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Not just a competition anymore

Published on September 4th, 2023

The 2007 America’s Cup is often referred to as a high-point of the competition. It was the first edition in Europe, attracting a record 11 challengers from nine nations to confront the Swiss defender in the IACC yacht, now in its fifth event.

After the previous three America’s Cups were sweeps, the defender was down 2-1 before they rolled through four wins, claiming the 32nd edition by a mere one second in the final race. It was an amazing finish in Valencia, Spain.

But more than just a competition, the America’s Cup in 2007 increased its profile as a commercial property which each defender has sought to leverage. While Valencia failed to financially benefit from the event, Barcelona hopes to remain in the black for 2024 by delivering an ‘experience’… here’s the pitch:

From almost any vantage point in the Port Vell in Barcelona, the distinctive graphics of the 37th America’s Cup Official Exhibition Centre can be seen. The building, formerly an IMAX cinema complex has been transformed over the past six months into the ‘America’s Cup Experience,’ offering visitors a remarkable, immersive journey through the storied history of the event and up to the modern day.

Very much in keeping with the 37th America’s Cup determination to push the boundaries of the event and raise the bar for all as a truly global sporting spectacle, the AC Experience is a unique and ambitious exhibition center that informs and educates as well as offering world class facilities, restaurants, and shops.

It’s a sensory experience from the moment you walk into the main atrium that features a replica of the America’s Cup trophy set beneath two giant replica foils of Emirates Team New Zealand, the Defender of the trophy, and INEOS Britannia, the Challenger of Record. A giant video wall welcomes you to the exhibition center and starts to build the excitement as we count down to the start of the Challenger Selection Series just over a year from now.

Walking through the free area, visitors can learn about the racing and get familiar with the racing teams and the uniforms they wear to compete at the highest level of international sailing. From there, a walk through the learning desks provides information on the AC75, the exciting AC40, the innovation required to build and sail these boats, the America’s Cup’s commitment to sustainability and a fabulous information graphic and video of Barcelona and the Sea.

At the exit of the free area, the shop is stocked with Official 37th America’s Cup regalia and memorabilia and patrons may then step out to the forecourt area where the Sailor’s Cove restaurant is located, serving delicious beverages, food, and alcoholic drinks.

However, a trip to the America’s Cup Experience is made by entering the ticketed zone where you will be immersed in a 3D undersea world before walking through the entertainment corridors through to the 90 screen America’s Cup timeline exhibition.

Here you will see the characters, the boats, and the stories that make this famous competition so unique. With a history that dates back to 1851, it’s a remarkable and colorful, immersive timeline that brings you the sights, the sounds and the spectacle of the America’s Cup.

The final part of your journey is to enter the IMAX auditorium where award-winning film-makers have created the ultimate America’s Cup film, documenting the present-day battle to win the most famous trophy in sailing.

Titled ‘One Hell of a Battle,’ we take you on a journey that delves into the psyche required to win, the difficulty of the task and the prospect of the most incredible sailing regatta ever witnessed, being staged in Barcelona, just off the beachfront in just 12 months’ time.

It’s an unforgettable experience with additional features to be added including two simulators that will take you onboard an AC75 with all the sights, sound and speed of these awesome craft. Further planned features include interactive video screens detailing and chronicling the history of the Cup.

Also soon will be the opening of the VRABA restaurant upstairs by Albert Ventura – an award-winning, master Catalan chef – with a stunning terrace looking out across the Port Vell with arguably the best views in town. Perfect for a lunchtime or evening meal and the cocktail bar inside promises to be something equally special. Don’t miss it.

The America’s Cup Experience is open every day of the year. Come and experience the greatest sailing show on earth – Discover, Immerse, Learn, and Enjoy.

Following the publication of the AC37 Protocol and AC75 Class Rule on November 17, 2021, the AC75 Class Rule and AC Technical Regulations were finalized on March 17, 2022. The entry period opened December 1, 2021 and runs until July 31, 2022, but late entries for the 37th America’s Cup may be accepted until May 31, 2023. The Defender was to announce the Match Venue on September 17, 2021 but postponed the venue reveal, confirming it would be Barcelona on March 30, 2022. The 37th America’s Cup begins October 12, 2024.

Teams revealed to challenge defender Emirates Team New Zealand (NZL):
INEOS Britannia (GBR)
Alinghi Red Bull Racing (SUI)
Luna Rossa Prada Pirelli Team (ITA)
NYYC American Magic (USA)
Orient Express Racing Team (FRA)

2023-24 Preliminary Regattas
September 14-17, 2023 (AC40): Vilanova i la Geltrú, Spain
November 30-December 3 (AC40): Jeddah, Saudi Arabia
August 2024 (AC75): Barcelona, Spain

2024 America’s Cup
September: Challenger Selection Series
October 12 – ?: 37th Match (Best of 13)

Additionally, 12 teams will compete in the 2024 Youth & Women’s America’s Cup.

Additional details:

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