American Airlines Arena

The American Airlines Arena is a sports and entertainment arena located in Downtown Miami, Florida along Biscayne Bay. It was constructed beginning in 1998 as a replacement for the Miami Arena and designed by the architecture firms Arquitectonica and 360 Architecture. The Arena is home to the Miami Heat of the National Basketball Association.

The American Airlines Arena is directly served by the Miami Metrorail at Government Center station via free transfers to Metromover Omni Loop, providing direct service to Freedom Tower and Park West stations. The Arena is also within walking distance from the Historic Overtown/Lyric Theatre Metrorail station.

The American Airlines Arena has 2,105 club seats, 80 luxury suites, and 76 private boxes. The Waterfront Theater is Florida's largest theater which is housed within the arena, that can seat between 3,000 and 5,800. The theater can be configured for concerts, family events, musical theatre and other stage shows. American Airlines which has a hub at Miami International Airport maintains the American Airlines Arena Travel Center at the venue.[7]

The airline also holds the naming rights for another NBA venue, the American Airlines Center for the Dallas Mavericks and the Dallas Stars[8], which opened in 2001.

American Airlines Arena
The Triple A
American Airlines Arena logo
American Airlines Arena
Looking east to the main facade of American Airlines Arena
American Airlines Arena is located in Miami
American Airlines Arena
American Airlines Arena
Location in Miami
American Airlines Arena is located in Florida
American Airlines Arena
American Airlines Arena
Location in Florida
American Airlines Arena is located in the United States
American Airlines Arena
American Airlines Arena
Location in the United States
Address601 Biscayne Boulevard
LocationMiami, Florida
Coordinates25°46′53″N 80°11′17″W / 25.78139°N 80.18806°WCoordinates: 25°46′53″N 80°11′17″W / 25.78139°N 80.18806°W
Public transitMetrorail (Miami-Dade County) Government Center
Metrorail (Miami-Dade County) Historic Overtown/Lyric Theatre
Parking939 parking spaces
OwnerMiami-Dade County
OperatorBasketball Properties Ltd.
CapacityBasketball: 19,600;
16,500 (Without upper levels)
Concerts: 5,000-20,021
Broke groundFebruary 6, 1998
OpenedDecember 31, 1999
Construction cost$213 million
($320 million in 2018 dollars[1])
360 Architecture (formerly Heinlein Schrock Stearns)
Project managerParsons Brinckerhoff
Structural engineerThornton Tomasetti
Services engineerFlack+Kurtz[2]
General contractorMorse-Diesel/Odebrecht/Facchina[3]
Main contractorsJohn J. Kirlin, LLC[4]
Simpson Constructors[5]
Crown Corr Inc.[6]
Miami Heat (NBA) (2000–present)
Miami Sol (WNBA) (2000–2002)


The American Airlines Arena opened on December 31, 1999 and its construction cost was $213 million. Architectural design team members included George Heinlein, Cristian Petschen, Reinaldo Borges, and Lance Simon. The American Airlines Arena was inaugurated with a concert by Gloria Estefan. Two days later, on January 2, 2000, the Miami Heat played its first game in the new arena by defeating the Orlando Magic 111–103.

AAArena Night
The main façade of the arena at night

As part of its sponsorship arrangement, American Airlines had a giant aircraft painted atop the arena's roof, with an American Airlines logo in the center. The design is visible from airplanes taking off and landing at Miami International Airport, where American has a hub. The arena also has luxury skyboxes called "Flagship Lounges", a trademark originally used for American's premium-class lounges at certain airports.

Local sportscasters often refer to the arena as the "triple-A". Some sports reporters on the local news stations such as WSVN have referred to the arena as "A3" (A cubed). The arena is known for its unusual scoreboard, designed by Artist Christopher Janney. Drawing on the underwater anemone forms, the scoreboard also changes colors depending on the atmosphere. For concerts in an arena configuration, end stage capacity is 12,202 for 180° shows, 15,402 for 270° shows, 18,309 for 360° shows. For center stage concerts the arena can seat 19,146.

