There have been 55 Super Bowls. With such a long and storied history, there have been enough Super Bowls that every state could have hosted the event at least once. You’d be forgiven for thinking that, with so many Super Bowls, there must be close to 50 different host cities.
However, Super Bowls are, more often than not, played in the same few cities. There are some good reasons for that – which we’ll discuss in this article. But before we do that, let’s take a look at the past Super Bowl hosts:
Past Super Bowl locations
|Super Bowl||City (# if repeat)||Stadium (# if repeat)|
|I||Los Angeles||Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum|
|II||Miami||Miami Orange Bowl|
|III||Miami (2)||Miami Orange Bowl (2)|
|IV||New Orleans||Tulane Stadium|
|V||Miami (3)||Miami Orange Bowl (3)|
|VI||New Orleans (2)||Tulane Stadium (2)|
|VII||Los Angeles (2)||Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum (2)|
|IX||New Orleans (3)||Tulane Stadium (3)|
|X||Miami (4)||Miami Orange Bowl (4)|
|XI||Pasadena (3*)||Rose Bowl|
|XII||New Orleans (4)||Louisiana Superdome|
|XIII||Miami (5)||Miami Orange Bowl (5)|
|XIV||Pasadena (4)||Rose Bowl (2)|
|XV||New Orleans (5)||Louisiana Superdome (2)|
|XVII||Pasadena (5)||Rose Bowl (3)|
|XX||New Orleans (6)||Louisiana Superdome (3)|
|XXI||Pasadena (6)||Rose Bowl (4)|
|XXII||San Diego||San Diego–Jack Murphy Stadium|
|XXIII||Miami (6)||Joe Robbie Stadium|
|XXIV||New Orleans (7)||Louisiana Superdome (4)|
|XXV||Tampa (2)||Tampa Stadium (2)|
|XXVII||Pasadena (7)||Rose Bowl (5)|
|XXIX||Miami (7)||Joe Robbie Stadium|
|XXX||Tempe||Sun Devil Stadium|
|XXXI||New Orleans (8)||Louisiana Superdome (5)|
|XXXII||San Diego (2)||Qualcomm Stadium (2)******|
|XXXIII||Miami (8)||Pro Player Stadium (3)*******|
|XXXIV||Atlanta (2)||Georgia Dome (2)|
|XXXV||Tampa (3)||Raymond James Stadium|
|XXXVI||New Orleans (9)||Louisiana Superdome (6)|
|XXXVII||San Diego (3)||Qualcomm Stadium (3)|
|XXXVIII||Houston (2)||Reliant Stadium|
|XL||Detroit (2)**||Ford Field|
|XLI||Miami Gardens (9)***||Dolphin Stadium (4)*******|
|XLII||Glendale, AZ (2)****||University of Phoenix Stadium|
|XLIII||Tampa (4)||Raymond James Stadium (2)|
|XLIV||Miami Gardens (10)||Sun Life Stadium (5)*******|
|XLVI||Indianapolis||Lucas Oil Stadium|
|XLVII||New Orleans (10)||Mercedes-Benz Superdome (7)********|
|XLVIII||East Rutherford||MetLife Stadium|
|XLIX||Glendale, CA (3)||University of Phoenix Stadium (2)|
|L||Santa Clara (2)*****||Levi’s Stadium|
|LI||Houston (3)||NRG Stadium (2)*********|
|LII||Minneapolis (2)||U.S. Bank Stadium|
|LIII||Atlanta (3)||Mercedes-Benz Stadium (not to be confused with Mercedes-Benz Superdome)|
|LIV||Miami Gardens (11)||Hard Rock Stadium (6)*******|
|LV||Tampa (5)||Raymond James Stadium|
*Pasadena and Glendale are close enough to L.A. to consider them the same for our purposes
** Pontiac is close enough to Michigan to consider them the same for our purposes
***As you can imagine, Miami Gardens is close enough to Miami to consider them the same for our purposes
**** Santa Clara is close enough to Stanford to consider them the same for our purposes
***** Glendale is close enough to Tempe to consider them the same for our purposes
******The San Diego Jack Murphy Stadium was renamed the Qualcomm Stadium
*******The Joe Robbie Stadium/Dolphin Stadium/Sun Life Stadium/Hard Rock Stadium are the same. A rose is a rose (but not a Rose Bowl)
********The Mercedes-Benz Superdome and the Louisiana Superdome are the same
*********NRG Stadium was previously known as Reliant Stadium
Florida has played host to the Super Bowl an astonishing 16 times, while California comes in second with 12 opportunities to have played host. That means that more than half of all Super Bowls were played in Florida or California.
