FAU’s esports arena is officially open

This is the official opening of FAU’s esports arena since its announcement back in the Fall 2019 semester.


The arena opened on Oct. 5. Photo by Edward Friedman.

Richard Pereira, Staff Writer

After one year of waiting, FAU’s esports Arena is officially open.

The esports Arena had its long-awaited opening at the Student Union on Oct. 5, with its original opening date of March this year being pushed back due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Michael Cooper, director of the Student Union, said they are engaging with FAU students to join them in the center every day.

“Interest is growing as we speak and we expect it to grow in popularity very quickly,” Cooper said.

Julie Tomanio, president of FAU’s esports gaming club, said she is excited about the opening of the eSports Arena.

“It’s something that many schools don’t have access to, and I feel that it’s an incredible resource to have,” Tomanio said. “As someone who plays video games often, I love the idea of having access to gaming setups on campus.”

The two sections of the esports arena that are accessible to those visiting are the pay-to-play section and the free section.

According to FAU’s esports Twitter account, the pay-to-play section features 40 brand-new gaming PCs, 20 playable games, host tournaments, live-streams, and gaming headsets.

Prices will vary depending on the number of hours that are reserved. One hour will be $4, five hours will be $18, and ten hours will be $35.

The free section includes billiards, ping-pong tables, and five stations involving TV screens with seating (due to COVID-19 restrictions, only two are available) as people can bring their own console to play their games there.

“Currently, our occupancy in the space is calculated at 25% of capacity due to the COVID influence,” Cooper said. “The arena is equipped with numerous hand sanitizing and disinfectant wipe stations, is routinely cleaned throughout the entire time open via our custodial and gaming staff, and is disinfected each evening with electrostatic sprayers.”

The arena is open at noon and closes at 8 p.m. Monday thru Friday.

Cooper sees it as a premier location on the Boca Raton campus for the entire student population to enjoy local gaming whether a resident in one of the halls or a commuter student going to class.

“We foresee tournaments, social events, learning opportunities, and many potential excitements coming in the future,” Cooper said.

When the restrictions lessen, according to Tomanio, the club wants to hold large scale events in which other schools can come and compete with FAU.

“As it is right now, we are trying to work it out so that our competitive teams can practice inside the arena,” Tomanio said. “We look forward to the future!”

To book reservations for the arena, click here.

Richard Pereira is a staff writer for the University Press. For information regarding this or other stories, email [email protected] or tweet him @Rich26Pereira.