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Happy Birthday STAPLES Center

by Andrew Howard / Los Angeles Kings
STAPLES Center is undergoing a $20 million renovation.

Happy 10th birthday STAPLES Center!

Ten years ago, the STAPLES Center opened its doors as the new, shining home to the Los Angeles Kings, Los Angeles Lakers, Los Angeles Clippers, Los Angeles Sparks, and then-Los Angeles Avengers.

It was a jewel, nestled in the heart of downtown L.A. Much grander and more expansive than the Great Western Forum (Kings All-Time Arenas), former home of the Kings, Lakers, and Sparks, the STAPLES Center has witnessed its fair-share of important sporting events (nominate your favorite moments). The Lakers have won four NBA championships in the building, while the Sparks have won two WNBA titles.

In addition to Kings, Lakers, Clippers, and Sparks games, STAPLES Center has hosted such events as concerts, award shows, and the NCAA men's basketball Pacific Life Pac-10 Tournament.

"There are a lot of buildings out there designed for one purpose," general manager of STAPLES Center, Nokia Theatre, and L.A. Live, Lee Zeidman, told the Los Angeles Times. "I believe we're a truly multi-purpose building, and that's why we've been so successful in hosting so many events and myriad types of events. It's a user-friendly building."

In honor of the 10th anniversary of the building, $20 million has been spent in renovations and upgrades in an effort to maintain STAPLES Center as one of the top-notch facilities in the country.

Here is a rundown of some of the various renovations that have been made:

- San Manuel Club: One of the more expansive renovations that have been made at STAPLES Center has been to the San Manuel Club.

A total of 44 seats have been added, bringing the total capacity of the club to 445. The renovations have also led to an increase in visibility.

New furniture has been added, including new Panasonic flat screen televisions. New lighting and walls with energetic coloring have added and heightened the view experience one finds at the San Manuel Club.

- Lexus Club: The Lexus Club has added 48 new seats, as well as new furniture in the room and out on the patio and new carpet.

The Banquettes and wine cellar have been removed while a signature chandelier and new Panasonic flat screen televisions have been added.

There is a new rotunda entry to the club, allowing guests an opportunity to converse with one another before and after the game.

- Suite Levels: There have also been renovations made to the Suite Levels of the building.

New dark red paint on all of the walls and new carpeting highlight the work done to the furniture.

Stainless steel countertops have been added to the restaurants, Buss Stop and Cookes Corner.

The TicketMaster scanning system used for entry to the individual suites has also been upgraded, and now has the ability to post messages.

- Formerly the Royal Room: The space that used to be the Royal Room has been completely gutted and remodeled, resulting in an area triple in size.

Various renovations to the architecture have given it a more contemporary, futuristic, and high-end look, symbolizing the beginning of a new era at STAPLES Center.

It is now open to the general public, and has a new menu with a strong AB presence.

- Concourses: In addition to individual clubs and suites, renovations have been made to the concourses of the arena.

Red and purple paint, as well as new blue graphics, have been added to all of the stands, bars, and portables.

The STAR Plaza VIP has added new large framed photos with lighting, as well as a new chandelier.

The SW VIP added carpeting and three new chandeliers, while new Panasonic flat screen televisions were put in throughout the concourse levels.

- Event Level: On the Event Level, the locker room hallways have been upgraded to give the STAPLES Center a fresh, new look.

At the teams own expense, the Kings and the Lakers have remodeled their locker rooms.

"It becomes your building - this year we redid the locker room, there's a certain aura - it becomes your home," former Kings player and current team president, Luc Robitaille, said in an interview with the Los Angeles Times. "It's amazing how that really plays a role, and it's amazing to see a lot more home victories."

(Check out the new locker room. | Take a tour this Thursday.)

The Star Dressing Room has undergone a redesign, while new furniture, countertops, and stainless steel surrounds have been added throughout the level.

The loading dock area has been remodeled with a wrapping around design, while new Panasonic flat screen televisions have been added in the various rooms at the Event Level.

- City View Terrace: The only significant renovation done here was the addition of new furniture.

- Hyde Lounge: This 175-person lounge will open on Oct. 27 when the Lakers open their regular season against the Clippers.

It is a $1.3 million project is modeled after the SBE club of the same name which opened in April, 2006 on Sunset Blvd.

The arenas food provider, Levy Restaurants, will operate the club along with on-site managers representing the two firms.

There will also be an exclusive VIP space that encompasses eight suites with table service with a private mixoligist.

The Lounge will have ledge seats overlooking the bowl with high-end leather furniture, rich fabrics, strong earth tones and hand-carved finishes.

The focus of the Hyde Lounge will be to attract the young and trendy crowd of the generation, the 21 to 35 year olds who have the ability to pay $400 for a bottle of champagne served tableside.

In the first year of the Lounge's operation, it will be open to courtside ticket holders and suite owners. To this end, AEG sold a block of tickets to Lakers, Clippers, and Kings games, as well as various other events, to SBE to distribute amongst its customers in an effort to generate interest in the new club.

In the second year, the plan is to sell memberships. As of now the prices have yet to be determined, and the first year will provide research that will go towards setting the future prices.

These are some of the renovations that have been made to STAPLES Center in an effort to keep the building looking brand new, and to prepare it for another great 10 years in the future.

"I certainly have some great memories of the Forum and playing there, but when you think of L.A., you think it has the best of everything," Robitaille told the Los Angeles Times. "STAPLES Center is L.A."

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