The Miami Heat has not had to pay to use the $357-million venue, which sits on $38 million of county land; the county has paid $64 million in operating subsidies. "It was never a good deal," says former Miami-Dade Commissioner Katy Sorenson, who opposed the new arena in 1996. "There are certain politicians who just get stars in their eyes and don't really think about what the real cost is going to be."

WTVJ, the city's NBC owned-and-operated station in Miami, had their Downtown Miami Studios in the back of the arena from 2001 till 2011.

Despite American Airlines' logo change, American Airlines Arena still uses the airline's old logo.



American Airlines Arena, June 2015
The arena as seen from Freedom Tower station.

Traffic congestion after events can cause delays for those who choose to drive to the arena. Visitors to the American Airlines Arena are encouraged to take Metrorail, Metromover, or Metrobus, as parking can be scarce and expensive. Metromover's Freedom Tower station is located two blocks west of the arena. The nearest Metrorail stations are Government Center and Historic Overtown. The Metromover is free to ride and connects to Metrorail at Government Center station.

Parking on-site

American Airlines Arena features 939 parking spaces during HEAT Games. On-site parking is reserved for Premium seat and Dewar's 12 Clubhouse ticket holders. On-site parking spaces must be pre-purchased through the Arena's Official Parking Provider, ParkJockey.[9][10]

Notable events


Game 3 of the 2006 NBA Finals
The arena during game 3 of the 2006 NBA Finals

Professional wrestling

The arena hosted World Championship Wrestling's Uncensored pay-per-view in 2000. Three major WWE pay-per-view events have been held at the arena: the Royal Rumble in 2006, and Survivor Series in 2007 and 2010.

Other sports

  • The American Airlines Arena also hosted the first UFC event in the state of Florida, UFC 42: Sudden Impact, on April 25, 2003.
  • The NFL Honors is scheduled for American Airlines Arena in 2020.


Shakira Stops By Soundcheck cropped
Shakira has performed 9 sold out shows in American Airlines Arena, the most number of appearances at the venue among all the artists. She also holds the record of having most shows in the venue within one single tour, Oral Fixation Tour in 2006, with 5 sold out shows.



Arena during the 2004 NBA Playoffs


Front view of the AAA in July 2010

American Airlines Arena backside

View from Biscayne Bay

Downtown Miami at night American Airlines Arena

View from the north at night

American Airlines Arena night cropped

Arena at night


  1. ^ Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis Community Development Project. "Consumer Price Index (estimate) 1800–". Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. Retrieved January 2, 2019.
  2. ^ "Westchester Reform Temple, Rogers Marvel Architects".
  3. ^ "Facchina Group of Companies, LLC — Facchina Construction Company". Archived from the original on 2012-04-02. Retrieved 2011-09-10.
  4. ^ American Airlines Arena Archived 2011-09-14 at the Wayback Machine Kirlin
  5. ^ Past Projects Archived 2012-04-02 at the Wayback Machine Simpson Constructors
  6. ^ American Airlines Arena Crown Corr
  7. ^ "Miami And Coral Gables, FL Travel Center Archived 2009-04-06 at the Wayback Machine." American Airlines. Retrieved on April 9, 2009.
  8. ^ " SPORTSBUSINESS - Stadium naming rights". Retrieved 2019-04-14.
  9. ^ "The HEAT Group Teams Up With New Parking App, ParkJockey". Miami Heat.
  10. ^ Sentenac, Hannah (2014-10-30). "Avoid Parking Hell at Miami Heat Games With ParkJockey App". Retrieved 2016-07-25.
  11. ^ Lindner, Emily (March 28, 2015). "Justin Bieber Joined Ariana Grande Onstage And She Rapped Big Sean's Part On 'As Long As You Love Me'". MTV. Viacom. Retrieved March 29, 2015.
  12. ^ Sonawane, Vishakha (March 16, 2016). "Rihanna Performs Raunchy Moves With Drake At 'Anti' Tour Amid Dating Rumors". International Business Times. Retrieved March 16, 2016.
  13. ^ Chatterjee, Kika (June 11, 2016). "Twenty One Pilots, more dedicate songs to Christina Grimmie's memory—watch". Alternative Press. Retrieved June 13, 2016.
  14. ^ Crandell, Ben (2016-10-25). "Review: Adele dazzles Miami crowd, Hillary Clinton". Retrieved 2016-10-26.

