Club: Sparta Rotterdam | Opening: 1916 | Capacity: 11,000 seats
History and description
In the early 20th century, Sparta was one of the most successful clubs of the Netherlands when they decided to build a proper stadium.
Het Kasteel, officially called Sparta Stadion, opened on the 14th of October 1916 with a friendly between Sparta and Rangers FC. It was the first club-owned stadium in the Netherlands.
Most characteristic aspect of the new stadium was its pavilion in the shape of a castle (“kasteel”), inspired by a castle that had stood at the site centuries earlier. Due to a lack of building materials, the planned corner towers got replaced by simple wooden entrances.
The stadium got further developed in the late 1920s with new wooden stands, but then remained more or less the same for the next decades.
In the 1950s, Sparta presented plans for a redeveloped stadium with a capacity of 50,000, but finally had to settle for a more modest redevelopment. Two new stands got built on both sides, resulting in a capacity of 30,000 places.
In the following decades, the state of the much-too-large stadium slowly deteriorated, though some small renovation works were performed in the early 1990s.
Talk remained of building a new stadium in another part of Rotterdam, possibly to be shared with Excelsior, but in the end was decided to rebuild Het Kasteel at its present site. Works started in 1999.
The only remaining part of the old stadium is the castle pavilion, the rest got demolished and replaced by four new enclosed all-seater stands. As the pitch got turned 90 degrees, the pavilion was moved from one of the ends to the centre of one of the sides.
(photos of the present Het Kasteel below)
Het Kasteel is located in the Spangen area in the west of Rotterdam at just under 3 kilometres from Rotterdam’s central railway station and the city centre.
The stadium is best reached from the A20 motorway, which runs slightly north of the stadium. Leave the A20 at exit 12 Spaanse Polder/Delfshaven and turn right toward Centrum/Delfshaven. At the second traffic lights turn left onto the Spaanse Weg, and a few hundred metres later right onto the Horvathweg. The stadium lies on the right side of the road.
Het Kasteel is a 5 to 10-minute walk away from metro stop Marconiplein. The stop can be reached with metro line A, B, and C, which can all be boarded at stop Beurs in the city centre.
From the central railway station it may be easier to catch a tram. One can take tram 8 from the station or any of various city centre stops (e.g. Beurs or Euromast). Take the tram in the direction of Spangen, and get off right in front of the stadium at stop Spartastraat. The tram runs in quite a roundabout way, which means it takes 30 minutes to arrive.
Tram 21 and 23 go in a more direct way. Take one of the trams from the central station (direction Woudhoek or Holy) and get off at stop PC Hooftplein, from where it is a short walk to the stadium. The journey takes 12 minutes.
Address: Spartapark Noord 1, 3027 VW Rotterdam
Tickets are also available at the Fanshop from two hours before the start of the match. Sparta rarely sells out in the Eerste Divisie.
Sparta may occasionally require possession of a Sparta Club Card to be able to buy tickets, though for most matches tickets go on general sale.
Tickets cost either €14.00 or €15.00 for a seat at one of the ends, or €18.50 or €22.00 for a seat at one of the sides.
For more information email email@example.com.
Sparta Rotterdam offer guided stadium tours to groups of at least 6 people. The tours include a visit to the Sparta museum.
For more information or bookings call +31 (0) 10 890 92 10 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. The tour costs €5.00 per person.
Relevant Internet links
Sparta-rotterdam.nl – Official website of Sparta Rotterdam.
Rotterdam.info – Website of the Rotterdam tourist board.
RET.nl – Rotterdam public transport information.
9292ov.nl – Public transport journey planner.