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“Bonamassa on good form ...”
Review of Manchester Arena

Manchester Arena
Ranked #22 of 189 things to do in Manchester
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: Manchester Arena, managed and operated by SMG Europe, is one of the busiest venues in the world and the largest indoor arena in Europe. Since opening in 1995, the Arena has hosted the biggest names in live entertainment including U2, The Rolling Stones, Madonna, Lady Gaga, Pavarotti and the record-breaking 2010/2011 residency by local comedian Peter Kay. In addition to live music, we've also staged some of the biggest events in the UK sporting calendar including several 2002 Commonwealth Games' events, the 2012 Olympic basketball warm-up match between team USA and GB, the 2008 FINA World Swimming Championships and international boxing bouts by Mike Tyson, David Haye, Joe Calzaghe and local champions Ricky Hatton and Amir Khan. We've also played a key part in Manchester's rich musical heritage with historic shows by local bands Take That, Oasis, Elbow, New Order, James, Happy Mondays, The Charlatans, Noel Gallagher's High Flying Birds, M People, Doves, The Inspiral Carpets, The Verve, Simply Red and The Courteeners. Attracting over one million visitors each year, the 21,000 capacity Arena is a former winner of the industry's prestigious International Venue of the Year award.
Reviewed 23 September 2013

Saw Joe Bonamassa 21.9.13.Sharp suit and sunglasses. A grounded and amiable man. Blistering virtuosity. Always worth the trip.

It's years since I was at the ("Phones 4 u" - really?!) Arena. I had no recollection of steep stairs which every other visitor seems to have fixated on.
The Eiger this place is not. It is a touch steep which is exacerbated by a total lack of handrails. My "Local" music venue is the Sheffield (Motorpoint) Arena, which is well - equipped in the handrail department. I think this is down to wider steps which allowed a handrail to be fitted down the centre of the steps.

Anyway, enough of the accessibility. The venue is a typical concrete and breeze, 1990's functional, no nonsense arena. For the visit of the Maestro the arena was divided in half, stage in the centre, curtain back drop, seating about 4,000 and giving an amazing intimate feel. (Front - row seats were also helpful.) The last time I saw JB, at Sheffield Arena, the same set up was employed and it works really well. Sound was spot on. Everything not nailed down about my person jumped about with the pounding bass, yet the ringing ears I often suffer from were completely absent. I was able to order drinks and crisps at the hotel bar afterwards without shouting or repetition. The performance was very clear throughout.

I think the limited seating kept the venue quiet. Queues for w.c. and drinks were small. The venue was clean and tidy. As it's structurally connected to Manchester Victoria, and there is a vast car park next door,transport links could not be better. A good experience, thank you MEN,an amazing performance from an amazing talent, thanks to JB.

Thank JohnScarr70
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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1,466 - 1,470 of 2,114 reviews

Reviewed 22 September 2013

Only went for Joe ( who?)..If you have to ask you need to be converted lol ..Didn't like all of the steps going down to the floor

Thank Malchris
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 21 September 2013

Rod is a star performer but i will never go to the MEN arena ever again. The acoustics and sound where terrible so far as to say it ruined our long awaited evening and every ones sat around us with there arms folded watching people below us thorughly enjoying themselves. The sound crew need to check the sound eveywhere not just the floor area.. Paul Norton

1  Thank Paul N
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 18 September 2013

I have seen a couple of concerts in this arena and i do like the way the arena is designed so you get a decent view no matter where you sit.
However, the stairs are lethal!! No hand rails, and there are soooo many of them, they are little steps too so you can barely get your foot on them haha! In the dark they are impossible so be careful!
Getting out is a mission if you do not know where to go, and our taxi refused to drive right up to the arena which only made things worse.
Plan ahead would be my advice!!

1  Thank Hollie G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 17 September 2013

We attended the arena to see Roger waters perform The Wall. Stairs lots of stairs,Polite and well informed staff,Clean toilets and good all round views .exiting the arena again involved lots of stairs but was quick and efficient. The concert was easily one of the best I have ever been to. The only bad point was the prices for drinks and food £4 a pint and £3.50 for a very small Pasty,But when you are a captive audience the prices go higher as they are aware you have no other alternatives

Thank johnstonei
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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