Amalie Arena Details
Home to Tampa Bay Lightning, the Amalie Arena first opened its doors in in 1996. While the Lightning would play their first game in the arena in October 1996, the Royal Hanneford Circus was actually the first attraction on display at the Amalie. It remains a multi-faceted venue today, continuing to host the Tampa Bay Lightning while also welcoming theatrical productions and special events. You can even book private events at this location, which remains one of the most state-of-the-art venues in the United States today.
Ranked as the fourth best arena in the world by Venues Today magazine in 2015, the Amalie has played host to some amazing moments. Greats such as Billy Joel have performed here many times, and the Amalie stage recently welcomed back Paul McCartney for his fourth performance there. On the sports side, the 1999 NHL All-Star game was played at Amalie and many big Lighting moments unfolded under this roof.
The Amalie wasn't always called the Amalie. Originally known as the "Ice Palace" the venue was renamed in 2002 as part of a partnership with the St. Petersburg Times. It was known as the "St. Pete Times Forum" until the paper changed its name in 2011 to the Tampa Bay Times, making this arena the "Tampa Bay Times Forum." Finally, in 2014 a new partnership with Amalie Oil gave the venue its current moniker.
With the fresh name came a new look. Since buying the Lightning in 2010, owner Jeff Vinik has invested $62 million towards upgrading his team's home base, and he's gone on to develop some of the surrounding areas as well. The upgrades he's made - such as a new video board and an enormous digital pipe organ -- have helped increase game attendance by more than 20%. Now recognized as a truly stunning arena, the Amalie is a fitting setting for an exciting hockey game or a breathtaking show.
What are the best places to sit at Amalie Arena?
In the 100 level, more expensive seats give you a close-up view of the ice. Sections 108 and 109 along with 123 and 124 give you a great view right behind each goal and you can see the full layout of each level here.
At the 200 level, you can still get some fantastic views, especially in the first few rows and will pay a little less than on the 100 level. On the 300 level, you're a bit far from the action, but these cheaper seats are great for big groups or families with kids.
Amalie Arena Tips and Tricks
As you're planning your trip, the Amalie Arena site offers a few great resources on how to find everything and what to do in the surrounding area. Ferg's Live is a popular choice for before or after game drinks.
If you're not planning to eat or are looking for cheap parking options, the Bradenton Herald has some great insider tips. They suggest getting off I-275 onto Ashley St. a short distance away. Free street parking should be easier to find in these side streets, and while you'll have to walk a few extra blocks, you'll save a lot by doing so.
Amalie Arena Club Areas
In addition to executive suites and super suites, the Amalie Arena features two club seating areas that can make your visit spectacular.
The Lexus Lounge offers ticket holders complimentary food and beverage service, including cocktails, beer, and wine. You'll also get access to our concierges to help with anything you might need, and you'll be able to enter the arena through a private entrance up to 90 minutes before puck drop -- earlier than any other option.
At the Chase Club, they also provide complimentary food and drinks along with a private entrance, private restrooms, and access to the private Tampa Bay Club level of the arena. This area even boasts the Diamond Crown Cigar Lounge for those who want to enjoy the game in true VIP style.