External links

2003–04 Miami Heat season

The 2003–04 NBA season was the 16th season for the Miami Heat in the National Basketball Association. This season saw the team draft future All-Star and 3-time NBA Champion Dwyane Wade with the fifth overall pick in the 2003 NBA draft, while acquiring forward Lamar Odom from the Los Angeles Clippers. Before the season began, head coach Pat Riley resigned, but he would later return midway in the 2005–06 season and help guide the Heat to their first ever NBA championship. Under new head coach Stan Van Gundy, the Heat stumbled out of the gate losing their first seven games. However, the team would play .500 basketball for the remainder of the season winning 14 of their final 17 games. Despite posting a mediocre 42–40 record, the Heat entered the playoffs as the #4 seed in the Eastern Conference. Wade had a stellar rookie season averaging 16.2 points per game, and was selected to the All-Rookie First Team.

The first round series pitted the Heat against the New Orleans Hornets, their first meeting since 2001. At that time, the Hornets were in Charlotte and they swept the Heat in three straight games. The Heat would go on to defeat New Orleans in seven games. They advanced to the Conference Semifinals for the first time since 2000. However, they went no further as they fell to the top-seeded Indiana Pacers in six games.

Following the season, Odom, second-year forward Caron Butler, and Brian Grant were all traded to the Los Angeles Lakers.

2005–06 Miami Heat season

The 2005–06 Miami Heat season was the 18th National Basketball Association season for the Miami Heat basketball franchise. During the offseason, the Heat acquired Jason Williams and James Posey from the Memphis Grizzlies, and All-Star forward Antoine Walker from the Boston Celtics, while signing free agent All-Star point guard Gary Payton. Early into the season, after a 15-12 start to the year, head coach Stan Van Gundy resigned, citing the desire to spend more time with his family, and Pat Riley resume coaching the Heat. The Heat went 39-23 the rest of the way, finishing with a 52-30 record, good enough for first place in the Southeast Division and second place in the Eastern Conference overall. Dwyane Wade and Shaquille O'Neal were both selected for the 2006 NBA All-Star Game.

In the first round of the playoffs, the Heat defeated the Chicago Bulls in six games, and the New Jersey Nets in five games in the semifinals to advance to the Eastern Conference Finals against the Detroit Pistons in a rematch of last year's playoffs. After splitting the first two games of the series, the Heat defeated the Pistons in six games to advance to the NBA Finals for the first time in franchise history, where they faced the Dallas Mavericks. After losing the first two games of the series, the Heat recovered to win the next four games and the first ever championship in franchise history. The team was nicknamed "15 Strong".

2008–09 Miami Heat season

The 2008–09 Miami Heat season was the 21st season of the franchise in the National Basketball Association (NBA).

Following a disastrous 15-67 season, Pat Riley resigned as head coach, and promoted Heat assistant Erik Spoelstra to become the new head coach; he was the youngest NBA head coach at the time of his hiring. With a healthy Dwyane Wade back in the lineup, the Heat greatly improved on their regular season record and returned to the playoffs, but were eliminated in the first round to the Atlanta Hawks in seven games, all of which were decided by double-digit margins.

2009–10 Miami Heat season

The 2009–10 Miami Heat season was the 22nd season of the Miami Heat in the National Basketball Association (NBA). The Heat made the playoffs for the second straight year under Spoelstra. They failed to make it out of the first round once again as they were overpowered by a Boston Celtics squad that featured Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce and Ray Allen in five games. Boston eventually lost in seven games to the Los Angeles Lakers in the NBA Finals.

2010–11 Miami Heat season

The 2010–11 Miami Heat season was the 23rd season of the Miami Heat in the National Basketball Association (NBA). In the regular season, the Heat finished first in the Southeast Division with 58–24 record, and made the NBA Playoffs for the 3rd consecutive year as the Eastern Conference's No. 2 seed (behind the Chicago Bulls).

