As the Super Bowl approaches Las Vegas, the city is asserting itself as the sports capital of the country. It has long been known as “Sin City”, but now, thanks to its thriving sports calendar, it’s garnering a reputation as the “sports and entertainment capital of the world.” According to local economists, Las Vegas’ “fun economy” makes up 13.7% of the world’s GDP, and the global sports economy is projected to reach $2.65tn by 2023.
Recognition of Las Vegas as a sports hub has been growing over the years as it attracted big-name sporting events and teams. The Super Bowl at Allegiant Stadium has further solidified its status. The stadium, which cost $2bn and was partially funded by public financing, is expected to bring 330,000 visitors to the city, filling up 156,000 hotel rooms over the weekend.
Las Vegas’ investment in sports has paid off following the Covid-19 pandemic, with the city attracting 40.8 million visitors in 2023, rebounding from a significant drop in tourism in 2020. The influx of sports events and teams, such as the Raiders, Golden Knights, and international soccer matches, have contributed to this recovery.
The Super Bowl is expected to have an economic impact of about $600 million on the city. And not only does it bring added visitors, but sporting events, in general, attract people who are looking for unique experiences beyond traditional tourism options. The variety of sports events, including college football and basketball, NASCAR, boxing, and UFC, which generate significant out-of-town spending, demonstrates the city’s appeal as a sports destination.
In addition to sports, musical events have also contributed to the city’s recovery from the pandemic. Las Vegas has shown that it is a resilient and attractive destination for visitors seeking entertainment, sports, and other unique experiences. The calendar is less volatile now, thanks to events such as sports and musical performances, facilitating the city’s rebound from the pandemic and further cementing its identity as a world-class destination.