Where could The International be held?
The biggest Dota 2 tournament in the e-sports history is traditionally held in the USA. This is rather inconvenient for European and Asian fans, since they have to spend a lot of time in-flight to get there. So, if the tournament ever goes out of the States, where could that be? Let’s think about it!
Paris is one of the most favourable places for e-sports events. As Hemingway once said, “Paris is a movable feast”. This city is no more expensive than any other capital, yet has much more sights to offer. And e-sports is not new to the city, it is here, where the once main WCG competitor, ESWC takes place. Paris has a plenty of trade and exhibition centers, which could be reequipped into e-sports stadiums. Besides, there is a famous football stadium, “Stade de France”. If Riot Games can hold their world championship at football stadiums and get 40 000 viewers, why can’t Valve?
Imagine how many people could visit The International, if it were held at “Stade de France”!
- Country: France.
- Population: 2 243 833.
- Airports:  (Charles de Gaulle, Beauvais-Tillé, Orly, Le Bourget).
- E-sports tournaments in the city: ESWC.
- Places, suitable for TI: “Stade de France”; by the Eifel Tower.
Few people would refuse living in the luxurious capital of Great Britain. The city is full of legendary places you simply can’t pass by, such as Big Ben, Buckingham Palace with its wonderful parks and gardens, London Tower and Tower Bridge.
Royal Opera House in London – best location for an event like The International
London hosted summer Olympics in 2012. It could as well host huge tournaments in other areas. Just like that, London is home to the CS:GO Gfinity Spring Masters and to the FACEIT competition, which moved here from Milan. And it was Royal Opera House in London, where the European Call of Duty championship took place. This city indeed has a lot of significant and unconventional places for something like The International. Valve should think of changing the venue.
- Country: UK.
- Population: 8 416 999.
- Airports:  (Heathrow, Gatwick, Stansted, Luton, City, Southend).
- E-sports tournaments in the city: Gfinity Spring Masters, Faceit CS:GO League, European Call of Duty Championship.
- Places, suitable for TI: Royal Opera House, Wembley stadium.
Seoul (South Korea)
South Korea is the leading e-sports country in terms of organizational and gaming aspects. Computer sports here is iconic and is equal in popularity to the conventional sports, which is something you can’t see elsewhere in the world. So, if The International decides to leave the USA and move to Seoul, few should be against it.
Koreans proved their ability to organize large e-sports competitions and an example of that is last year’s League of Legends world championship that took place at the Sangam Stadium in Seoul and gathered a record amount of spectators.
Beautiful and capacious stadium in the Korean capital can become an interesting spot for the next TI
Seoul is a central place in South Korea, the city is known for its skyscrapers and ancient palaces, dating back to the Joseon dynasty. While other cities could have hostile citizens and rude staff, citizens of Seoul will treat you with all the respect and will not only show you the way, but may even lead you to the place, should you ask them for a direction.
- Country: South Korea.
- Population: over 10 million.
- Airports:  (Incheon).
- E-sports tournaments in the city: League of Legends world championship 2014.
- Places, suitable for TI: Sangam Stadium, palaces Gyeongbokgunk and Changdeokgung, trade centers “COEX” and “Lotte World”, temples Bongeunsa and Jogyesa.
Italian capital has not hosted any of the e-sports events yet. Therefore, The International could become the first one. Tournament of this scale could be held at any place in Rome. Just think about it: Coliseum, Pantheon, Capitol, Trevi Fountain, Roman Forum, Piazza Venezia and these are only a few of wonderful sights.
2009 Champions League took place here. The city is a home to 2 great football clubs, Rome and Lacio. Derby between those teams is a major event in Italy. And though we don’t know any Italian Dota 2 teams, The International here could give a birth to a top tier squad in this country.
The most famous building in Rome would be difficult to rent. But imagine the fans’ reaction to The International going on here!
- Countrly: Italy.
- Population: 2 870 493.
- Airports:  (Leonardo da Vinci International Airport).
- No e-sports events have been held here so far.
- Places, suitable for TI: Coliseum, Rome Opera Theatre.
Shanghai is one of the four direct-controlled municipalities of the People's Republic of China. Although not a capital, the city is unrivaled in its size. “Pearl of the orient” or an Eastern Paris could become an ideal place for The International. Firstly, e-sports in China is close in its phenomenon to their Korean neighbours. Secondly, Dota 2 is basically the only big money game, since almost all of the top teams here are sponsored by Chinese millionaires. And last, but not least, Shanghai has previously hosted some of the best e-sports events.
You can organize The International literally anywhere in Shanghai. The best place for it, however, will probably be around the Oriental Pearl Tower. After all, that’s the main attraction of the city.
Shanghai hosted one of the Formula 1 stages. It is a city for the lovers of skyscrapers and heights, the most popular of which are in the Pudong district, at the Oriental Pearl Tower, at the Jin Mao tower and at the Shanghai World Financial Center.
There usually are 3 reasons to come to Shanghai: to visit and see one of the biggest cities on Earth, for a business meeting and as a part of a shopping tour. The International could become the fourth one.
- Country: China.
- Population: 25 150 000.
- Airports:  (Hongqiao, Pudong).
- E-sports tournaments in the city: WCG 2011, Intel Extreme Masters 8, National Electronic Sports Tournament.
