Olympic Stadium (Athens)

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Athens Olympic Stadium
Olympic Stadium
Olympic stadium,Athens 18.JPG
Full nameOlympic Athletic Center of Athens O.A.K.A (Spyros Louis)
Former namesSpyros Louis Stadium
LocationMaroussi, Athens, Greece
Coordinates38°02′10″N 23°47′15″E / 38.03611°N 23.78750°E / 38.03611; 23.78750Coordinates: 38°02′10″N 23°47′15″E / 38.03611°N 23.78750°E / 38.03611; 23.78750
Public transitLogo of the Athens Metro Operating Company (AMEL).svg Athens Metro Line 1.svg Eirini station
Logo of the Athens Metro Operating Company (AMEL).svg Athens Metro Line 4.svg Olympic Stadium Metro Station (2030)
OwnerHellenic Olympic Committee
OperatorOAKA S.A.
Executive suites17
  • 69,618 (regulated capacity)[1]
  • 75,000 (total capacity)
72,000 (2004 Summer Olympics)[2]
Record attendance82,662 (U2 360° Tour)
75,263 (Olympiacos FCHamburger SV, 3 November 1983)
Field size105 x 68 m[1]
SurfaceGrass, track
Broke ground1979[1]
Opened8 September 1982[1]
Construction cost€265 million (2004)
ArchitectWeidleplan (arch. H. Stalhout, Fr. Herre and D.Andrikopoulos)
Santiago Calatrava (renovation)
Official Website

The Olympic Stadium of Athens "Spyros Louis" (Greek: Ολυμπιακό Στάδιο Αθηνών "Σπύρος Λούης", Olympiakó Stádio Athinon "Spyros Louis") is a sports stadium in Athens, Greece. It is a part of the Athens Olympic Sports Complex and is named after the first modern Olympic marathon gold medalist in 1896, Spyros Louis. The stadium hosts two of the biggest sport clubs in Greece, Panathinaikos and AEK Athens. The stadium served as the main stadium during the 2004 Summer Olympics.

Spyros Louis Athens Olympic Stadium


Located in the area of Marousi in Athens, the stadium was originally designed in 1980 and built in 1980–1982. It was completed in time to host the 1982 European Championships in Athletics. It was inaugurated by the President of Greece at the time, Konstantinos Karamanlis, on 8 September 1982. One year later, in 1983, OAKA Stadium hosted the 1983 European Cup Final between Hamburger SV and Juventus (1-0). In 1987, the stadium hosted the 1986–87 European Cup Winners' Cup final between Ajax and Lokomotiv Leipzig (1-0). Olympic stadium is an UEFA category four stadium and is the largest stadium in Grecce. In 1994, OAKA Stadium hosted their second 1994 UEFA Champions League Final, this time contested between AC Milan and Barcelona (4-0). It also hosted several events of the 1991 Mediterranean Games and the 1997 World Championships in Athletics, sought in order to prove that it was capable of hosting major sporting events after the failure of Athens to win the 1996 Summer Olympics but successfully hosting the 2004 Summer Olympics.

It was extensively renovated in time for the 2004 Summer Olympics and the 2004 Summer Paralympics, including a roof designed by Santiago Calatrava, and innovatively positioned with Enerpac hydraulics.[3] The roof was added atop the sidelines and completed just in time for the opening of the Games. The stadium was then officially re-opened on 30 July 2004. It hosted the athletics events and the football finals at the Olympics and the athletics at the Paralympics.[4] It also hosted the opening ceremony on 13 August 2004, and the closing ceremony on 29 August 2004 along the paralympics ceremonies on 17 and 28 September. In 2007, OAKA Stadium hosted the 2007 UEFA Champions League Final between AC Milan and Liverpool (2-1). The stadium's attendance was reduced to 72,000 for the Olympics, the initial capacity was some 75,000, though only 69,618 seats were made publicly available for the track and field events and slightly more for the football final. The turf system consists of natural grass in modular containers which incorporate irrigation and drainage systems.


Olympic Stadium Athens OAKA plan.jpg


The foundation stone for the Olympic Stadium was laid on 7 January 1980. Its construction was revolutionary and involved the use of a prefabrication method for the 34 sets of pillars supporting the stands (each weighed 600 tons). About 26,000 seats of the lower tier were covered, while the stadium's most striking feature were the four leaning pillars that held its floodlights, each being 62 metres tall. The Athens Olympic Stadium was finally inaugurated in September 1982.


The stadium was renovated from 2002 until 2004 adding the famous roof for the 2004 Summer Olympics. The central lawn of O.A.K.A consists of approximately 6.000 plastic capsules inside which thermophile lawn is grown. The capsules are adjoining, their size is 1.2*1.2m and are situated on a flat cement surface of two acres, flanked by two lateral drainage channels. The irrigation of the lawn is achieved by 35 automatically elevated water launchers with the use of programmed irrigation. This system allows the movement of the lawn to an area outside the stadium in order for the surface to be used for different events. Thirty-four entrance gates provide access to the stands. Odd gate numbers (1 to 35) lead to the lower and even numbers (2 to 34) to the upper tier. There are no gates numbered 18 and 36, since the two video-scoreboards are located in their place. Additionally, the stadium features 17 VIP boxes and 3 parking lots. Due to its design, the stadium's tribunes have the ability to empty within 7 minutes.

