Michael Bidwill took the local media on a tour of University of Phoenix Stadium's club level before Saturday's preseason opener against the Chargers, pointing out myriad upgrades from a recent $28 million renovation.
Throughout the trip, Cardinals fans stopped the team's president to express their appreciation for the new amenities. Bidwill had an idea the reaction would be positive, but hearing it for himself was confirmation the upgrades hit their mark.
"We knew from focus groups and some of the other research that these were going to be very popular," Bidwill said. "But (it's) until you actually hear it from the fans on game days. That was very rewarding to hear it today. I'm excited. I know everybody's going to love it."
The Cardinals' renovation and expansion began two years ago and has been fully completed in time for the 2018 season.
The most recent phase included the creation of "The Tail Feather," a speakeasy lounge and full-service bar located on the northeast side of the stadium. The lounge offers fans an electric, Art Deco atmosphere. Other club level upgrades include new bars and food service in all four corners, new flooring, new lighting, more televisions, a new sound system and new furniture.
A specialty lounge area called the "Bird's Nest" boasts a new bar and buffet, as well as extensive millwork finishes and new furniture. All the restrooms on the club level were completely renovated with new floors, ceilings, lighting, wall tile and a stone vanity.
Images from team president Michael Bidwill's tour of the club level before Saturday's preseason game
Bidwill said the upgrades were essential in bringing the recent Final Four and the 2023 Super Bowl to the stadium.
"All these investments are paying off," Bidwill said.
In the first phase of the upgrades in 2017, the Cardinals enhanced and expanded pre-existing areas including the creation of "Flight Lounge," an intimate bar setting which features rotating brands of wine each week. The renovation also included the addition of "Bubble Lounge," a high-end, full-service bar that specializes in champagne and wine. Bidwill said there was a focus on making the club level a female-friendly environment.
Phase one of the renovation also included ten additional beer taps in the club level, increasing from six to 16. Large videoboards were added to the primary 50-yard lounges, allowing patrons to view eight games at the same time.
Bidwill said it is important to give Cardinals fans a top-tier product both on and off the field, and believes the renovations will help accomplish that.
"The stadium has never looked better," Bidwill said.