No venue in history has ever gone as viral as the ‘Sphere’ in Las Vegas. Social media has been captivated by the giant glowing ball of LED lights ever since it first lit up on the 4th of July.
Although it will cost a small fortune to get inside of the Sphere, it costs nothing to look at its exosphere from the streets of Las Vegas. To get the most perfect picture possible, however, will run you $15.
Four parking garages at the neighboring Hughes Center, all run by the same company, are making bank by charging tourists for an unobstructed view of the Sphere. The parking spots are reserved for tenants who work on the Hughes Center campus during the day. They are open to the public after 6:00 p.m.
Once the Sphere was almost fully done, we started getting a ton of extra vehicle traffic in the area. And once they turned the lights on, it just became a spectacle in the middle of the desert. We were getting endless lines of people offering to pay to park, just to stand on top of the garage and take a picture of the Sphere, so we just embraced it.
— LAZ Parking Regional General Manager Brandon Myers, via Thrillist
LAZ Parking charges $15 to park in any of the four garages on most evenings. However, if U2 is performing, the price jumps up to $30.
The northernmost garage has the best views so it fills up first. From there, tourists can either wait for a spot to open up or go to one of the other three garages.
LAZ Parking ramped up its nighttime staff and a group of yellow vest-wearing employees help to direct traffic with glowing red batons. Others take payments as cars lineup to get a peak at the Sphere!
While it might seem ridiculous to pay $14 for a view of a 580,000-square foot ball of lights, most people who pony up the money leave happy. Nearly 1.2 million LED pucks make up the 16K display. Each puck contains 38 LED diodes. Each diode can display 256 million colors. It’s pretty insane.
Considering that most things in Las Vegas cost far more than $15, there are worse ways to occupy an hour or two! Getting an unobstructed view of the Sphere up close is pretty epic and, apparently, worth the money.