Last Friday we attended the BC Lions game against the Winnipeg Blue Bombers. And since so much has already been written about the horrendous loss that was the game, this post is actually about the venue, BC Place Stadium. This was our fourth game of the season and we have been pleased with some of the upgrades that have been completed such as the renovated washrooms and the new paint and facelift to the ramps. But this time we had the pleasure of sitting in the brand new 2009 Club Seats. The 1,000 new seats are located in the 300 level at the top of the lower bowl on the Lions side of the field accessible by elevator from the 200 level. As soon as we entered and found out that the food menu was better and the drink options included more that just the usual Russell Ale (which Tara hates) things were even better. The wider executive-style cushioned seating and the in-seat food and beverage service were a bonus. The food service was provided by CenterPlate and the staff members were all very friendly. It was also nice never to have to wait for a restroom. This is the way football (and all other sports for that matter) are meant to be watched!

The new Club Seat section and the current upgrades are part of Phase One of the $65 million, two-phase renovation plan for the Stadium. Phase Two is scheduled to be completed in 2011 and includes the installation of a state-of-the-art retractable roof and a centrally located electronic scoreboard. Soccer specifications will also be a part of the renovation as well as upper deck draping that will seamlessly limit the capacity of the stadium to 22,000 seats to make smaller events more intimate. So it seems that not only will we have the opportunity to watch the BC Lions in BC Place but the Vancouver Whitecaps too. It is just too bad that this important renovation could not have been planned before 2010 to showcase the new venue.