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Bordeaux justly proud of new EURO stadium

Described as "one of the stand-out examples" of the new venues being built to stage UEFA EURO 2016, the Stade de Bordeaux was officially inaugurated on Monday.

Stade de Bordeaux inauguration ©Vigouroux - Perspective

Two thousand special guests attended the official opening of the new Stade de Bordeaux on Monday, with EURO 2016 SAS president Jacques Lambert noting that the venue is "one of the stand-out examples of the new generation of stadiums that organising UEFA EURO 2016 has allowed France to build".

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Elegant, airy, unique and original were some of the most used adjectives as guests took a first look around the 42,115-seater Stade de Bordeaux. Built for a cost of €183m, its unique metallic structure and the 900 stanchions, designed to resemble local Landes-pine posts, give the stadium a graceful look. Bordeaux's mayor Alain Juppé, one of the many notable guests at the inauguration, said it was "a piece of art which will enrich our cultural heritage".

Conceived by Herzog and De Meuron, who designed the home of FC Bayern München as well as the Beijing's 'Bird's Nest' National stadium, the new home of FC Girondins de Bordeaux is one of four venues being built from scratch for the first 16-team UEFA European Championship finals; just three new 30,000-plus capacity stadiums had been built in France in the previous 70 years. It came together quickly, the contract for its construction having been signed on 28 September 2011.

Guests got a taste of local culture as performances from the Orchestra Nationale Bordeaux Aquitaine and the choir of the Opéra Nationale de Bordeaux set the stands vibrating. The audience included secretary of state for sport Thierry Braillard, regional council president Alain Rousset, regional prefect Michel Delpuech, Girondins president Jean-Louis Triaud and the president of M6 – the club's main shareholders – Nicolas de Tavernost. Also in attendance were Xavier Huillard and Jean-Claude Fayat, who oversaw the stadium's construction and commercial operations.

Five games will be played at the Stade de Bordeaux at UEFA EURO 2016, including one quarter-final, but – with the stadium bringing huge economic opportuinities to the club and the area – its adventures will continue long after next summer.

The Stade de Bordeaux on the day of its inauguration
The Stade de Bordeaux on the day of its inauguration©Getty Images
The Stade de Bordeaux will stage five games at UEFA EURO 2016
The Stade de Bordeaux will stage five games at UEFA EURO 2016©Getty Images
Mayor Alain Juppé conducts the inauguration of the Stade de Bordeaux
Mayor Alain Juppé conducts the inauguration of the Stade de Bordeaux©EURO 2016 SAS