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It’s finally here! The largest esports arena in the Southern Hemisphere, Fortress Melbourne, is open today. After getting a behind-the-scenes look at the venue, we’re really excited to see where it goes from here.

Australia’s first esports and gaming attraction

Fortress Melbourne covers over 2700 square meters and includes a range of purpose-built attractions. There’s a 200-seat esports arena, VIP game booths, streamer pods, and a tabletop gaming area. Function spaces, restaurants, and two bars are also jam-packed into the venue.

One of the places fans have been most excited about is the Tavern – a medieval-style restaurant area with bookcases, old-skool chandeliers, flags, and themed wall decorations. An arcade gaming area is part of the venue as well, with over 160 fast Alienware PCs. As the main sponsor, Alienware and Dell feature heavily. Dell supplied the main tech infrastructure for the entire venue.

Carolyn Viney, Chief Development Officer for Vicinity Centres, is very excited to see the doors open:

Located in the heart of Australia’s sporting capital, and with more than 20 million visitors every year to the centre, Emporium Melbourne provides both the stage and the audience for Fortress to attract local and international visitors, and novice to experienced gamers, in a state-of-the-art arena.

Melbourne: Australia’s capital for esports

Beyond just excitement for Fortress Melbourne, Viney has recognized the role Melbourne plays in Australia’s esports scene. She believes Fortress Melbourne will have a key part to play in this.

Melbourne continues to grow as an international city and will become Australia’s most populous city by 20261. With the night-time economy now contributing more than $3.5 billion to the state every year, Fortress Melbourne is part of our market-leading destination strategy to introduce new entertainment concepts to attract and engage people who live, work or play in the CBD. Melbourne already hosts major game events like the Melbourne Esports Open and PAX Australia, and we’re excited to join that list of premium game experiences and open our doors to offer an amazing entertainment space that everyone can enjoy.

Well, there you go. You can expect Fortress Melbourne to become a place for meetups, launch events, after parties, and more. Already, Rainbow Six Seige has held its 5-year launch party in a small part of the venue.

This exclusive party was held in the 200-seat arena. Imagine what it could look like when launch events like this take over the entirety of Fortress Melbourne.

What will be next?

Fortress Melbourne is located on the ground floor at Emporium Melbourne. This is the first experience of its kind to come to a shopping center. Here we will see the intersection of entertainment, gaming, fashion, and food.

With this opening, Melbourne has further solidified its position as Australia’s esports and gaming capital. What do you think is next? What do you hope to see in this new venue? Let us know all your thoughts in the comments below.