Milan-Cortina to host 2026 Winter Olympics

The Milan-Cortina bid team ahead of Monday's vote to decide the 2026 Winter Olympic hosts

The 2026 Winter Olympics will be held in Milan and Cortina d’Ampezzo after their joint bid beat off competition from Stockholm and Are.

The 2026 Winter Olympics and Paralympics will take place in Italy after Milan and Cortina d’Ampezzo were announced as hosts.

The Milan-Cortina bid saw off the challenge of Stockholm-Are in a vote at an International Olympic Committee meeting in Lausanne, Switzerland on Monday.

Cortina staged the 1956 Games, while Italy last held the Winter Olympics in 2006, when Turin was the venue.

“Congratulations to Milan-Cortina. We can look forward to an outstanding and sustainable Olympic Winter Games in a traditional winter sports country,” IOC President Thomas Bach said in a statement.

“The passion and knowledge of Italian fans, together with experienced venue operators, will create the perfect atmosphere for the best athletes in the world.

“The Olympic Winter Games Milan-Cortina 2026 will feature iconic venues and beautiful settings, combining the attractions of a modern European metropolis with a classic Alpine environment.”

The vote count was 47-34 in favour of Milan-Cortina, with one abstention.

Several cities had previously dropped out of the running, even though the IOC relaxed rules over financial guarantees and government support for 2026.

“We have lowered the cost and complexity of developing Games projects, which now serve the long-term development goals of the host communities and have sustainability and legacy at their hearts,” Bach added.

“This has led to a significantly reduced organisation budget and the use of 93 per cent existing or temporary competition venues.”

Beijing in China will stage the 2022 Winter Olympic and Paralympics.