Competition Area

  • 105X68m football field
  • 400m track of 9 lanes
  • 4 pole vault boxes
  • 4 circles for shot put
  • 2 lanes for javelin
  • 2 circles for discus throw (one of which is equipped with a safety net which can be transformed into a hammer circle)
  • 6 lanes for long jump and triple jump
  • 2 mattresses for high jump
  • 2 electronic scoreboards


Designed by the world-known Spanish architect Santiago Calatrava the roof cost €130 million. The two giant arcs have a total span of 304m and a maximum height of 72m. The roof has a total weight of 18,700 tons coverering by 5,000 polycarbonate panels which covers an area of 25,000 sq m. The west arc was assembled 72m from its final position and the east 65m - both later slid into place-. The roof is designed to withstand winds up to 120 km/h and earthquakes up to 8 richter scale.


Access by:

Car - Exit the city centre to the north via Kifissias Avenue and just follow the roadsigns to "OAKA". If you come from the Attiki Odos ring road, use exit 11 ("Kifissias - Ol. Stadium").

Bus - Use X14 from Syntagma Square in central Athens. It will take you directly to the Olympic Stadium. Allow at least 30', although this can vary a lot.

Metro - It is a 25' ride from the city centre ("Omonia"). Use line M1 and get off at "Irini" or "Neratziotissa". From there it is a 10' walk through the Olympic Complex to the stadium.


[citation needed]


Concerts at Olympic Stadium "Spiros Louis"
Date Artist Tour Attendance
3 October 1988 Sting, Peter Gabriel, Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band, Tracy Chapman, Youssou N'Dour, George Dalaras Human Rights Now! -
31 May 1989 Pink Floyd A Momentary Lapse of Reason 60,000
9 June 1992 Frank Sinatra - 18,000[5]
24 May 1993 Guns N' Roses Use Your Illusion 55,000
16 September 1998 The Rolling Stones Bridges to Babylon 79,446[6]
3 July 2001 Eros Ramazzotti Stilelibero -
20 July 2006 Shakira Oral Fixation Tour 40,000
26 July 2007 George Michael 25 Live 40,000
27 September 2008 Madonna Sticky & Sweet 75,637
28 May 2009 AC/DC Black Ice World Tour 50,000
8 July 2009 Carlos Santana Live Your Light 25,000
3 September 2010 U2 360° 82,662
13 July 2011 Pyx Lax Concert in memory of Manos Xydous 80,000
20 July 2011 Bon Jovi Open Air 60,652
4 September 2012 Red Hot Chili Peppers I'm With You approx.60,000
31 July 2013 Roger Waters The Wall 25,807
3 July 2014 Antonis Remos, Despoina Vandi, Melina Aslanidou, Michalis Kouinelis (Stavento) One Country, One Voice 50,000+
19 September 2014 Lady Gaga ArtRave: The Artpop Ball 26,860
9 June 2023 Celine Dion Courage World Tour [7]


See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d e "Description: Capacity". O.A.K.A. "Spiros Louis". Retrieved 29 December 2010.
  2. ^ 2004 Summer Olympics official report. Archived 19 August 2008 at the Wayback Machine Volume 2. pp. 242, 324. Accessed 22 December 2010.
  3. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 3 May 2012. Retrieved 7 March 2014.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  4. ^ 2004 Summer Olympics official report. Volume 2. pp. 242, 324.
  5. ^ http://articles.chicagotribune.com/1992-06-25/features/9202260048_1_promoters-athens-frank-sinatra
  6. ^ "Boxscore, Top 10 concert grosses". Billboard. Billboard Newspaper, Nielsen Business Media, Inc. 3 October 1998. p. 20. ISSN 0006-2510. Retrieved 2 May 2017.
  7. ^ https://www.celinedion.com/in-concert/

External links[edit]

Events and tenants
Preceded by
Stadion Evžena Rošického
European Athletics Championships
Main venue

Succeeded by
Preceded by
De Kuip
European Cup
Final venue

Succeeded by
Stadio Olimpico
Preceded by
Stade de Gerland
European Cup Winners' Cup
Final venue

Succeeded by
Stade de la Meinau
Preceded by
UEFA Champions League
Final venue

Succeeded by
Preceded by
IAAF World Championships in Athletics
Main venue

Succeeded by
Estadio de La Cartuja
Preceded by
Sydney Olympic Stadium
Summer Olympics
Opening and closing ceremonies

Succeeded by
Beijing National Stadium
Preceded by
Sydney Olympic Stadium
Summer Olympics
Olympic Athletics competitions
Main venue

Succeeded by
Beijing National Stadium
Preceded by
Sydney Olympic Stadium
Summer Olympics
Men's football final

Succeeded by
Beijing National Stadium
Preceded by
Stade de France
UEFA Champions League
Final venue

Succeeded by
Luzhniki Stadium