With the acquisition of free agents LeBron James and Chris Bosh in the off season, the Heat opened the season with extraordinarily high expectations, with many expecting a championship in the first year of the new lineup, and with team stars and 2003 draftees Chris Bosh, Dwyane Wade and LeBron James predicting an NBA championship in their first season together. However, they fell just short by losing to the Dallas Mavericks in 6 games in the NBA Finals, in a rematch of the 2006 NBA Finals, in which the Heat won in 6 games, as well as their first championship.

Even though the Heat's season ended in disappointing fashion, they enjoyed a successful season, despite a slow 9–8 start to the regular season. They finished the regular season with 58 wins, won the Southeast Division, and were second in the Eastern Conference. Pat Riley was named NBA Executive of the Year. Dwyane Wade, LeBron James, and Chris Bosh were all selected to the 2011 NBA All-Star Game, the most Heat players in an All-Star game in franchise history. LeBron James earned All-NBA First Team honors, while Dwyane Wade earned All-NBA Second Team honors.

In the NBA Playoffs, Miami defeated the Philadelphia 76ers in the first round, Boston Celtics in the Eastern Conference Semifinals, and Chicago Bulls in the Conference Finals all in 5 games; however, they lost to the Dallas Mavericks in the Finals in 6 games.

2011–12 Miami Heat season

The 2011–12 Miami Heat season was the franchise's 24th season in the National Basketball Association (NBA). They came into the season as the defending Eastern Conference champions, the second season playing with the "Big Three" of Dwyane Wade, LeBron James, and Chris Bosh, and the fourth season under head coach Erik Spoelstra. Prior to the beginning of the season, they looked to bounce back from their disappointing finish to the previous year where they lost to the Dallas Mavericks in the NBA Finals. Following the 2011 NBA lockout the Heat played only 66 games this season. They won their division for the 9th time and appeared in the Eastern Conference Finals for the 5th time. For the second year in a row, Dwyane Wade, LeBron James, and Chris Bosh were all selected to the NBA All-Star Game, tying the record for the most Heat players in an All-Star game in franchise history.

On June 9, 2012, the Heat beat the Boston Celtics to advance to the NBA Finals for the second consecutive year and 3rd time in franchise history. On June 21, the Miami Heat won the NBA Championship at home against the Oklahoma City Thunder, 4–1, following their 121–106 Game 5 victory to become the 2012 NBA Champions, the 2nd Championship for the franchise. LeBron James won his first NBA championship, and was awarded the 2012 NBA Finals MVP.

2012–13 Miami Heat season

The 2012–13 Miami Heat season was the franchise's 25th season in the National Basketball Association (NBA). They came into the season as the defending NBA champions, back-to-back Eastern Conference champions, the third season playing with the "Big Three" of Dwyane Wade, LeBron James, and Chris Bosh, and the fifth season under head coach Erik Spoelstra. During the season, the Heat embarked on a 27-game winning streak, which at the time ranked as the second longest winning streak in NBA history. On June 3, 2013, the Heat defeated the Indiana Pacers in game seven of the Eastern Conference Finals to become the first team since the Chicago Bulls in 1998 to Three-peat as Eastern Conference champions. The Heat then defeated the San Antonio Spurs in an NBA Finals that went the full seven games, handing the Spurs their very first loss in the NBA Finals, and with this victory in the NBA Finals, it echoed the 1997–98 Bulls as they had also been the last Eastern team to repeat as NBA champions. This Miami Heat team is regarded by most fans as one of their best teams to ever play.

2013–14 Miami Heat season

The 2013–14 Miami Heat season was the franchise's 26th season in the National Basketball Association (NBA). They entered the season as three-time defending Eastern Conference champions and as two-time defending NBA champions, having defeated the San Antonio Spurs in the 2013 NBA Finals in seven games. In defeating the Spurs in 2013, the Heat handed the Spurs their first-ever series loss in the NBA Finals. The 2013-2014 season was the Heat's fourth and final season playing with the "Big Three" of Dwyane Wade, LeBron James, and Chris Bosh and their sixth season under head coach Erik Spoelstra.

