To claim the title of “Best FIFA World Cup Ever”, Qatar really had their work cut out for them in 2022. Since the turn of the 21st century, the World Cup has been held in countries like Germany, South Africa, Brazil, and Russia with outstanding results, yet, Qatar did everything they could to give the world the gift of the BEST sporting event to date… and they delivered!
The overall experience was phenomenal! Teams from every continent made it to the top 16 elimination rounds. History was made by Saudi Arabia winning against Argentina, Morocco making it to a Semi-final, and the participation of the first female referee at a men’s World Cup game. The stadiums were state-of-the-art and the 974 Stadium was even “transportable” (such is set to be dismantle in the next months and shipped to different countries to build smaller stadiums). Records were set at all levels and emotions ran high. Dreams were quashed, and lifelong goals were achieved in the name of the greatest sport in the world.
Qatar: A Doorway to the Middle East
The tournament served as the doorway to showcase the Middle Eastern culture to its best and prove to the world their society is not as other Nationalities are painting it. From the moment you stepped into their world-class airport filled with art sculptures, to witnessing the excellent infrastructure and skyline built to accommodate hundreds of thousands of new visitors, to riding the best public transportation around town and enjoying the cleanliness of the City, to make visitors feel safe even in the darkest hours to fantastic hospitality and divine multi-cultural food, to meeting with residents that welcomed you with a warm smile. There are no words to describe the amazing coordination of this event. We commend Qatar for adjusting its conservative ways of living and opening the doors for the world to experience the beauty of its country and its people.
Those lucky enough to attend the 30-day tournament experienced Qatar at its best!
Highlights of the 2022 FIFA World Cup
Located within walking distance of Musherib (The Design District) lies the marketplace of Souq Waqif, Doha’s oldest souq, and a major attraction. It’s a great place to enjoy the local flavors, buy souvenirs, or walk around. Can you believe they even sell birds? This beautiful and typically serene market was abuzz with excitement throughout the World Cup, particularly on the nights that the local favorites won their matches.
An architectural five stars wonder! The Katara Towers, a 36-story high visually reminiscent of two crossed scimitars, was one of the official bases for FIFA and its delegations, hosting the elite of the soccer world. The building itself is a structure straight out of a 007 film. It is currently the city’s most emblematic building representing its present and future, and the beautiful aesthetic skyline makes it a must-see from every angle.
Lusail Fan Fest
Fan fests have been what some call the “soul of the tournament” ever since they were launched at the 2006 Germany World Cup. These fan festivals have grown to be an amazing, vibrant set of events that allow those who aren’t attending a match but want to be part of the revelry a place to celebrate and enjoy the games. The Lusail Fan Fest was held on Lusail Boulevard, next to the iconic Lusail Stadium (our favorite stadium by far) and hosted amazing live performances, dancing, parades and live music throughout the entire World Cup.
Tourism to the desert
Many of those who attended have admitted would never have gone to the desert on a trip or a vacation but were pleasantly surprised at the variety and options available to tourists in the area. Tourism Qatar was ready for the influx of soccer fans and handled itself beautifully in the face of the surge of travelers. The desert proved to be a place of history, reflection, serenity and adventure to be shared with friends and family. (Our favorite attraction)
To say the stadiums in Doha were impressive is an understatement. Eight stadiums with an attendance capacity of 40,000 to a unique 80,000 attendees gave these matches the magnificent home they deserved. By the way, the capacity of each stadium, in reality, was set to be at least 9,000 seats more. When you compare the oldest stadium used, which opened in 1976, to one of the newest, Stadium 974, which is to be disassembled, the innovative spirit of the soccer world is evident in the very structures in which the games were played. The Qataris went above and beyond by creating a metro system (free service) that connected all the stadiums so fans could easily watch more than one match per day.
Getting around to the different stadiums and fan festivals was simple and easy. Public transportation was accessible for everyone in the area, with no major delays or transportation challenges. Metro, taxi, Uber, buses, walking paths…you name it, they had it!
Amazing Security and Safety for Attendees
With events this large, there are often concerns about safety and security. From all reports, fans and members of the public and businesses reported safe and happy operations throughout the entire tournament. This was bolstered by the fact that Qatar is ranked as one of the safest places to live in terms of crime and general safety in the world. Who would have guessed?
Great Hospitality and Friendly Staff
After all the visitors and fans flooded the region and left, the consensus is that… the hospitality of the Qatari people is amazing. Across the board, there were glowing reviews of restaurants, hotels, street vendors, and more. We still recall seeing gentlemen from nearby shops offering dates (datiles in Spanish) and coffee to passersby in Mushreib all day.
Qatar World Cup 2022: A New Standard!
It continues to be clear that soccer is the world's sport. As the 2022 World Cup closes and moves into the record halls as one of, if not the best, FIFA World Cup ever, the new standard is set for the future hosts of the greatest sports tournament on earth. We look forward to seeing the USA, Mexico, and Canada's plans for 2026! We can't wait.
This phenomenal tournament will undoubtedly inspire communities worldwide to get more involved with the game to impact the region they live in significantly.
Contact Upright City to help you with your business development strategies concerning the beautiful game of soccer.