- Lloyd Brown
DRV PNK Stadium – Inter Miami CF
Photos Courtesy of Inter Miami CF
Stadium Info FANFARE Score: 3.43
DRV PNK Stadium 1350 NW 55th St Ft. Lauderdale, FL 33309
Year Opened: 2019 Capacity: 18,000
Miami CF’s Soccer Stadium is in the Pink
One of the newest teams in the MLS has a home venue that is hard to forget. Inter Miami CF joined the MLS and began to play in the DRV PNK Stadium in Ft. Lauderdale, FL in 2020. The stadium features a pink and gray color scheme in partnership with Auto Nation’s DRV PNK campaign. This program raises funds for research and patient programs in the fight against breast cancer. The team fully supports this program, as their kits and crest feature pink as well. The color pink was also chosen by the team as it is a color that is often seen in the art deco architecture in the Miami area.
The 18,000-seat venue is designed to serve as an interim home for the team while their permanent home is under design in the Freedom Park development located near Miami International Airport. Soccer icon David Beckham is part of the ownership group and serves as the team’s President of Soccer Operations. He is also the driving force behind the Freedom Park development.
The team reflects Miami’s unique cultural makeup. The official name of the team is Club Internacional de Futbol Miami, as the vast majority of the team’s supporters come from the many Latin communities found in the Miami area. First time attendees to a Miami game could easily feel they are in a stadium in South America.
Food & Beverage 3
At the time of our visit, there were stringent COVID protocols in place. The concession stands were offering only prepackaged items, such as candy and bottled drinks. We do not feel that we got a true feel for their regular food and beverage offerings. For this reason, we are scoring this segment as a “3” or average. The price boards did not list the usual offering or prices.
The energy level coming from the stands at DRV PNK Stadium is much more passionate than you typically find at an MLS game in other cities. The fans feel the team represents them at a personal level. The game day managers keep this energy level high with Latin music being played during a break in the action and frequent promotion of events that affect the community. A game at DRV PNK Stadium is a community celebration in addition to a sporting event.
DRV PNK Stadium’s biggest drawback is the neighborhood surrounding it. It has a private plane airport on the west side of the property, and an industrial area located to the east side of the stadium. The nearest places to eat include Chili’s Grill and Bar and the Moonlite Diner, which are both just off the I-95 exit. Two hotels located near the stadium are the Holiday Inn Express and Suites off of West Commercial Boulevard and the LaQuinta Inn and Suites off of West Cypress Creek Road. There are no attractions near DRV PNK Stadium.
There are three main supporter groups for the team. The Siege is very passionate, both in cheering for the team and in taking part in programs that support the community. Vice City is made up of the hard-core supporters who have relocated to the Miami area from locations throughout South America. The third group is the Southern Legion and is probably the most family-friendly of the three groups. This section is made up of parents with kids who proudly wear the jerseys of their youth soccer program.
Attendance at Inter Miami games was hurt early in the season, with season ticket holders only and social distancing in place. However, in mid-June 2021 these restrictions were removed, and the team has had capacity crowds.
The Inter Miami CF staff does an excellent job of creating a smooth flow throughout your visit to the stadium. All parking is by prepaid passes, with your parking lot assignment correlating with where you are sitting in the stadium. This is very important, as there are only four main entrances into the stadium, and the parking assignments keep the flow of fans into the stadium at an even pace, so you should not experience any long lines. Gates open one hour before the kickoff.
The concourse beneath the stands is wide enough to allow easy passage going in both directions. Concessions locations are frequent enough that you should not encounter any lines there either. All transactions at DRV PNK Stadium are done digitally, which really speeds up the process.
Return on Investment 3
A day or a night out at an Inter Miami game can prove rather costly. This begins in the parking area, where the parking passes run for $25 – $30. There are no neighboring parking lots in the area, so the stadium lots have a captive audience. Ticket prices reflect where you are sitting in the stadium. Seats on the VIP side of the field feature more suite-like accommodations, including suites at field level.
Seats on the VIP side of the field start at $70 and can run into the hundreds depending on what type of accommodations you want. The grandstand seats across the field run from $60 – $115, with the prices going up the closer you are to midfield. The North stands at the end of the pitch are reserved for the supporter groups and general admission seats, which cost $35. Tickets in the South end of the pitch cost $40.
The one thing that is priceless at the stadium is that fans on the sides of the pitch are covered by a cantilevered roof. Fans at the ends of the pitch are advised to bring a hat and lots of sunscreen, as South Florida experiences hot weather throughout the MLS season.
The Freedom Park development will include a 25,000-seat stadium, hotels, several public soccer fields for area youth teams to use, and a park. The completion date for the development has not yet been released.
The crest on the team’s kit uses the styles and colors that recall Miami’s architectural tradition. The logo features two great white herons, which are native to this part of Florida, their interlocking legs form an “M.”
Once the Freedom Park stadium opens, the Ft. Lauderdale CF team, which plays at the USL One level, will become the primary tenant at DRV PNK stadium.
CF Montreal is playing its home games at DRV PNK Stadium until the Canadian border reopens in conjunction with the COVID pandemic.
Even though DRV PNK Stadium is an “interim” stadium as far as the MLS team, we felt that it surpassed many of the permanent stadium experiences we have had in the league. Once we learned the reasoning behind the shocking pink color scheme, we salute the team and Auto Nation for promoting a noble cause in this fashion. Auto Nation contributes to breast cancer organizations every time there is a home shutout by the Inter Miami CF.