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Summerlin hits homerun with new stadium, team

As the 2019 Triple-A baseball season came to a close last month, there was much to celebrate in Summerlin. Las Vegas Ballpark and the city’s Triple-A professional baseball team, renamed this year as the Las Vegas Aviators, both enjoyed record-setting inaugural seasons that uplifted the entire community.

Capturing national attention with a growing suite of awards and setting records within the world of minor league baseball, both the ballpark and the team, a member of the Pacific Coast League and affiliate of the Oakland A’s, helped Downtown Summerlin to solidify its popularity as one of the valley’s premier dining, retail, entertainment and sports destinations.

Opening just five months ago to fanfare, Las Vegas Ballpark is in Downtown Summerlin, the community’s urban core. It was envisioned from inception and developed by Hughes as a major league venue for the city’s beloved minor league team.

Designed by HOK, a national architecture firm with more than 40 major sports stadiums and arenas to its credit, Las Vegas Ballpark boasts a capacity of more than 10,000, featuring a wide range of seating options including 22 suites, club seats, berm seating, party zones and decks. The stadium also offers a kids’ zone, bars and a pool beyond the outfield wall where it’s possible to watch the game while floating.

Similar to the fairy tale first year of the NHL’s Vegas Golden Knights, whose practice facility, City National Arena, is adjacent Las Vegas Ballpark, the Las Vegas Aviators enjoyed storybook success during the team’s inaugural year as the Aviators.

Leading Triple-A baseball in home attendance with 47 sold-out games and average attendance of nearly 9,300 visitors — more than double the attendance of previous seasons — the Las Vegas Ballpark total regular season attendance eclipsed 650,000 in 70 games with 23 crowds of 10,000-plus. The team finished the year as the 2019 PCL Pacific Southern Division Champions.

According to Professional Sports Catering, a subsidiary of Levy and the official hospitality partner at Las Vegas Ballpark, the stadium’s food and beverage sales were higher than those at several Major League Baseball ballparks.

Hughes worked hard to develop an elevated food and beverage program at Las Vegas Ballpark, upgrading the classics and expanding traditional fare to include community favorites from popular area restaurants, including a special collection of hot dogs called FLYDOG by chef Brian Howard of Sparrow + Wolf.

Celebrity chef takeovers at select games drew huge crowds. Among them was Giada De Laurentiis, whose custom frosé was served stadiumwide during every game. And merchandise sales at Las Vegas Ballpark were double initial projections, a testament to the community’s embrace of the team.

“The excitement and enthusiasm for baseball and Las Vegas Ballpark is palpable in Downtown Summerlin,” said Kevin T. Orrock, president of Summerlin. “Not only is the ballpark the area’s newest landmark, it is a place where families and friends come together to enjoy good baseball, good food and good fun. It’s not lost on us that baseball is America’s national pastime, and as the best place in Southern Nevada to live, raise a family, work and play, Summerlin and baseball go hand in hand.”

Las Vegas Ballpark and the Las Vegas Aviators won several awards this year, and among the highest-profile honors are those from Ballpark Digest, the industry standard for the business of baseball. On Aug. 30, Ballpark Digest announced that Las Vegas Ballpark was selected as the ballpark of the year, and the Las Vegas Aviators are the team of the year. This is the first time Ballpark Digest has awarded both a stadium and its affiliated team with top honors during the same year.

Downtown Summerlin’s retail center was uplifted by the success of Las Vegas Ballpark and the Las Vegas Aviators. With more than 125 national and regional retail and restaurant brands arrayed in a vibrant outdoor setting, Downtown Summerlin boasts annual visitation of more than 18 million annually. Once 2019 figures are compiled, that number is expected to approach 20 million thanks to the influx of baseball fans who took advantage of the destination’s shopping, dining and entertainment offerings both before and after the season’s 71 home games.

Planned as a true urban living environment in the heart of suburbia, Downtown Summerlin is expected to offer more than 4,000 residences upon completion via apartments, brownstones, lofts and condos. Today, the area is home to two luxury apartment communities that are meeting growing demand in Southern Nevada for a more experiential lifestyle and a smaller footprint with low maintenance.

In July, Hughes opened Tanager, boasting 267 apartments from 660 square feet to 1,300 square feet. Tanager has a prime location at Downtown Summerlin and is within walking distance to all of the retail, dining and entertainment options in the area. With an exceptional amenities package, such as innovative smart home technology powered by Dwelo, resort-style pool, fitness center, gaming studio and a pet park, Tanager is nearly 40 percent leased, just weeks after opening.

“You could say that Las Vegas Ballpark was a real-life field of dreams,” Orrock said. “We built it, and they came. Literally. The entire community and the Downtown Summerlin area, in particular, were uplifted by the success of the ballpark and the team this past summer. We are already looking forward to next year.”

Summerlin offers 155 floor plans in 35 neighborhoods throughout nine distinct villages. Homes are available in a variety of styles — from single-family homes to town homes, priced from the mid-$200,000s to more than $1 million. Visit Summerlin.com for information.

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