That’s a pretty astonishing figure – but there are good reasons for it. Not just any city can play host to the Super Bowl. There are a variety of conditions that have to be met if a city wants to host the big football game, including:
- Appropriate weather conditions (the average game day temperature must be over 50º F, or the stadium must be enclosed with a roof)
- Enough seating – at least 70,000 seats
- At least 35,000 parking spaces within a mile of the stadium
- A lot of space for the Gameday Experience and the NFL Experience – the latter of which requires anywhere from 850,000 to 1,000,000 square feet of space
- Enough hotels, infrastructure, etc.
As much as smaller cities would love to host the Super Bowl, most of them simply don’t meet the requirements.
Now that we know a bit about the Super Bowl’s history, and how many times each city has hosted, let’s take a look at why cities might opt to host the event.
Benefits for the host city
Whether or not the Super Bowl actually brings benefits to the host city is a pressing question – and one that does not have a definitive answer. The NFL claims that host cities can bring in $300 to $500 million dollars by hosting the big game – and that would be indisputably profitable.
Here’s the problem: that figure is disputable. One economist says that the Super Bowl brings in $30 to $130 million. And because a new stadium can cost $250 million (and for 70K seats, a new stadium is usually a requirement), the city that’s hosting may end up losing money. And that’s without even accounting for the other infrastructure costs.
Then again, other economists argue that the long-term economic benefits of the Super Bowl outweigh its costs. They also point to the surge in happiness that city residents will see before, during, and after the event – and it’s difficult to calculate the economic impact of happiness. Who wouldn’t be smiling when the biggest football game of the year comes to town?
There’s one other potential benefit for the host city we want to talk about. If your home stadium is in the city that’s hosting, does it have an impact?
We have incredibly little data on that point. Tampa is technically the only team to have played in their home stadium – and they won. So, technically, hosts whose teams are playing in the Super Bowl have a 100% win rate.
That’s obviously junk data – one instance does not make for good statistics. Two other NFL teams played in their home cities when they were hosting, however – the Los Angeles Rams in Super Bowl XIV (they lost), and the 49ers in Super Bowl XIX (they won). In both cases, the stadium that hosted the Super Bowl was not the team’s home stadium.
Now that you know why cities might want to host the Super Bowl, and which cities have hosted in the past, let’s look at future Super Bowl locations:
Future Super Bowl Locations
We know where we’ve played football in the past – where are we going to do it in the future? Believe it or not, we’ve got some insight into which cities are going to host the Super Bowl for the next few years.
|Super Bowl||City (# if repeat)||Stadium (# if repeat)|
|LVI||Inglewood (8)*||SoFi Stadium|
|LVII||Glendale (4)||State Farm Stadium (3)**|
|LVIV||New Orleans (11)||Caesar Superdome (8)***|
*Inglewood is part of the Greater L.A. area
**The State Farm Stadium was previously the University of Phoenix Stadium
***The Caesar Superdome was previously the Mercedes-Benz Superdome – and the Louisiana Superdome before that
With this Super Bowl LVIV, New Orleans ties Miami as the city that has hosted the Super Bowl the most often. The Superdome, in its various incarnations, has played host to the big game more often than any other stadium.
Now you know everything you’ve ever needed to know about Super Bowl host cities – and if you live in L.A., New Orleans, or Miami, there’s a pretty good chance your city has played host to the event once or twice.
Go out and win games of Trivial Pursuit! Impress your friends with your Super Bowl knowledge! We’d generally advise against placing bets on where, say, Super Bowl LXX would be played – but if you’re going to place a bet, New Orleans, L.A., and Miami seem like decent places to put your money. (Again, this is not professional advice).
If you want even more in depth football knowledge, check out our NFL picks!