This morning's Wall Street Journal tours three new luxury sports facilities -- those belonging to the New York Yankees, the New York Mets and Your Dallas Cowboys -- and deems them "a case of monumentally bad timing," which, yeah, is a bit of a no-brainer. Notes the paper, the Cowboys are still trying to unload 2,000 premium seats and "about 50 of their 300 luxury suites." And, of course, ain't nobody willing to buy the naming rights; though, seriously, I've got 20 bucks.
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At a combined cost of more than $3.5 billion, the stadiums were conceived and financed in a vastly different environment, a time when corporations and municipalities were flush with cash. Now they're opening just as corporate America is going through a massive belt-tightening -- and trying to avoid the appearance of extravagance at all costs.
"Let's face it, if you're taking TARP funds, it's really hard to justify getting a [luxury] box," says Neal Sroka, a luxury real estate agent hired by the Yankees to help sell the team's premium seats, referring to the funds distributed to banks under the Troubled Asset Relief Program.