- Places, suitable for TI: Shanghai World Financial Center, local stadium and around the Oriental Pearl Tower.
Teams, players and fans, who are going to visit the LAN-finals, lack something exotic and extraordinary. And Dubai could become The International’s zing. Oasis in the desert, this UAE city has turned from a colony into a dream with skyscrapers and immense infrastructure in only 20 years.
Although e-sports is not as popular in the region, as it is in the USA, Asia and Europe, The International hosted in Dubai could lead to local magnates sponsoring future e-sports teams and events.
Imagine The International at this hotel. Even after losing you can go swimming and sunbathing. And you could do just the same if you were to win. Isn’t it wonderful?
- Country: UAE.
- Population: 2 106 177.
- Airports:  (International Dubai Airport, Al Maktoum International Airport).
- No e-sports events have been held here.
- Places, suitable for TI: practically anywhere.
Australia is a continent, separated from Europe and Asia. However, the electronic sports has reached even here. Australian players often surprise everyone and spark interest among European organization.
Sydney Opera House is the fortune of entire Australia.The International would look amazing here.
So why should The International be held at Sydney? Firstly, this big of event will get tons of Australian fans watching. Consider Eurovision, where Australia took part for the first time and how much attention it has received. Secondly, Sydney is a fascinating and sunny city with an amazing harbor. It is one of the most flourishing metropolises to this date. One could have a great time here, as well as enjoy great e-sports battles.
- Country: Australia.
- Population: 4 800 000.
- Airports:  (Sydney (Kingsford Smith) Airport).
- No e-sports events have been held here.
- Places, suitable for TI: Sydney Opera House.
Stockholm might be one of the most popular options for The International on this list, mainly because it is home to numerous e-sports competitions and festivals. ESL is planning on organizing something similar to ESL One Katowice here next year. Also we shouldn’t forget the famous Dreamhack that comes to Stockholm every year.
Stockholm possesses a unique colouring and beauty. The city is situated on the 14 islands, surrounded by water and stuffed with parks. Thousands of tourists come here to feel a special mood of the place and feed off its positive energy. And look at all those countless museums, palaces and other sights!
- Country: Sweden.
- Population: 871 952.
- Airports:  (Stockholm-Arlanda, Stockholm-Bromma, Stockholm-Skavsta).
- E-sports tournaments in the city: DreamHack.
- Places, suitable for TI: Globen Arena, Tele 2 Arena, Friends Arena.
There are tons of Dota 2 followers in China. Organizing the tournament here would be a good message from Valve to their Chinese friends. Tickets would have been sold out much faster than they are now. Not even in minutes, they would be sold out in seconds. There are some obstacles, however, considering mentality and laws. What is good in the USA might not work in China.
Beijing is a city of opportunity. 2008 Olympics was a sign that this city can host world class championships. Perhaps, the National Stadium (Bird’s Nest) could suit not only for traditional sports, but also for a huge e-sports completion, like The International. Many cities have good stadiums, but this one is second-to-none. And Valve would certainly have no problem filling it up. Dota 2 is so popular in China, that one stadium won’t even be enough.
Beijing National Stadium looks like a giant nest, due to intertwining steel beams all around the building. The place is highlighted at night and looks in balance with the surroundings during daytime. One can’t imagine a better place in Beijing for TI.
Strangely enough, the city has yet to host any major e-sports championships. There were only regional qualifiers for the World Cyber Games grand-finals. The biggest piece of the cake has been always received by the cities of Kunshan and Chongqing.
- Country: China.
- Population: 21 516 000.
- Airports:  (Beijing Capital International Airport).
- E-sports tournaments in the city: regional WCG finals.
- Places, suitable for TI: Bird’s Nest stadium.
The International 2015 in Seattle
Lately the world Dota 2 Championship has been taking place at Seattle. That is in Seattle, and not in New York or Los Angeles. What is so attracting about the city? Probably, the fact that Valve’s headquarters is located in it.
Seattle is an American London. No, the resemblance is not architectural, from this point of view the two cities have little in common. They are similar in their weather. Seattle is called “the city of rain”. Snow and heat are rare guests here, however, drizzle is very common.
Key Arena is a verified place. The International was hosted in this exact arena, which accommodates up to 18 000 people.
Seattle has tons of parks, beautiful old town, museums, fountains, sculptures and mighty skyscrapers in the center. The main attraction is by no doubt a Space Needle tower. It could be seen on TI 2015 posters. On top of this tower you can have a seat at a cozy restaurant, sip a cup of coffee and enjoy the view.
- Country: USA.
- Population: 634 535.
- Airports:  (Seattle-Tacoma International Airport).
- E-sports tournaments in the city: The International 2014, The International 2015.
- The International takes place in Key Arena with up to 18 000 seats.
These particular cities were chosen because we find them to be the most interesting ones. We tried to mix the experienced e-sports cities with the “green” ones. We could have added Berlin or Cologne (The International 2011 was hosted there), since Germany has proven its ability to organize some of the best e-sports events. Could have also added Katowice and Jonkoping as the established hosts of ESL and Dreamhack respectively. But we agreed not to make this list infinite. Anyway, your opinion on the topic could be different to ours. You can express your thoughts in the comments below and name your top picks for the best TI cities.