World Cup 2014: A Guide to Belo Horizonte

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The Mineirão stadium in Belo Horizonte got its facelift to host the upcoming matches of FIFA World Cup 2014.

The stadium was inaugurated in 1965 and is the home ground of Clube Atlético Mineiro and Cruzeiro Esporte Clube.  The renovation was over in December and it is the second stadium in Brazil ready to host the World Cup.

Estádio Mineirão was once the second-largest stadium in Brazil till Estádio Maracanã in Rio de Janeiro took the place.

Mineirão is a historical venue and has been added in the list of Belo Horizonte's Historical Heritage. The modernisation project has added a lot of new features which are needed to host the prestigious tournament. The renovation primarily focuses on sustainability and added security by placing 350 cameras in different strategic points.

The roof of the stadium uses photovoltaic panels, which has the ability to produce energy for at least 1,200 homes surrounding the location. The oval form, which has been there since 1965, was kept intact to retain the old glory. Trees have been planted outside the stadium to increase the aesthetic feel. The stadium has the seating capacity of 62,547.

The following are the matches to be played in Mineirão: Colombia vs. Greece (June 14), Belgium vs. Algeria (June 17), Argentina vs. Iran (June 21) and Costa Rica vs. England (June 24).  In the second round of the tournament, the winner of Group A will play against runner-up of Group B on June 28, followed by one semifinal match on July 8, in which the winner of the first quarterfinal will contend against the winner of the second quarterfinal.

Location: Mineirão stadium is located in the neighborhood of Pampulha, and it belongs to the Minas Gerais state government. It is around 6.5 miles off the city's downtown. The roads are congested, but there are enough transports like public buses and taxis that lead to the stadium. The problem that lies with the city is the accommodation even if the Savassi, Carmo and Lourdes neighbourhood hosts some good hotels and restaurants for tourists.  

Weather:  Summer at Belo Horizonte is quite hot. Temperature usually varies from 24°C to 27°C in the month of June and July.

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