bowl, but this year, the teams reconvene in Glendale for Arizona’s third Big Game.
About Susie Reese
Susie Reese is a copywriter for FC USA Artworks. She loves to travel (you know it!) and has ventured extensively across North America. She enjoys short walks on the beach and comic cons. She writes On the Go: A Magazine for Travelers and on her free-time, comics and short stories.
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