Sydney Cricket Grounds and Allianz Stadium – Sydney, Australia
It was exciting to us on Day 1 in Sydney to see the stadium from above while we visited the Sydney Tower Eye.
It seems the building came to be over time late in the 19th century, around the late 1840s. 1886 saw the building of the current Member’s Pavilion. The Ladies’ Pavilion came along 10 years later. Both still stand on the property today, blending old with modern structures.
In this image from February of 1892 you can see the current Member’s Pavilion in the background.
Sydney Cricket Grounds are the home ground for the New South Wales Blues cricket team (since 1878), the Sydney Sixers of the Big Bash League (since 2011) and the Sydney Swans of the Australian Football League (since 1982). You can find out more information on teams and see a schedule of events here.
The current entrance to the stadium appears as below:
We did the guided walking tour which was about 90 minutes and cost $30 at the time. (at time of update is now $33AUD). There are a few tours/experiences available. Learn more here.
Enjoy this drone footage from overhead and around the Cricket Grounds.
Starting the Tour
Sydney Cricket Ground members have exclusive access to amenities like the on site restaurant, pool and tennis courts as seen here. We would have the opportunity to eat in the members cafeteria following our tour.
Sydney Cricket Grounds Away Locker Room
We first visited the Away Team Locker Rooms. They’re plain with no frills, but do include two jacuzzi tubs and bath/shower rooms.
Coach’s Briefing Room
Next we made our way to the Coach’s Briefing Room, a place for the teams to meet pre and post matches, or possibly for media interviews post match.
Old Meets New
As mentioned above, the Member’s Pavilion was built in 1886. The area around the rest of the stadium is much newer. The old section works for preserving the history of the grounds and the history of the sport in Sydney. The Member’s Pavilion was originally men only, as that is all membership allowed at that particular time.
With all seating areas combined, the stadium can currently hold 48,000.
It was at this point in the tour we also got to go on the field. As usual Matt was ridiculously happy.
As mentioned above, the Ladies Stand was built in 1896 to accommodate for female members of the grounds and female family members of the players.
Since the Members Pavilion was still male only during a visit by Queen Elizabeth II, a special box area was set up for her and her entourage in the Ladies Pavilion.
The away team enters the field through the Members Pavilion, which to us is an interesting take since normally the spectators don’t have that close of interaction to the athletes.
Members Area Concessions/Bar
A quick pass through of the Members Area Concessions and Bar area showed more of the original architecture and design that went into the styling of the building.
Home Team Locker/Dressing Room
From the members area, we made our way to the Home Team Locker/Dressing Room. This is considerably larger than the away team’s room. Larger lockers, more spaced out, benches, couches, sources of comfort for the team on match days.
Sydney Cricket Grounds Museum
Located in the main building is the Sydney Cricket Grounds Museum. This area has a collection of items over the years from matches, donations from players, and photographs of key moments of the history of the sport. I particularly liked the hologram spectator speaking of past moments within the SCG grounds.
Upper Deck Seating
We finished this portion of the tour by heading to an upper level seating area where we got a birds eye view of the stadium which was being used that day by a youth camp. From this level you could see into an upper deck section of Allianz Stadium where we would head next.
Allianz Stadium opened in 1988 next to Sydney Cricket Grounds. It was previously known as Aussie Stadium, and is home to the Sydney Roosters and South Sydney Rabbitohs. It can seat approximately 45,000 spectators.
During the 2000 Summer Olympics, Allianz was used as a venue. The Women’s association football gold medal match between Norway and the United States was played there. In front of just under 23,000 fans, Norway defeated the USA 3–2.
We only entered the stadium and made our way through the tunnel to the tour. Still quite a sight to see.
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Interested in sports and/or architecture? Stadium tours may be the activity for you!
Sydney Cricket Grounds and allianz stadium – final thoughts
We thoroughly enjoyed this tour. I wish we would have taken more photos, but has already spent much of our time, and phone/camera batteries, touring churches in Sydney that morning, with a long day ahead of us. When/if we revisit Sydney, I would certainly consider touring the stadium again. More importantly I’d like to visit during cricket season and catch a match. We certainly recommend this as part of your Sydney Vacation.