In a rematch of the previous year's Eastern Conference Finals, the Heat defeated the Indiana Pacers in six games to become the first team to win four consecutive Eastern Conference championships since the Boston Celtics did so in the 1984-1987 seasons. Miami's quest for a three-peat ended when the San Antonio Spurs, whom they met in a rematch of the 2013 NBA Finals, won the NBA Finals by a 4-1 margin.

Following the season, LeBron James left the Heat in free agency to rejoin the Cleveland Cavaliers.

2014–15 Miami Heat season

The 2014–15 Miami Heat season is the 27th season of the franchise in the National Basketball Association (NBA). For the first time since 2010, LeBron James was not on the roster as he returned to the Cleveland Cavaliers. The Heat entered the 2014–15 season as the defending Eastern Conference champions without LeBron James, and were coming off of an NBA Finals loss in five games to the San Antonio Spurs. Although they remained in playoff contention until early April, the Heat were eliminated from playoff contention after their game 80 loss to the Toronto Raptors. The Heat failed to make the playoffs for the first time since 2008 after a four-year trip to the Finals, winning two in 2012 and 2013, and first team to fail to make the playoffs after making it to the NBA Finals from the previous season since the 2004–05 Los Angeles Lakers.

For the first time since 1995-96, Ray Allen was not in the NBA as he sat out this season as a free agent and retired in 2015. Allen played with the Heat for 2 seasons where he helped them win a championship in 2013, his second ring after winning one in 2008 with the Boston Celtics.

2015–16 Miami Heat season

The 2015–16 Miami Heat season was the 28th season of the franchise in the National Basketball Association (NBA).During the season, the Heat dealt fan favorites and recent champions Mario Chalmers and Chris Andersen to the Memphis Grizzlies and picked up seven-time All-Star Joe Johnson after Johnson and the Brooklyn Nets agreed to a buyout-waiver near the end of the regular season. They also shot a franchise-high FG% of 67.5% in a game versus the Chicago Bulls on March 1. Center Hassan Whiteside would also lead the NBA in blocks this season. The Heat ended the year as the 3rd seed in the east and as the Southeast Division champions for the 12th time in franchise history, with both the overall playoff spot and division title coming after a disappointing, lottery-bound 2014–15 season in the aftermath of LeBron James returning to the Cleveland Cavaliers as a free agent, thus defeating the Charlotte Hornets in the first round of the playoffs. The Heat finished their 2015–16 run in a Game 7 (89-116) loss against the Toronto Raptors in the conference semifinals.

After 13 years, it marked the end of the Dwyane Wade era as he signed with his hometown team, the Chicago Bulls. However, he later returned to the team at the trade deadline of the 2017–18 NBA season.

Chris Bosh played his final home game versus the San Antonio Spurs on February 9, 2016, as he would sit out the next season due to blood clotting issues and would be waived by the Heat in July of 2017. Despite rumors of a possible return to the league to play for the Toronto Raptors, Golden State Warriors, or Houston Rockets, Bosh formally announced his retirement from the NBA after 14 years, on February 12, 2019 and a month later, the Heat retired his No. 1 jersey.

2016–17 Miami Heat season

The 2016–17 Miami Heat season was the 29th season of the franchise in the National Basketball Association (NBA). After a tumultuous negotiation process, Dwyane Wade decided to leave the Heat and sign with the Chicago Bulls in the offseason. This was the first season without Wade since 2003. Furthermore, Chris Bosh missed the entire season and had thought about potentially retiring altogether due to his continuous blood clots. It was the NBA’s first full season without Bosh since 2002-03, and the Heat’s first since 2009-10. Bosh then announced his retirement from the NBA on February 12, 2019.The team got off to an 11–30 start. However the Heat rallied to a 30–11 finish, only to be eliminated all the same on their last game of the season. They entered game 82 needing a loss from either the Pacers or the Bulls and a victory over the Wizards. However, despite a 110–102 win over the Washington Wizards, both the Pacers and the Bulls won their games. The Heat finished tied with the Chicago Bulls with identical 41–41 records but the Bulls won the head-to-head tie breaker against the Heat 2–1. As a result, the Heat missed the playoffs for the second time in three years. Hassan Whiteside earned praise for being the NBA's leading rebounder after ending his previous season as the leading shot blocker of the NBA.

