The Arena Ruse sports venue
|Location||1 Lipnik Boulevard|
|Owner||51% privately owned|
49% Ruse Municipality
|Opened||23 July 2015|
|Construction cost||BGN 55 million (around EUR 28 million)|
|Main contractors||Project Ruse JSC|
|VC Dunav Ruse|
Arena Ruse (Bulgarian: Арена Русе) is an indoor arena located in Ruse, Bulgaria. It is one of the most modern venues in Southeastern Europe with a seating capacity of 5,100 spectators. Positioned in a convenient location beside the city stadium, the arena is within walking distance of the city center and only 1.5 km away from the Ruse Central railway station. An underground parking facility for 150 vehicles is available.
After the official opening, the insurance company Bulstrad bought the naming rights for the venue for three years. The original name Arena Ruse has since been restored.
Projects for the sports hall were first established in 1972 and construction commenced four years later. Work was suspended on numerous occasions throughout the 80s and the end of the socialist period completely terminated all efforts to finish the indoor arena.
Works were unfrozen in 2007 when Ruse Municipality signed a contract with a private investor for the completion of the sports hall by 2010. The investor planned to build a grand shopping mall, as well as a five-star hotel in the area near the sports complex. Construction proceeded rapidly and virtually all ground works and the concrete base of the building were completed. A second, shorter period of inactivity began in 2010 and lasted three years.
Ruse Municipality agreed to purchase the multiple-floor underground parking of the sports hall in 2013 and financed construction with BGN 11 million provided by the national budget. Finishing works to the arena continued for nearly two years. After numerous postponements, the mayor of the city announced an opening date of July 23, 2015 with a concert by renowned Bulgarian singer Lili Ivanova.
Arena Ruse officially opened on July 23, 2015 in the presence of Bulgarian Prime Minister Boyko Borissov and numerous government ministers. There are plans for the construction of a shopping mall and a five-star hotel near the arena in the future.
Arena Ruse hosted three games from Group F of the EuroBasket Women 2017 qualification. The most well-attended of these was played between the national teams of Bulgaria and Greece on November 25, 2015, with around 2,000 people present. The venue was also a host of the World Volleyball Grand Prix, where the national team of Bulgaria played against Kazakhstan, South Korea and Germany.
Bulgarian singer Lili Ivanova held the first concert at the venue in July 2015. Significant events have included Michael Flatley's Lord of the Dance, and British hard rock bands Nazareth and Uriah Heep. World DanceSport Federation's International Open took place in Ruse, Bulgaria on November 21, 2015. Later in the year Arena Ruse hosted a show by Sukhishvili Georgian National Ballet, and Goran Bregović nearly sold-out a concert with over 5,000 attendees. World-renowned pianist Richard Clayderman performed in front of more than 2,500 people at the venue at an event on July 7, 2016. Russian pop singer of Bulgarian origin Philipp Kirkorov toured Bulgaria in September 2017 and performed in Ruse. The English-American rock band Foreigner presented their best and most famous songs in a concert in front of over 3,500 people in the arena on May 8, 2018.
List of events
- "Булстрад Арена стана събитие номер 1 за Русенци". Bulstrad arena. 2015. Retrieved 16 July 2015.
- "Арена Русе" стана "Булстрад Арена"". Bulstrad arena. 2015. Retrieved 16 July 2015.
- "България с три нови зали". presa.bg. 2015. Archived from the original on 2015-03-09. Retrieved 16 July 2015.
- "Рок динозаврите "Назарет" идват за Green Rock Fest в Русе". ruse.actualno.com. 2015. Retrieved 16 July 2015.
- "World Dance Federation Event in Ruse, Bulgaria". 2015. Retrieved 20 November 2015.
- "Ричард Клайдерман покори Русе". 24 Chasa. 2016. Archived from the original on 16 August 2016. Retrieved 8 July 2016.
- "Разтърсващ лайв и само хитове на Foreigner в Русе". 2018. Retrieved 11 May 2018.