$17,000 to Watch the Masters? How Sports Entice Deep-Pocketed Fans.

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Teams, leagues and event organizers are pursuing enthusiasts with the promise of luxury and exclusivity, in hopes of bigger profits and lasting loyalty.

The oysters and shrimp cocktail emerge by midmorning, nestled neatly on ice. The pastries look as if they were overnighted from Paris, even as the signature breakfast sandwich — a biscuit with fried chicken, pimento cheese and hot honey — showcases Southern cuisine. An Augusta National Golf Club green jacket hangs on the wall, and 81 televisions show the theatrics and athletic brilliance unfolding on the emerald grounds that host the Masters Tournament.

Entrance to this particular sanctum, christened Map & Flag in a nod to the Masters’s storied logo, runs $17,000 per person for the week of golf’s first major tournament. And Map & Flag is not even perched on the 18th green. It is across the street from Augusta National. Getting there requires passing a gas station.

The project may be the most lavish example of how teams, leagues and event organizers are pursuing luxury and exclusivity with zeal. The hope is that refined appeals to deep-pocketed fans will result in over-the-top spending, bigger profits and lasting loyalty.

Augusta National markets Map & Flag as “the first and only official Masters hospitality experience outside the gates.”

“Sports teams are always looking for new ways to drive incremental revenue, and the prices they can charge for elevated experiences far outweigh the cost of building them,” said Todd Lindenbaum, the founder of SuiteHop, a secondary marketplace for luxury suites. “They will pay it off in a year or two if they do it right.”

The live sports experience is changing. The fan scarfing a hot dog while drinking a beer in the bleachers is making way for the one watching the game in an intimate suite, a V.I.P. club or a casual meeting spot with all-inclusive food offerings and bar stools overlooking the field.

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