2017–18 Miami Heat season

The 2017–18 Miami Heat season was the 30th season of the franchise in the National Basketball Association (NBA). On the February 8, 2018 NBA trade deadline, the Heat regained star shooting guard Dwyane Wade from the Cleveland Cavaliers in exchange for a future second round pick, reuniting him with the Heat after losing him to free agency in July 2016. Despite a loss to the Oklahoma City Thunder on April 9, 2018,The Miami Heat clinched their playoff berth for the eighth time in the last ten seasons. Furthermore, they would win their division on April 11 with an overtime win over the Toronto Raptors and having the Washington Wizards lose to the Orlando Magic, thus making them the lowest seeded playoff team to win a division championship since the NBA changed how playoff seedings would be placed back in 2016.

They finished the regular season with 44–38, which clinched the 6th seed and the Southeast Division. In the playoffs, the Heat faced the 3rd seeded Philadelphia 76ers in the First Round and were defeated in 5 games.

2018–19 Miami Heat season

The 2018–19 Miami Heat season was the 31st season of the franchise in the National Basketball Association (NBA).

This was Dwyane Wade's final season, after playing 16 years in the league. Believed by many fans as the greatest Heat player of all time, Wade led the team to their first championship title in 2006, and led the team to back-to-back titles in 2012 and 2013. He also led the team to 11 playoff appearances, 1 Conference Finals (2005), and NBA Finals appearances in 2011 and 2014. Including his honorary All-Star spot this season, Wade also has 13 total NBA All-Star Game appearances to his name.

On February 4, 2019, the Heat announced their retirement of Chris Bosh's jersey with the team on March 26 against the Orlando Magic. However, this season would result of getting eliminated from playoff contention on April 9th, due to the Pistons beating the Grizzlies.

Freedom Tower station

Freedom Tower is a Metromover station in Downtown, Miami, Florida, directly west of the Freedom Tower and the American Airlines Arena.

The station is located at the intersection of Northeast Sixth Street and Second Avenue, opening to service May 26, 1994.

KOD Tour

The KOD Tour was the eighth headlining concert tour by American recording artist J. Cole, in support his fifth studio album, KOD (2018). The tour began on August 9, 2018, in Miami, at the American Airlines Arena, and concluded on October 10, 2018, in Boston, at TD Garden.

Live! The Farewell Tour

Live! The Farewell Tour is the only live album by Cher. The album was recorded at the American Airlines Arena in Miami, Florida, United States on a show from her Living Proof: The Farewell Tour.

Park West station

Park West is a Metromover station in the Park West neighborhood of Downtown, Miami, Florida.

This station is located at the intersection of Northeast Second Avenue and Eighth Street. It opened to service May 26, 1994, and is two blocks northwest of the American Airlines Arena.

UFC 42

UFC 42: Sudden Impact was a mixed martial arts event held by the Ultimate Fighting Championship on April 25, 2003, at American Airlines Arena in Miami, Florida. The event was broadcast live on pay-per-view in the United States, and later released on DVD.

WWE Hall of Fame (2012)

WWE Hall of Fame (2012) was the event which featured the introduction of the 13th class to the WWE Hall of Fame. The event was produced by WWE on March 31, 2012 from the American Airlines Arena in Miami, Florida. The event took place the same weekend as WrestleMania XXVIII. The event was hosted by Jerry Lawler. A condensed one-hour version of the ceremony aired on the USA Network the following Monday, before Raw. In March 2015 the ceremony was added to the WWE Network.

Events and tenants
Preceded by
Miami Arena
Home of the Miami Heat
Succeeded by
Preceded by
Home of the Miami Sol
Succeeded by
Preceded by
Save Mart Center
Home of the Royal Rumble
Succeeded by
AT&T Center
G League affiliate
Retired numbers
NBA Championships
Culture and lore
Eastern Conference
Western Conference
Central business district
Major urban areas
and universities
Parks and recreation
Major shopping centers
Major thoroughfares
Music venues of Florida
Theaters and clubs
Performing arts centers
Historic venues
Mergers and

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